In a small office nestled in Powai’s Heera Panna complex are five men in their mid-twenties, each hunched over a laptop. No, they’re not playing a supremely intense round of League Of Legends (although that does sound like fun; hey – weekend’s here!); they’re working round the clock to develop, market and promote their newly launched app, Grabstr.
For those of you that didn’t read our earlier piece on it, Grabstr is an app in Mumbai that provides users with daily deals at various popular restaurants across the city. One has to simply download the app, log on to it through Facebook or Google+ and scroll through the various deals that they have each day. Grabstr has paired up with a range of restaurants which have ‘pop up offers’ that offer anything from a certain percentage off your meal to a free drink. The user simply has to show the restaurant their Grabstr ‘ticket’ (that they’ll get by selecting offers on the app) and they’re good to go! Here’s what some recent offers on the app looked like:
“We were going out one day and were looking for restaurants on Zomato,” said Adit Dave, one of the founders to us, while explaining how the idea of the app was conceived. “There were so many options that it got a bit confusing; we thought, why not do something which gives people a few great choices to choose from?” And thus, Adit, along with his school friends Rohit Lala and Ankit Moorjani quit their corporate jobs early this year to begin their dream of starting a start-up. And, Grabstr was born; an invention that is like app manna from heaven for foodies who are always on the lookout for a bargain or two.
Soon into its conception, the three founders brought in Darshan Pania and Rohit Haryani (of The Hungry Mumbaikar fame). Essentially, Grabstr is propelled by a core team of these five along with a few interns here and there.
Being a new app, the founders are working hard to market their product. “We’re choosing a unique way to market the app,” said Ankit when we asked why we hadn’t seen Grabstr in print news or received texts promoting it. Instead, Grabstr is being marketed on the social media community, particularly through foodies with large Instagram profiles, as the team at Grabstr believe that it will reach an app savvy, tech aware audience. Browse through your favourite Mumbai food Instagram accounts (Fat Foodies World, Food Hangover Mumbai and Instafoodie) and you’ll find that they’re all talking about Grabstr at one point or the other.
View this post on Instagram
@Grabstr is a real-time app that lets you grab last-minute lucrative deals and offers, and explore events at handpicked restaurants, bars and cafes, daily! So now, you can find new offers every day and save on your dining expenses! Also, grabbing deals and dining is now hassle-free! Just show up at the restaurant and avail the deal using our in-app ticket. Download the @Grabstr app now! It’s available on Google Play and coming soon on iOS. Check out @Grabstr's bio for the download link. #fatfoodies #Grabstr #ExploreDaily #DownloadNow #Android #GooglePlay #App #Deals #Mumbai #Food #FoodGram #Foodie #FoodLover #FoodPorn #Foodgasm #InstaPic #PicOfTheDay #LikeForLike #Like4Like #Likes4Likes #LikeBack #Love
They also host bloggers’ meets, where they gather together the food community at some of Mumbai’s favourite restaurants. Through these meets, foodies are able to better understand the app and enjoy some great food. The marketing technique is clearly working as photographs from these meets garner hundreds of likes.
Before you get too envious, know this; from next week Grabstr will be conducting competitions that will allow lucky users to win a free meal at some of the best restaurants they’ve partnered with. Simply download the app, participate and cross your fingers and hope some free food is coming your way!
“Before we launched the app, we wanted to make sure that there were no bugs and glitches,” said Rohit Lala explaining the process of conceptualising the app. Indeed, when we went through the app, we found it marvellously simple to use.
“One of the biggest challenges we’ve faced so far is getting restaurants used to the technology,” said Adit. However, Rohit Haryani adds that the restaurants have overall been appreciative of Grabstr and its premise. It allows the restaurants to get more impulsive and creative with their deals and extend their customer reach.
View this post on Instagram
Get ready to save massively through the lucrative offers, exciting deals and find out what's happening in Mumbai on the Grabstr app with our growing list of partner restaurants, bars and cafes! So what are you waiting for? Get the Grabstr app now and Explore, Daily! Check link in bio. #Grabstr #ExploreDaily #DownloadNow #Android #GooglePlay #App #Deals #Offers #Mumbai #MumbaiLocal #MumbaiDiaries #Food #FoodGram #Foodie #FoodLover #FoodPorn #Foodgasm #NomNom #InstaPic #PicOfTheDay #LikeForLike #Like4Like #Likes4Likes #LikeBack #Love #InstaGood #Mumbai #MumbaiFoodie
What restaurants can you expect to find on Grabstr? The team tells us that they’ve focused on “pockets” which food lovers normally gravitate to. There’s Bandra (naturally), Andheri, which is opening its doors to more and more fun restaurant spaces and Lower Parel, the home of a large variety of restaurants and an event larger crowd of hungry corporates. In the future, they confide that they hope to expand their reach into South Mumbai (say hello to offers at The Pantry and Cafe Churchill, perhaps?) and as far as Navi Mumbai. The love of food can never be confined to one location, after all.
Talking about their future plans prompts us into asking that cliché yet must-be- asked question; “Where do you see yourselves in the future?” Their answers vary from expanding their restaurant base, developing their app to include more features and aiming for a user base of 10,000 customers.
At present, however, they’re happy with what they’ve created. “It’s great that we’ve been such close friends for so long, and that we’re on the same wavelength” said Ankit. Being among like-minded individuals makes for a pleasant work atmosphere. Darshan agrees, commenting that he’s happy he choose to leave his corporate job and take the plunge into this innovative start up. We’re sure the plunge will pay off. In fact, we’re sure it already has.
Download Grabstr on Android through Play Store. Visit Grabstr’s website here.