Pricepally was founded in 2019 by Nigerian couple Mosunmola Lawoyin and Luther Lawoyin. It kicked off in Lagos in November 2019 after a brief pilot.
The idea for the startup came after Mosunmola analysed the family monthly expenses and realized that a huge chunk of it went into food. They discovered that a number of people had the same challenge and decided to do something about it.
“The idea came up late last year. After three months of data gathering of my family expenses by my wife, we discovered we spent over half of our income on food monthly,” Luther Lawoyin said.
“More research made us understand how much of a huge problem this was across Africa and other developing nations. We decided to solve this problem by buying in bulk with other families, which helped to reduce our monthly spend by as much as 25 per cent. After this advantage was proven, we decided to add the technology layer to improve it and be able to serve more people.”
The pally option in Pricepally
Pricepally allows people to buy goods in bulk in order to get it at a cheaper price. People can come together to buy foodstuffs in bulk if they cannot afford the item on their own.
A significant advantage of Pricepally’s model is that anyone who wants to pally with others for an item does not have to wait for the others to pay before s/he can pay for his or her share and have it delivered.
“You can buy in bulk (add to cart) or share bulk with others (pally). Please note that you don’t have to wait for a pally to be completed to get your share delivered. We deliver once you pay.”
If the people in the pally group want to pay at once and have it delivered to a central location, the startup makes that possible. The flexibility of buying in bulk as an individual, or buying in bits as a part of a pally group and still saving money on cost is what makes the startup’s approach to solving this problem unique.
How Pricepally uses tech to deliver its service
Pricepaly applied its technology into the e-commerce aspect of the business. The startup has deployed a web app as well as a mobile app for the purpose of making its goods accessible and available to people in different parts of the country.
Besides making sure that anyone anywhere can see the foodstuffs it has to offer, people can shop and pay through the web app or android and iOS apps.
The pros and cons of the Pricepally app
User experience for the Pricepally app shows that for most people, the app clearly meets their need of ordering for bulk produce. A survey of the feedbacks given on the Playstore shows that people find the app easy to use especially when selecting items, pallying and making payments for the goods ordered.
I checked out the app to see if it is as easy to use as the reviews showed. Making selections was easy because the images are big enough that they provide a clear visual representation of what the item is.
It got confusing at the point where I wanted to pally, however, because there are two options for pallying. The user can select an open pally or a closed pally, and as a first-time user, it was not immediately clear what the difference between the two was.
After trying out both options, I found that a closed pally created for foodstuffs will only be visible to the friends and people who follow the creator of the pally. The open pally will be visible to anyone who shops with Pricepally.
If you are using the web app, you may also experience instances when a page you click on loads a programming error page like the one below. The scenario occurred for two different links on the page, however, after clicking the link again, the expected page loaded properly.
Most of the negative reviews for the startup’s service were given on account of the deliverymen who handled the last-mile delivery of the items ordered. As Abari-Ojuroye Zainab said, “…only problem was a very rude and uncouth driver but he won’t stop me from ordering again when I need to.”
Another less favourable review was given because the delivery man did not pronounce the name of the startup properly and got the user confused.
Funding and startup growth
Pricepally has raised 2 funding rounds since it launched in November. Greentec capital announced the investment of an undisclosed amount into the startup on July 6.
It is also a part of the Westerwelle Young Founders Programme. The startup participated in the French-German AyadaLab incubator and accelerator programme. It has also been part of the venture scaling Bootcamp at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston.
Pricepally won Foodtech500 global company by Forward Fooding.
Apps offering similar service
In Nigeria, there are other apps that provide services similar to what Pricepally offers. Some of these are Bodija Market, the Marketfoodshop, Foodlocker, and Nkataa. They allow people to make bulk purchases of foodstuffs and have them delivered to a preferred location.
Like Pricepally currently operates, most of the competitors listed above also operate within specific states of Nigeria. Bodija Market operates in Ibadan, Nkataa functions in Abuja, Foodlocker operates in Lagos, while Marketfoodshop operates in and outside of Lagos state. Unlike Pricepally, they do not offer the pally option.
If saving cost and purchasing in bulk are major considerations for your foodstuff shopping, you can consider shopping on Pricepally.
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