Hicolumn, an e-commerce Tech that gives merchants, big or small, especially small and medium enterprises (SMEs) the opportunity of leveraging the internet to serve or sell to their existing and prospective customers anywhere and anytime, without the customers physically visiting the shops opens on November 26, 2020. It promises enabling consumers to buy from shops that they would ordinarily prefer to buy from physically. The hi-tech company being a platform designed for consumers to buy from and within their immediate community of residence is set to create over 100,000 jobs before the end of 2021, and will bring about large-scale youth empowerment as well as increase significantly the patronage of locally made goods.
Hicolumn is a mobile app designed to give visibility to neighbourhood stores, showcase stores and connect the stores directly to their customers anywhere, anytime. It offers stores, merchants, SMEs that have existing and verifiable businesses, with physical structure the opportunity to become active participants in the e-commerce ecosystem within 30 minutes after download, and absolutely free of any registration charge. The App is poised to revolutionise the e-commerce space as stores and merchants do not need to have a website to leverage e-commerce and most importantly do not need to worry about delivery, as goods ordered by customers will be delivered to them by Hicolumn’s delivery partners without any delivery charge to the stores or merchants. With matchless qualities, the e-commerce Tech takes advantage of the non-adoption of the traditional commerce in the Africa online market by ensuring that customers’ usual places of shopping are made available to them, by making it possible for consumers to view and choose to buy from stores they already know, without physically going to the stores and still have their goods delivered within 20 minutes, with same quality, same price and faster than it would have been if they were to visit the stores physically.
The cutting-edge e-commerce marketplace is designed to take advantage of the weaknesses of the existing online market in Africa and the world at large, thus redefining its scope and operations with unparalleled services aimed at reducing the threat that the current e-commerce system poses to SME’s survival, due to loss of sales and which has seen high number of stores run out of business. The Founder, Hicolumn, Uche Elekwachi, said the platform combines the power of three Apps into one unique e-commerce ecosystem comprising the Hicolumn Customer App, Hicolumn Merchant App and Hicolumn Delivery App. The three Apps are connected together and work as one Enterprise Resources Programme for real comfort and quality convenience.
Established by Hicolumn Technologies Limited, the biggest e-commerce Tech provides the complete sense of security and assurance which has been lacking in online trade for so long. Benefits accrued to merchants and stores partnering with Hicolumn on the e-commerce Tech include increased profitable sales; reduced cost of operation with less than five employees; proper inventory management; and elimination of threat posed by the current e-commerce system. Others include empowering merchants with the same capacity of an e-commerce global giant; customers’ retention on full scale; reduction of operational cost; business enhancement through effective online promotion; increased merchants’ focus on core operations; and opportunity for massive promotion and customer acceptability.
Moreover, Hicolumn allows only merchants and stores that have traceable physical structures or locations; with verifiable business registration and corporate bank accounts or business bank accounts; and with quality goods. With over 126 million internet users, there exist opportunities for the growth of the nation’s e-commerce sector which was estimated at $13 billion in 2018, and in this period of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, more Nigerians have resorted to online shopping, thus making it lucrative.