Quick Cart Africa Inc., a Kenyan-based e-commerce startup is introducing an app that delivers your groceries right to your doorstep in 10 minutes! The platform seeks to solve a critical issue in Africa’s food supply chain: post-harvest loss while reshaping grocery delivery and sustainability.
The startup is privileged to have the backing of Harvard Innovations and an array of seasoned industry experts. This alliance not only provides strategic support but also aids in fundraising efforts.
While speaking to Techweez, Joel said Dominique Aubry-Morgan – Principal at Pixel Recess, a key player in this collaboration, has been pivotal in helping us conceptualize expanding into new market frontiers. Their expertise is instrumental in our journey toward growth and innovation.
According to a report by Goobjoog News, post-harvest loss accounts to $ 4 billion in Africa annually with the World Food Programme describing it as a leading cause of food insecurity globally. According to the WFP, 1.3 billion tons of “all food produced for human consumption” lost or wasted. There is a need to address this loss and wastage, especially in developing markets where most local retailers lack special storage to store their excess inventory.
Quick Cart seeks to reduce the wastage or loss of food experienced between the harvesting and consumption supply chain. To achieve this, the startup is leveraging Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) models to carry out demand forecasting for fresh produce. By using insights gained from demand forecasting, Quick Cart can then advise merchants on what decisions to make regarding their offerings.
The post-pandemic era brought transformative changes in the digital shopping experience, particularly, when more people adapted to shopping online. Quick Cart differs from other platforms as it boasts of a 10-minute delivery time once you order which according to its co-founder, Joel Mutua, the company has continuously delivered within this time.
The Quick Cart platform has been live since January 2023 with the web and both the Android and iOS apps. The startup ensures customers get fresh produce by sourcing from local merchants. Quick Cart currently covers three locations in Nairobi: Hurlingam, Kileleshwa and Kilimani with plans to expand to the whole of Nairobi.
A seamless grocery shopping experience
You can access the Quick Cart platform on the web as well as on the app. The platform’s app is available for download from the Google Play Store for Android and the App Store for the iOS version. Once you’ve created your account you can start shopping through diverse offerings from grocery, to meat, dairy products, cereals and spices.
The whole shopping experience is seamless from the on-boarding process to checkout. Quick Cart complements this process with a 10-minute delivery right to your doorstep!
Creating social impact through partnerships
As more startups are coming up with solutions to Africa’s challenges, there is a concern that most of these SMEs are building in isolation. According to a LinkedIn post by Peter Enyinnaya David, this poses some major issues stagnating the growth of said SMEs. Startups and young ventures are encouraged to seek collaborations with the community as well as other players in the space.
Quick Cart is targeting community-led growth through partnerships with local farmers and retailers (Mama Mbogas). Joel Mutua, co-founder of Quick Cart has said that they are not removing intermediaries in the supply chain rather they seek to connect local retailers to farmers. Joel explained that the partnerships in place with intermediaries (connecting retailers to farmers and in addition connecting the retailers with customers) do not affect the pricing of the goods available on the platform.
By using AI and ML, the e-commerce platform is providing data insights to local retailers benefitting them with a deeper understanding of their customers hence allowing them to make informed decisions. In addition, Quick Cart is providing Mama Mbogas with a larger potential customer base as users can order from the diverse catalog on both the web and mobile apps.
According to Quick Cart, since going live, merchants who have joined the platform are already seeing an increase in their revenue.
Founding Quick Cart Africa Inc.
While speaking to TechWeez, Joel Mutua, co-founder of Quick Cart, said he draws inspiration to build a scalable company from his late mother who used to deliver fruits and vegetables to schools. Joel, who would sometimes accompany her, said, “I’ve dedicated my life to building a scalable company that is going to deliver groceries so that I can build on the legacy that is going to live beyond me and my mom.”
Drawing lessons from first-hand experiences, Joel and Rediet Kassahun, co-founder and COO of Quick Cart, came up with the idea for Quick Cart to solve gaps in the convenience and affordability of e-commerce solutions for food.
“The three points we are trying to address include affordability of fresh farm produce, convenience for every household,” Rediet who has worked in import and export in her home country – Ethiopia said, “and the last is building a one-stop shop for all your grocery needs”.