Rise Retail & Payment Solutions: Empowering Businesses for Better Consumer Engagement

Rise Retail & Payment Solutions
Mr. Ajay Prasad | Founder | Rise Retail

Indian retail tech industry has been growing at a phenomenal rate and looks very promising in the years to come. 2018 saw the Retail industry reach Rs. 66.39 lakh crore (US$ 950 billion) at a CAGR of 13 per cent and the analysts expect it to reach Rs. 76.87 lakh crore (US$ 1.1 trillion) by 2020. From the tech perspective, India is a highly under-penetrated market, especially in the unorganized sector. However, in the organized sector, the industry is more innovative as it is customer-driven and is mostly focused on major cities.

Penetration of the unorganized sector has always been seen as a difficult task, especially in the initial phase which makes the finance availability more difficult for the players. Besides, it lacks the right distribution channel for such product which adds to the acquisition cost. This industry requires patience to educate retailers and work along with them to align offerings in the way they require.

This is exactly what Rise Retail & Payment Solutions Pvt Ltd has been offering since its inception in 2014. The Company was established with a mission to enable small and medium-sized retailers (SME) with tech-based tools for better consumer engagement and process automation.

Rise Retail’s online platform provides various opportunities from billing, CRM, inventory mgmt. etc. to consumer loyalty module. Key growth driver for Rise is to educate the target segment about the power of consumer engagement and making our offering user friendly (more automation) at an affordable cost. The key differentiator for Rise is a highly integrated product, which is continuously getting evolved with the need of customers. It believes that staying on this ground would certainly pay it off in the long run.

After spending the initial 6-12 months on bringing tech infrastructure in place, Rise started with loyalty platform and integrated various other value-added modules into the same. Its product is primarily driven through the need of its customers. It takes a fair enough time to develop a product that is truly SME focused, with the right pricing and offering mix. Rise Retails is operating in 5 cities as a market test for key matrices. The team is confident that its expansion would take the exponential curve with more investments.

At the Helm

Rise Retail was Founded by Mr. Ajay Prasad who has over 18 years of experience in the SME segment primarily into the payments domain. A management graduate from IMDR Pune, Ajay has been into leadership roles in various MNCs and inspired growth. Apart from being an entrepreneur, Ajay is an avid sportsperson and an amateur singer with a deep interest in human psychology and Indian politics.

He firmly believes that our unorganized retail sector has tremendous potential to improve our GDP. Under his guidance, Rise Retail developed an integrated platform which addresses key issues of the retailers. Enabling every retailer would also add value to consumers in getting more value at the store and creating a win-win situation for both buyer and sales. He also believes in contributing to the society and nation and for him, the journey has just begun.

Tough Times need Strong Resolve

Finances have always been a challenge right from the beginning for Rise Retail followed by the readiness of small retailers and a perfect pricing mix. Additionally, there is always a potential threat of disruptions by players who have deep pockets and are ready to penetrate the market with a throwaway pricing strategy. However, the retailers as a segment are very different from end consumers and they do have loyalty towards company and products which are addressing their challenges and are satisfied with the serviceability of the company.

Rise Retail identified the key challenges early-on and has worked on it to create more satisfaction and value to customers. Ajay adds:

“We are a determined team with a clear sense of vision. I believe the following attributes kept us afloat even during the tougher times:

  • Strive to develop solutions to customer’s problem in the simplest manner
  • Patience to provide time to retailers in the learning process
  • Our growth is more inward-oriented at present and the same would enable us to expand outwardly
  • High learning appetite

Another large opportunity that Rise Retail is looking at, is the size of the segment, once it has a critical mass, it can certainly bring on more suitable product offerings to create synergy for retailers as well as for the company itself.”

Employees, The Core

Employees, Rise Retail believes, are the key essentials of any organization and they are building blocks for a product, service, strategy and implementation. The team together has been through a lot of pain in the initial years and yet continued to focus and committed to the deliveries of Rise Retail. Ajay praises them saying, “We being at critical stage, keep facing challenges in offering optimum value to our employees. At the same time, the commitment gets acknowledged and are reciprocated by the company to make employees journey worth taking pains for the growth of the organization.

A great team has helped Rise gain client trust by a string of consistent deliveries making it grow as a brand.

Poised for Growth

Rise Retail, at the moment, is expansion ready and looking for right strategic investors for an exponential growth. The company is focused on horizontal growth which will help them expand their portfolio of solutions and services at the same time. This could be achieved by creating a distribution system which is a first-ever in the retail sector. Though many companies struggle to balance scalability and profitability, Rise Retail & Payments Solutions aims to perfect this balance by first building a strong base and then bring in the next level of products.

Rise Retail’s next project is to venture into payments space and build an ecosystem of retailers and consumers together. Web-enabled products and solutions would drive growth on that front. “We believe that for the growth of SMEs in India, we need innovation not just in product offering but also in the distribution, education, marketing and sensitizing the large under-penetrated mass”, concludes Ajay.

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