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Meet the Kashmiri engineer who bets on ecommerce despite internet shutdowns

Koshur Store, which sells selected items of local sellers to people across India, was founded by a Kashmiri engineer, Moris Adam. He believes in ecommerce even when the internet is down. Koshur Store achieved Rs 2.9 crore in sales in FY 2022.

Corona virus turned out to be a blessing in disguise for numerous ecommerce and mobile commerce titans, including Amazon, Flipkart, Zepto, and Swiggy. According to Rakuten Insights, over 59 percent of consumers polled stated they shopped online during the epidemic as a kind of social distance.

According to Worldpay FIS’s 2021 Global Payments Report, the Indian ecommerce sector is expected to expand 21 percent per year over the next four years.

While the COVID-19 epidemic boosted digital commerce in big cities, it also created possibilities in Tier II and III cities, as well as rural places where people did not have easy access to the internet. Srinagar-based digital marketplace Koshur Store, created by Moris Adam, a 23-year-old computer engineer, was one of the successful companies.

Moris learned about Kashmiri enterprises and connected with several merchants while building web sites.

Moris explains, “I decided to build an ecommerce site in Srinagar because the region’s penetration is still fairly low. Koshur Store, which launched in July 2019, is a curated digital marketplace that sources items from local sellers and sells them on its website.

The company began by selling in a variety of areas such as apparel, home care, small gadgets, and accessories. However, after only a month in operation, the Kashmir Valley experienced an internet outage due to the repeal of Article 370 of the Indian Constitution. Koshur Store’s operations came to an end as a result of the shutdown.

Moris extended the operations to service across India in response to the issue of delivering in the Valley. “To compensate for the lost profits, the founder took on more web development work for a wider range of enterprises while still maintaining Koshur Store.”

Moris used to perform a lot of freelancing work; there were a few foreign projects, and he also developed his institution’s website.

Running an online marketplace

Moris created versions of his current app and website that were compatible with the 2G network after internet restrictions were abolished in January 2020.

In May 2020, the startup will also resume local deliveries. During the COVID-19-led lockdowns, Koshur Store fulfilled 2,885 orders with an average ticket amount of Rs 800 in eight months after resuming operations, delivering 300 items each month. In 2021, the firm delivered 37,409 orders at an average ticket amount of Rs 1,000 each month, for a total of 3,000 orders. The firm also expanded its product offerings, now providing up to 30 categories with over 10,000 stock-keeping units (SKUs).

The business model and its prospects

Koshur Store, which began as a bootstrapped venture, received a Rs 5 lakh investment from Punjab Angel Network in 2021. In addition, the firm has its own delivery fleet of around 15 people operating over 25 delivery units.

These partners use third-party delivery companies to deliver across India. The business, however, also provides same-day delivery in Srinagar, Baramullah, Anantnag, and Budgam.

Koshur Store claims to deliver things within an hour and is now working to reduce delivery time in the Valley to 30-40 minutes. While Koshur Store ships throughout India, local deliveries account for 70% of the startup’s income. The firm achieved Rs 2.9 crore in sales in FY 2022, and it is now aiming for Rs 5 crore in the current fiscal year.

Moris’s toughest difficulty, though, is keeping the delivery executives engaged. Moris says that when he was in Chandigarh he observed a delivery partner with a Dominos box on his motorcycle. In Jammu and Kashmir, this culture still does not exist. “I’d want to bring that here,” Moris says.

Currently, the firm offers these partners incentives such as increased compensation for things fulfilled. Koshur Store hopes to accomplish 10,000 orders per month in the next 12 months by capitalizing on the growing demand for ecommerce and the expanding accessibility of the internet. In addition, the firm is expanding its categories and SKUs.


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