Guess what? The people at BalogunMarket.ng are working on an app that will make it easier for users to buy goods from merchants through chats. They have named it BuyChat and its already in beta testing by select private users (public beta starts on October 15).
BuyChat is a brainchild of BalogunMarket.ng, the startup that lets users buy goods from traders at the legendary Balogun Market in Lagos. This is serious oh!
According to sources, Olayinka Oluwakuse, CEO of BalogunMarket.ng, “Nigerians will go online for what they know and are used to just word-of-mouth advertising,” and that is where the idea of “conversational commerce” found root.
BalogunMarket.ng is an online marketplace which was launched to give users access to buy goods from Balogun Market (the same one you know in Lagos Island) without having to brave the hot Lagos sun and trek many kilometers in the market.
Few months after launch, the BalogunMarket team already figured out a way to link customers with buyers on WhatsApp. Pricing market is a staple of commerce in Nigeria, and this new feature brought the entire experience online – hence the phrase “conversational commerce.”
BuyChat is basically BalogunMarket’s WhatsApp feature with more icing. You will be able to buy goods from merchants in local markets, book flights and hotels, order food from local restaurants (or buka, like you probably call them), and even connect with brands as well.
Like with BalogunMarket.ng, SimplePay and Delivery.ng will be BuyChat’s payment and delivery partners respectively.
The team plans to expand to other cities in Africa and they have already received angel investment from Lagos-based private investment outfit, Niche Capital, to push the flight off the runway.
Can somebody say WOW?!!!