Social commerce the focus for young entrepreneur

10 April 2012

In this the age of Gumtree and bidorbuy, does the world really need another site on which to sell or buy stuff? UCT electrical and computer engineering student Ivan Cadri Togboa thinks so.

The young entrepreneur launched his exclusive-to-UCT classifieds website, in January this year. What sets ripplesale apart is that it has the needs and pockets and time constraints of students in mind.

The site, explains Cadri Togboa, caters for students looking for bargains and who find scouring endless notice boards around campus rather tiresome. It is designed to facilitate organised online interaction between students so that trading occurs much more efficiently, he says.

"It should make it much quicker and easier for the person who's selling."

Cadri Togboa explains that ripplesale's social commerce aspect stems from the idea that trade would take place within an online social network. So it sort of aims to roll Facebook and eBay into one - hence the site's sales pitch that it's not just about social networking and classifieds; it's "more like social commerce".

It is this feature that the creator believes will make stand out from the crowd.

"The main catch was to have social interaction," he says. "You have people messaging, suggesting and trading with each other based on events in their community, and so on."

While traffic to the site is not as heavy as he had hoped, Cadri is convinced that ripplesale will catch on and become a staple for student life at UCT and beyond.

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