Great financial rewards lie at the Bottom of Pyramid, said Prof. C.K. Prahalad who gifted us the acronym BoP.
Could this also be an opportunity to turn the fortunes of 20 million families, we wondered! With this thought was born Yaanam.
Yaan means Vehicle but we gave it a spin and coined a new word Yaanam which means Vehicle for Social Change.
IMPACTING 20 MILLION FAMILIES: Yaanam is a vehicle that will change the fortunes of drivers of autos, taxis, e-rickshaws, vans, buses, trucks, etc. and of e-commerce delivery executives. Together, they number 20 million (families) who are victims of corruption at every step, who face public and government apathy, fall prey to exploitation by the markets and stare at a dead end career with nothing to look forward to in life.
PLATFORM FOR TRADE UNIONS
To give them hope and a life worth living, we have built for them an App-based social media platform that also comprises a suite of tools for their trade unions. This makes unions numerically strong, financially sound, transparent in functioning, pro work and member-focussed. Such unity through unions, with handholding from Yaanam, will help end drivers’ exploitation, resolve their regulatory issues and improve lives.
TAPPING COMMERCIAL POTENTIAL
On the commercial side, the ecosystem of commercial vehicles together with monetisable home shopping by drivers is a disorganised market worth ₹3,60,000 crore p.a. It remains untapped by the startups due to complex regulatory regime, a difficult target group and politicisation. In addressing this market, while saving rupees for the drivers, Yaanam protects them against fraudulent deals, counterfeit products and shady middlemen.
A yearlong period in 2016-17 was a period of much upheaval in India’s paratransit industry. Millions of anguished cab drivers raised a lot of noise but there was no cohesion, no unified direction and, alas, no clear objective. Thus, a new idea was born as a pilot project – which later became Yaanam – to test the depth of the drivers’ desire to get together for a common cause. Pleasantly, it received great reception.
Using the learning from the 2017 experience, development work on the app started in early 2019 as a not-for-profit venture. But owing to certain reasons, in mid-2019, we decided to make it a social-impact, for-profit company. Thus, Yaanam Infotech Pvt. Ltd. was incorporated on 20 June 2019.
The company is bootstrapped and we are now preparing to raise ₹1-3 crore immediately (Oct 2021) and approx. ₹25 crore by around July 2022. Interest from investors is welcome.