From times of yore, Indians have been known to gift cash. Not only would people gift currency notes cased in pretty envelopes on events like wedding, house warming, or even birthdays, but our grandparents would gift us cash whenever we visited them in summer vacations. Cash suited for all occasions because of the flexibility of the recipient to buy something of their choice (and necessity). It also proved easy for the person gifting it because they don’t have to ‘choose’ a gift, which can be a daunting task given the plethora of options available.

As times moved, such cash ‘transactions’ begun looking awkward. People got hesitant in giving and receiving cash, and this gaucherie was the spark behind the invention of gift vouchers. People would gift each other gift vouchers of designated amounts which could be used in the store/merchant that issued them. However, this model had two drawbacks: one, the gifter had to visit the store to buy a voucher, and two, it could be redeemed only in the same store. The fact that stores have multiple outlets is not much of a consolation.

That was so 20th century!

Welcome Badhai.in, a Web 2.0 way of gifting, that helps you avoid the awkwardness of gifting cash/cheques and fixes the disadvantages of traditional (read paper) gift vouchers. Buying and sending a gift voucher now involves four easy steps: choose an occasion, enter recipient details, add a personalized message, and pay for it.

Badhai.in eVouchers are delivered instantly over email and SMS, and can be used at a wide range of retail outlets as well as online stores. Also, it provides a flexibility in redemption as the recipient may either use a part of a voucher amount at a time for small purchases, or club multiple vouchers to enjoy bigger spends.

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Badhai can also be used by corporates to recognize and reward their employees, festival giftings, or sales incentives or on spot awards–basically gifts a company would like to bestow their employees with. All you need to do is to let Badhai.in know your budget and leave the rest to them, who will provide Badhai vouchers, through email and SMS to your people/channel partners/clients and other stakeholders; usable at a wide range of partner brands.

Badhai.in has been developed by eInsignia Infosoft Pvt Ltd, a Mumbai based product development company, founded by Ajay Pandey, aided by a 7-member team coming from various IITs and IIMs. Here is a conversation with Badhai.in (BI):

PI: Badhai.in is a traditional method of gifting brought online. I would like to understand the factors behind the conception of Badhai.

 

BI: Gifting in India has always been traditional and cliche. Choices have been limited and there is no way you know the gift was really adored by the recipient. We at Badhai felt that this needed to change so that gifting becomes more gratifying. With Badhai you are assured of a hassle free shopping experience with a wide variety of options to choose from. Badhai.in is based on primarily four premises:

1) Gift sender should have convenience while sending gift and must not break his head on what to send? Badhai.in solves this by allowing sender to choose an amount and not the brand.

2) Gift recipient should choose what he or she wants? This eliminates possibility of repeated gifts and gifts, which are not of the tastes. Badhai.in gives full spectrum of retail category to the user to choose from

3) Gifting across geography/instant gifting – Badhai.in is completely electronic and hence you can gift in approx 3 minutes. The gift will be delivered instantly without delay.

4) Partial contribution – Sender knows the choice of the recipient but doesn’t have enough money to contribute. So he can give partial amount and rest will be funded by the recipient.

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PI: Does eInsignia have other products in the pipeline, and how is eInsignia/Badhai funded?

BI: Badhai.in is the brand promoted by eInsignia. This is the only product as of now from the eInsignia’s stable. eInsignia is funded by promoters money. We are now talking to institutional funds for investment.

PI: How do you plan to generate revenue from the Badhai model?

BI: Badhai.in will be generating revenue primarily through the commission, we are getting from the retail brands.

PI: Future plans, apart from adding more stores in your clientele?

BI: Badhai.in claims to be totally green venture. We will be enabling it on Mobile. Also once the volumes are up, we will be integrating it in retail ERPs.

PI: What has been the traction so far?

BI: Badhai.in is currently focused on corporate segment. We are getting good response from corporates because of our business proposition, operational efficiency and control, which were earlier a big issue in corporate.

PI: Any other details/info you would like to share.

BI: In its revamped structure the design of the site has been modified as well as a new functionality added. Badhai.in now also enables individual C2C gifting. We feel that our value proposition and ease will attract the user to use Badhai.in for gifting purposes. We are bringing back the good old era of currency gifting, just that Badhai.in is not the currency but the next best thing to currency.

Very true, this may well be the next best thing to currency when it comes to gifting. There already exists Sodexo, an alternative currency, but only for the corporate-employee relation. Badhai.in goes way past by implementing a gifting platform that can be used for gifting in all (okay, most) kinds of relationships. Although in an indirect way, Badhai also has a competition with Airtel money, where anyone can gift anyone else any amount that can be used as an alternative currency. The list of merchants supporting Badhai.in eVouchers (Croma, Lifestyle,BigBazaar, pantaloons etc) is good given the young age of the company, but it needs to improve considerably to be really popular.


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