Cases

Creating a Business Plan for the Launch of an Online Exchange Service in India

Challenge

The client planned to launch an exchange service, based on a software technology that enabled on-line communities to offer their members exchange facilities for buying, selling and trading goods or services. The service in its current form was applicable to the Business to Consumer (B2C) and Consumer to Consumer (C2C) segment for providing a barter exchange service. However the technology could be customised to cater to the B2B segment by providing auction related services. The international site kicked off by being a destination site for barter exchange. Later, it gradually repositioned itself as a non-destination barter exchange service provider to the alliance partner?s destination site. The site already had about six C2C alliances in place, with a B2B portal in the pipeline catering to the ink industry. Their revenue model primarily revolved around advertising with a potential to generate transaction revenues and through the licensing of software. Thus, the client requested UC to answer the following:

  • Identify key C2C and B2C sites predisposed towards bid, buy or barter
  • Determine the feasibility of providing bid, buy or barter to the B2B segment
  • Determine the feasibility of licensing software application to technology providers
  • Prepare other aspects of a typical plan (like competition strategy, organisation structure etc.)

Our Approach

To form the business plan for the client, UC took the following steps:

  • Identified and categorised the products predisposed towards bid, buy or barter
  • Identified and categorised the target communities predisposed towards bid, buy or barter
  • Defined the action plan for the top management with relation to the target communities
  • Mapped the current and potential competition scenario
  • Evaluated the option of being a destination site vis-?-vis a non-destination service provider and provided recommendations for the same
  • Prepared technology architecture
  • Defined value propositions to different types of alliance partners
  • Evaluated the option of providing the service through a technology service provider or offer the same directly to the alliance partners
  • Identified the various revenue streams and evaluated the potential of each revenue stream
  • Defined the promotion plan
  • Defined the alliance plan
  • Designed the organisation structure and prepared brief job profiles
  • Defined an activity level implementation plan to be undertaken to meet the objectives of the business plan
  • Prepared high level financial projections based on the revenue and cost estimation

Impact

UC delivered a business plan to the client, along with an understanding of the B2B segment and an overview of the competition. The client also received a detailed implementation plan, including the financial projections based on its revenue and cost estimation.