We live in a world full of stuff. We all have stuff that we don’t use anymore but don’t want to throw out because they are still in perfectly usable condition. There really isn’t an easy way to sell these things and to recoup some of the money spent on them.
What about an simple and enjoyable way to sell the things in life that you don’t use anymore? Meltoo, a mobile app for a social classifieds marketplace with built-in instant messaging, has now stepped in to change this issue. Reaching the semi-finals of MIT Arab competition which will take place on April 16 in Kuwait. Barakabits had a brief talk with Ahmed Medien, the co-founder of Meltoo:
1) How will this competition help you in reaching your goals?
We (the co-founders) attended MITEF last year and benefitted from that experience. This year, we wanted to give the younger members of our team an opportunity to learn and to benefit from the competition the same way we did last year. So instead of the co-founders attending, 2 of our promising young team members will be representing Melltoo.
2) What skills do you have that will help you get over difficult times in growing your business?
Without a doubt, the most important qualities of an entrepreneur are resilience and resourcefulness. When times get tough, we keep our heads up and look for new ways to accomplish our goals and overcome difficulties.
3) If money was no object, what would you do with Melltoo in the coming year?
Money is not usually the problem. If you build a strong business and a good team, money follows. We are growing at an incredible pace and maintaining that momentum is top priority for us. In June, we will launch our payment and delivery services which will further ease and facilitate the buying and selling process; Melltoo effectively becomes the guarantor of peer-to-peer transactions thereby bringing trust back to the marketplace. By the end of the year, we should have rolled out these services in a number of verticals in the UAE, including kids stuff, fashion, m-boutiques, and mobiles. By next year, we intend to roll out these same services in Qatar and Saudi Arabia (where we are also gaining significant traction organically).
4) What’s makes Melltoo special?
Where else can you buy something used, directly from the owner, with a money-back guarantee? Where else can you sell something directly to the buyer without ever having to meet him or leaving your home? Melltoo provides an end-to-end service that helps buyers and sellers focus on what they want to buy and sell without having to deal with logistical headaches like payment and meeting the other party.
5) What do you want to be known for? What legacy would you like to leave behind?
We want to contribute in some way to entrepreneurship and economic revivalism in the region. A lot of the issues in the region can be minimalized by meaningful activity among the youth. And truly, for those who have it in them, entrepreneurship is a worthwhile occupation.
6) Have you had good support from your community? If so, from whom?
We’ve had incredible support from our community including other startups who’ve shared what works for them and what doesn’t. We’ve had the support of in 5 Innovation Hub who’ve given us opportunities to grow by subsidizing some of the costs of doing business in Dubai. We’ve had the support of Turn8 who were one of the first who believed in us and backed up belief with action by investing in us. We’ve had the support of Womena, a women’s angel investor network who also were among the first to give us a vote of confidence by investing in us. We’ve also had the support of a number of mentors and angel investors who recognized our determination, supported us with their advice, and let us go about building our business.