OjaExpress, an e-commerce startup in Chicago founded by two Nigerians, has been selected as part of the Techstars Kansas 2020 cohort. The startup runs its operations in the United States.
The startup was founded by Boyede Sobitan and Fola Dada, both based in the US after they realised that ethnic and cultural grocery items needed by immigrants are not catered to as priority on the major e-commerce platforms available.
While there are shops that stock on these much-needed items, the reach of each of these shops is small and as such, not every immigrant who needs these products can access them.
“There are so many immigrants in the US that are underserved, and many of the stores that service their needs don’t have the technology and capabilities to provide the same level of services as larger chains- we hope to fill this gap and alleviate the pain point for both with our solution,”Fola Dada, CTO/Co-Founder of OjaExpress
This is the problem that the duo set out to solve with OjaExpress. Vendors who sell items like leaves, seeds, spices, nuts, and general ingredients for different traditional meals are onboarded onto the online market. Whenever shoppers purchase products, delivery of the items is arranged through the drivers who register on the platform.
The founders started with Nigerian food ingredients but realizing that immigrants from other countries face the same challenge, the platform broadened its offering to include groceries from other countries. Delivery of the items is done on the same day, making it possible for people to plan their traditional meals into their daily activities.
The startup was founded in 2015, and has since launched an android and iOS app to make its services more accessible to users on their smartphones.
As the company continues to grow, being part of the Techstars 2020 cohort will open it to mentorship and strategic partnerships from the Techstars global family. OjaExpress is one of 10 startups selected for this year’s accelerator.
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