By: Diego Gonzalez
Are you tired of depending on Facebook groups to try to buy textbooks for school? Think there should be a better way to sell books you don't need? There might be a better way with a new app available to Western students.
Izhaar Tejani, currently in his second year, is the co-creator and CEO of the company behind a new app called Snel, an app exclusive to Western. Snel lets you to take your books and upload them by scanning a barcode, allowing other students to find them and message you with offers. The difference? “It's faster,” says Tejani.
Snel is currently in its beta stage. Tejani initially developed the app with the intention of discovering the best way to buy and sell textbooks for students.
“The purpose for... a beta launch exclusively for Western Students is essentially to figure out what we we're doing right and what we were doing wrong. It wasn't our goal to make money, or get everyone to convert to Snel, it was for us to figure out what the consumers want and what they don't want and kind of package that all into a perfect product which we are working on in the background.”
Tejani believes that the app is better than the existing method of selling and buying used textbooks through Facebook groups. He argues that it is simpler and much faster.
The app was launched last month, he explains, “yeah, we launched a beta test in early September. It's only available to Western students right now. We hope we have enough users on our app by January for it to be functional across Canada and the U.S.”
Tejani had the idea for Snel because he wanted a more efficient buying experience and a “platform where entrepreneurs can reach out to their customers, manage their inventory, and track their sales in a more efficient manner”, not just here on campus, but all over the world.
“Many of [those] entrepreneurs use websites like kijiji, [or] OLX [which] is something that's popular in Brazil, India. But in my opinion those platforms are really out-dated and haven't been keeping up to modern day tech standards.”
Snel aims to branch out to be a marketplace for all types of things, aiming to “take over Kijiji,” says Tejani. The overall aim of Snel is to expand the company to surpass mere book exchange.
“We are making a web application and a companion mobile app, for iphone and ios, so it would be cross-platform and what it is right now, just for Iphones... we're working on this software where you as an individual can essentially open up a store online and sell whatever you want whether it be a book or electronics.”
Tejani explains that “especially in developing nations, there's independent shops, people becoming entrepreneurs, selling merchandise and such and they don't have an online platform to reach out to their customers.”
And in case you were wondering, Snel means “fast” in Dutch.