The coronavirus lockdown has been devastating for many businesses. As virus ravages through cities and districts of Bangladesh with little sign of slowing down, many businesses struggle to find a path to surviving the lockdown. But a small fraction of tech startups companies is seeing a significant uptick in their business although many struggle to cope with the sudden surge in demands due to both a lack of preparations and the complete novelty of the situation.
Among the companies seeing meaningful growth in their business are companies that help consumers stay indoors such as online grocery delivery companies, telemedicine services, and then there are online education startups that are seeing increased demand for online courses and training. In this article, I’m going to list 6 companies that have been seeing an acceleration in their business amid the pandemic.
Timing and luck are two critical factors that affect the outcome of startups. Being able to be in the right place at the right time is luck. As Fred Wilson writes you eventually get lucky if you survive long enough because events happen in a time period and events bring fortune and misfortune. Like everyone of us, the pandemic has become a defining event for many tech startups in Dhaka and beyond. Many of these companies are certainly struggling to meet the increased demand in the market, but nonetheless they are in a far better position than the rest of the bunch who are struggling everyday to keep the lights on.
The leader in online grocery delivery in Dhaka has seen a spike in orders to the extent that it has been scraping to cope with delivering the orders on time. Chaldal works with essential items. The company has been playing a critical role in helping Dhakaites stay indoors amid the lockdown. There are a handful of companies operating in the on-demand grocery space and everyone suffers from managing a surge in orders. The best part of Chaldal is that the company has made a name for ensuring the stable pricing of critical essential grocery items despite the artificial price hike in the market.
Access to healthcare has become a critical challenge in Dhaka amid the coronavirus pandemic. Private doctor chambers are closed everywhere. People are not confident to visit hospitals amid the growing risk of getting infected. This has given rise to the telemedicine. Praava Health has seen a significant uptick in the number of telemedicine bookings in the past weeks. The company is also a part of the Government’s country-wide telemedicine healthcare initiatives amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
The safe food company has been on an upward growth path even before the pandemic. The pandemic has brought a new opportunity for the company to serve even a larger group of customers. The company says it has been seeing double-digit growth every week since the beginning of the pandemic. The number continues to accelerate.
Online education is one of the verticals that has benefited from the coronavirus lockdown. The e-learning platform Bohubrihi has seen its revenue to double in the month of lockdown. The company has also made several of its previously paid courses free to attract new customers.
Online medicine delivery has never looked this important any time before. Ousud.com, the online and offline pharmacy startup, has seen an extraordinary growth to the extent that the company has suspended taking orders through its website, although it continues to take orders on Facebook. Founded by Salman Ahmed, Sabbir Siddiqui, Dr. Istiaque Ahmed, and Bazlul Lutful, Ousud.com is a graduate of the ygap Accelerator program.
Olwel has been a unique company pre-pandemic. The company provides “essential doorstep healthcare service for patients who prefer to receive medical consultation at their home.” While Olwel has suspended its doorstep healthcare service due to circumstance, the company’s telemedicine service has taken off like anything. The company has also collaborated with a host of services providers such as on-demand ambulance services, on-demand medical testing services and so on that makes it even more relevant during this extraordinary time.