Remember running to local book markets at the start and end of each semester in college to buy textbooks? Money spent on buying these textbooks is not less than a king’s ransom for college students. Bangalore based Your Study Material can save you from running around and from spending big bucks on study material.
Your Study Material is a web portal with simple rent and read model tailored for college students. You could search for a book with title, category, publisher or directly enter the author and title of the book and place your order. In case a book is not available on the portal, user can fill a form and startup will get the book for you.
The minimum duration for which you can rent a book is six months and can be extended to a year, depending on your requirement. The service is available in Bangalore where it cover 100 colleges and in Guwahati where it caters to 5 colleges.
The startup charges original price of the book at the time of lending, rent is deducted at the time of returning the books and remaining difference is refunded. This is clever. Because if the student decides to keep the book forever, no one ends up losing money. Users also have an option to rent used books, in this case both the rent and the security amount is less in comparison to the new book.
If one plans to buy a rented book after using it for the whole semester he/she can just simply keep it, and the security money will be adjusted as the difference amount.
Since its inception in September 2011, portal has rented more than 5500 books. Free delivery is done for orders in colleges and additional Rs 50 are charged for delivering it on home.
Besides renting and buying, users can also sell books at 30%-40% of the the original cost to the portal. Their representatives will collect the books from your doorstep saving you the trouble at the end of the semester. For orders worth more than Rs 600, one can avail free copy of question papers.
The startup is tying up with courier services for providing delivery options in cities other than Bangalore and Guwahati. Also soon it will be launching an option where students can access the soft copy of college notes. This will probably be a winner.
In colleges, it is common practice when seniors move on to the next semester, they sell the old books to juniors at a discount. It’s quick and efficient. Senior comes to the juniors room, dumps a lot of books and says (sometimes a tad menacingly): take it for so much. Junior pays up & keeps the books. Deal done. No courier, delivery or calculating refund. There are also local shops that cater to the demand. We will have to wait and see if Your Study Material will make a difference. What could also be interesting to see is how well students take to e-books with a great reading application that can do notes, share comments and bookmarks etc. But here’s wishing them luck!