There are more than 10,000 entrepreneurs and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that group together in the different platforms and initiatives created during the COVID-19 pandemic to save their businesses.
From a bakery network, hardware stores and even stores are found in these digital spaces. Some sell through WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram and others on their own websites.
Jefresson Sánchez is the owner of the Pan Nuestro bakery, in the San Vicente de la Florida sector, in Quito. And it is part of the portal ‘Panaderías del Barrio’ , which registers more than 500 bakeries nationwide, 80 are in Guayaquil.
He says that in this pandemic it was released with home deliveries. “I have reached clients that I couldn’t, I use the platform all day and I have orders even at night. As a baker, I think that modern tools have helped me to get my artisan product to other places ”, he indicates.
This portal was developed on May 11 with the support of the company Moderna Alimentos. The site displays: business name, telephone numbers, address, if it has a delivery service and a product catalog.
How to register: ‘Panaderías del Barrio’
Enter the site https://www.panaderiasdelbarrio.com , select to register here and place personal data. At the end accept the terms and conditions and send request. Then a registration confirmation code will be sent to the cell phone.
The same dynamic has Ferrimax , an association of independent hardware stores in Ecuador, which created the site ferrimaxcerca.ec on April 24. It has registered 1,700 hardware stores and 300 professionals such as engineers, architects, and plumbing workers who offer their services.
Roberto De Stefano, director Ferrimax, says that this initiative aims at solving problems such as access to free information. “Due to COVID-19 hardware stores and related professionals are going through a very difficult situation. Most of them need to keep working now and don’t have online ordering portals like the big chains. We decided to act with a solution that facilitates the relationship between buyers and hardware stores ”, he explains.
Ferrimaxcerca.ec locates businesses by GPS and has the option to quote materials.
How to register: Ferrimaxcerca.ec
Enter the site https://ferrimaxcerca.ec/ , select to register, fill in information regarding the business such as trade name, ID or RUC, address, contact, location, hours, method of payment and if you make deliveries or not at home.
Another of the virtual spaces that aims at commerce in general is Todo más cerca , founded by Andrés Dueñas and Ricardo Mancero; ‘Salva un comercio ‘, from the Guayaquil Chamber of Commerce (CCG) and the Federation of Ecuador’s Chambers of Commerce (Fedecámaras); and ‘Mercado 593 Guayaco’ , a project of the Municipal Public Company for the Management of Innovation and Competitiveness (Epic), Municipality of Guayaquil and the company Contifico.
How to sign up: ‘Save a business’
Enter the site https://www.salvauncomercio.com/; then fill out a free registration form with information such as: business name, email, category, RUC or natural person, telephone, among others.
Everything closer brings together entrepreneurs and has 6000 registered establishments. Connects customers with businesses 1 km away. “The premise is to prevent people from crowding into supermarkets and help revive the economy of small and medium-sized companies, which have been forced to close their operations due to a lack of customers,” says Mancero.
How to sign up: ‘Everyone closer’
Access and registration to the platform is free and available nationwide. Interested establishments may register on the page https://www.todosmascerca.com/ by filling out a form with the following information: name, telephone, name and category of the business, opening hours, GPS location, among others.
Through this platform, products of various categories are offered: fish and seafood; meats, fruits and vegetables; prepared food and general groceries. In July they will hold a virtual fair.
In ‘Save a trade’ the products of the businesses paralyzed by the emergency are promoted. To date there are 1,710 registered businesses, 3,920 products on the website and 57 participating cities.
It runs from the end of March and requires merchants to offer promotions such as discounts or combos at preferential prices.
1300 enterprises group ‘Mercado 593 Guayaco’ , a platform that initially exhibits products from Greater Guayaquil (Daule, Durán, Samborondón and Guayaquil), although its scope increased throughout the province of Guayas.
36% of the registered businesses correspond to the production of products (jewelry, clothing, shoes); 22% are distributors; 21% food industry; 17% restaurants and 4% technical service.
How to register: ‘Mercado 593 Guayaco’
Enter https://epico.gob.ec/gyeselevanta-mercado593/; review requirements such as being less than 5 years old and then registering. Then the information is validated and the user is contacted. And so they will sell on the site: https://www.mercado593.com/ .
Kelly Morales, 23, owns Kellubracelets and sells bracelets, chains and other jewelry on the platform. “My venture is one year old and at the beginning it was not easy; However, my first clients were people from my family circle and little by little my brand became known. Despite the fact that currently the situation is not the best, I always thank each client, ”he says.
Meanwhile, since June 12, the Alliance for Entrepreneurship and Innovation (AEI) together with seven private sector organizations launched the Re-Emprende Tenderos program. It consists of supporting neighborhood stores with various products between $ 50 and $ 400 so that they can be stocked.
This procedure can be done four times and there is no interest charge for the products received. It only reimburses the given capital. Thus the shopkeeper increases his business with the profits.
The initiative aims to reach 300 ventures and continue with more provinces. They also provide free technical assistance, talks and training.
How to enroll: Re-start Shopkeepers
- Re-Emprende Tenderos sends free megabytes to the shopkeeper to participate in the program.
- This message will direct them to the official website where they will find educational content from the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).
- Inside the page they should read the educational content and take a test.
- Once the test is approved, an agent of the Re-Emprende Tenderos program will contact the shopkeeper to indicate that he is a creditor of the interest-free financing.
- If required, the grocer will be able to access this benefit up to 4 times in order for him to be able to generate his own capital and, once he has it, the support may reach other shopkeepers. (I)