Jahanzeb Bakali, Co-Founder, and Marketing Director, CloudamartJahanzeb Bakali, Co-Founder, and Marketing Director
The COVID-19 pandemic has undoubtedly pushed the world into a hyper-digitalized reality. While digitalization was not a particularly new phenomenon, the global health crises catalyzed the ongoing digital revolution into every facet of day-to-day life. A burgeoning question among thought leaders is, how digitalized and connected will our future be? “Considering the current pace of digitalization, the day is not far when one can book an Airbnb, schedule a ride to the hotel, and order food to the resort, all in a single application,” says Jahanzeb Bakali, co-founder and marketing director of Cloudamart, a Canadian cloud e-commerce startup that is focused on realizing this very vision. Building on its cloud marketplace for retailers, Cloudamart is incorporating features like food delivery, ride-sharing, courier services, property booking, and medicine purchasing, all in one app.

A Proven Recipe for Success

Notably, what underpins Cloudamart’s competencies in the e-commerce segment is the company’s prior experience as a retailer. Initially, Cloudamart (then known as Fresh To Go) operated as an online grocery platform catering to Toronto with many close-knit partnerships across the city’s retail arena. Fresh To Go quickly rose to prominence due to its focus on perishable goods, which helped boost its popularity among consumers and led to the establishment of a brick-and-mortar store. At the same time, it developed a cloud platform to manage its inventory, warehousing, and logistics processes effectively. Subsequently, with the powerful e-commerce benefits of the platform, the company established itself as one of the first online stores to offer same-day order delivery for both perishable and non-perishable goods. These cumulative efforts empowered Cloudamart to generate $1.5 million in revenue during its first year of operation.

This shift to the cloud proved immensely valuable for Cloudamart. Over time, the company’s team recognized how numerous small retailers—struggling to manage the unpredictable changes in their marketing, insurance, goods transport, and delivery-related processes—could benefit from the necessary technology stack for impactful e-commerce services. “Taking a leaf from our own success story, we wanted to connect local Canadian sellers with their customer community in a digitalized fashion,” states Bakali. This understanding pushed Cloudamart to pivot from its existing business and focus on developing a dedicated retail technology platform for other merchants in the Toronto area. Today, Cloudamart leverages its e-commerce experience and helps retailers in the Ontario region digitalize their stores and scale their businesses to source and deliver products on-demand.

Cloudamart’s Business Model

Cloudamart’s unique business model takes every stakeholder of a modern retail business (the vendor, delivery executive, and end consumers) into consideration. It connects physical stores with gig workers to facilitate timely product delivery and improve the local economy. Cloudamart understands that most gig workers opt for driver jobs to earn financial independence and thus, offers additional benefits like milestone-based incentives to increase user loyalty. Through these intuitive payment opportunities, gig workers can make extra money on top of their fixed hourly salary by completing a certain number of tasks within a stipulated timeframe.
Apart from milestone incentives, Cloudamart offers dental and healthcare consultations as well as massage and chiropractor sessions, which are directly available on its e-commerce platform.

Similarly, Cloudamart takes care of its vendor partners with utmost sincerity. The company arms every partner with free mobile devices and other tools necessary to enhance their ability to simplify the tracking of vital day-to-day tasks and run their virtual operation. Cloudamart also handles the marketing for these partners and makes announcements about new vendors on its retail app, ensuring customer traction for its clients—right from the get-go. Besides, Cloudamart follows a same-day payout principle to keep its partners happy. While vendors need to wait for a certain period before receiving their online earnings when working with other cloud aggregators, Cloudamart partners receive their due earnings every 48 hours. Notably, even drivers working with Cloudamart enjoy the same benefit and get their payments within a few hours of completing their day’s task. This emphasis on delivering benefits that address the prevalent issues of its vendor partners or delivery executives sets Cloudamart apart from its contemporaries.
  • Taking a leaf from our own success story, we wanted to connect local Canadian sellers with their customer community in a digitalized fashion

Crafting Success Where It Matters the Most

Cloudamart’s move toward the cloud marketplace proved extremely time-appropriate during the pandemic as it forced brick-and-mortar stores to start selling their products online. Throughout the pandemic, Cloudamart’s platform became a necessary avenue for retailers wanting to ensure a business continuum, helping them bypass physical disruptions with cloud-based e-commerce. Cloudamart also aided retailers by managing ancillary activities like online marketing and promotion, inventory and order management, as well as accounting through its solution. Unlike many aggregator companies like UberEats or DoorDash that charge 50 to 60 percent partnership commission, Cloudamart maintains a very reasonable commission of 10 to 20 percent.

The positive impact of Cloudamart’s capabilities is highlighted by a successful client engagement during the pandemic. A grocery store in Scarborough, Ontario, partnered with Cloudamart to cope with the paradigm-shifting disruptions. For this customer, Cloudamart’s team began the engagement by gaining an understanding of their roadblocks before creating an impactful marketing campaign that addressed their organization-specific needs and demands. Cloudamart also invested up to $5,000 into running a small sales campaign on Black Fridays for the grocery store. These efforts ultimately helped them generate revenue worth $65,000 when most retailers were experiencing never-before-seen levels of consumer disengagement.

The Road Ahead for Cloudamart

Having set itself as an industry leader with solid competencies, Cloudamart has a much larger vision for society’s digital future. Cloudamart aims to create a free-to-use super app where consumers can log in and execute multiple day-to-day functions. The app will have distinct functionalities covering grocery, food, medicine ordering or ride, property, and courier booking besides phone-as-a-service. The super app is expected to replace the need to use multiple apps and streamline the entire digital experience. During this endeavor, Cloudamart created Cloud Coins, a loyalty incentive that end-consumers can earn through their use of the super app and reuse for booking rides or ordering food, groceries, and retail products. Moving forward, Cloudamart will play a crucial role in shaping the digitalized future of the retail arena.