This Odia boy’s vehicle rental startup promises to take you to your dream destinations
An adventure tour to Ladakh on a Royal Enfield or a car ride from Delhi to Goa will no longer require running around tour agents and vehicles dealers. An innovative startup, AskChimp, promises to do that for you.
The venture is an online rental company to list and hire motorcycles, cars and even bicycles without paying the additional overhead expenses that accompany a customary bike or car rental service.
The seven-month-old startup has already provided car and bike rental services to 5,000 people across the country.
Founder of AskChimp, 23-year-old Odia youth Sidharth Das, came up with the idea of the venture during commuting to his office. A mechanical engineer from KIIT University, Bhubaneswar, he is currently employed with an IT firm at Pune and his job required frequent travelling. While hiring a cab everyday was not an affordable option, Sidharth looked for alternatives like car pooling or renting a two-wheeler. Failing to find any such options, he decided to launch an online platform where renting cars, motorcycles and bicycles can be done easily not just for one day, but for months together. Helping him in the venture were three of his friends – Kishan Mishra, Biswanath Krishna and Aishwarya Jain – all engineers by profession. The four invested $3600 for setting up the AskChimp website, its server and social media branding of the startup through Bootstrap (an online platform for developing projects on web).
“We work as an aggregator for vehicle dealers and vehicle renters. We list vehicle dealers’ rides on our website along with the price and all other necessary details. When a user visits our website looking to hire a bike or car, he can search around his location and get a list of rides available in his locality. Then he would fill up a form providing the pickup date and drop off date along with pick up location. We connect him with one of our partners in his nearest location and settle the renting process. For every booking from AskChimp, we charge 10% of the total rent,” says Sidharth.
The startup has collaborated with bike and car dealers from across the country to take the business forward. “So far, we have collaborated with Kashmir Bikers in Jammu, Stonehead Bikes in Delhi and Snapbikes in Pune. We have also tied up with tour operators in Goa, Gujarat, Chandigarh and Rajasthan,” says Sidharth.
AskChimp services are currently available in Jammu & Kashmir, New Delhi, Chandigarh, Gujarat, Goa, Pune and Rajasthan.
Sidharth says the vehicle rental sector is growing rapidly in the country when it comes to tourism and travel. As far as India is concerned, the country is a leading market for car sharing in the world followed by China and the US.
His clientele mostly includes college and tech graduates and the most popular destinations for which the vehicles are being hired for are Ladakh, Rann of Kutch, Lonavala, Bangalore and Goa.
“We are in talks with ride dealers in Bangalore, Mumbai and Chennai to extend our services to those locations,” he added.
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