CNME editor Mark Forker secured an unique interview with Husain Makiya, CEO of YOUGotaGift, to learn how the corporate has fully revolutionized the gifting trade within the MENA area.
YOUGotaGift has established itself because the main market for digital reward playing cards within the Center East since its inception in 2013.
Remarkably, if the corporate’s CEO, Husain Makiya, had not encountered difficulties when he went on-line to purchase his buddy a present card 9 years in the past, then YOUGotaGift may by no means have been conceptualized.
Nonetheless, YouGotaGift was launched by Makiya and has loved phenomenal success over the previous few years.
CNME spoke with Makiya to study extra in regards to the firm’s unimaginable journey, its continued evolution and the significance of its new partnership with funds platform Tabby.
Makiya started the dialog by documenting the success YOUGotaGift is having fun with and outlining the corporate’s major aim.
“YouGotaGift’s fundamental aim is to attach the most important retail manufacturers with customers and companies. Our pay as you go reward playing cards are absolutely digital, that means you should buy them on-line and have them delivered by way of e-mail or SMS. We work with over 700 fashionable manufacturers reminiscent of Midday, Amazon, Carrefour and Jarir Bookstore throughout 20 classes starting from on-line buying, retail, hypermarkets and digital merchandise and serve round 2,000 corporations within the area with a attain of simply over 5 million customers in whole,” Makiya mentioned.
Makiya defined that the YOUGotaGift enterprise is split into 3 elements, the primary of which is the buyer enterprise, which he labels as client items.
“Our client enterprise is e-commerce for reward playing cards, the place customers can log on, purchase a present card and actually personalize that card and ship it to mates or household immediately. It is a enjoyable expertise with built-in comfort, however the expertise aspect is essential to us. As well as, group items are one other function of our client enterprise. It is rather fashionable with mother and father with regards to items for academics and has additionally generated big reputation with massive organizations for farewells and retirements,” mentioned Makiya.
The CEO of YOUGotaGift, defined the second a part of their enterprise, which he described as the primary a part of their B2B enterprise, within the type of loyalty rewards.
“Primarily, what we do on this house is act as a last-mile redemption associate for giant loyalty packages. So often the loyalty packages we cope with are with banks, TV corporations and airways. An important instance of this within the UAE is Etisalat’s Smiles program, a extremely fashionable loyalty program within the nation. In the case of redeeming your factors, you might be given the choice to redeem your collected factors for buying vouchers, and we activate and activate that class of buying voucher below that program. It is rather a lot API-based and we now have about 40 banking/telco companions with loyalty packages that we assist by way of redeeming factors,” mentioned Makiya.
The third aspect of YOUGotaGift, operations is what they name worker and buyer rewards, which, as Makiya identified, is primarily targeted on firms.
“Usually, corporations will place bulk orders to reward and acknowledge their staff for his or her efficiency, or use them in the event that they wish to interact with their prospects for a brand new promotion or buy marketing campaign. It’s a very helpful product pushed by a self-service portal the place corporations can place their orders and customise their reward playing cards. Moreover, they’ll share it inside their group or prospects in actual time. It is a quite simple and simple method to procure reward playing cards and ship them,” mentioned Makiya.
Makiya added that YOUGotaGift operates in each the B2B and B2C house and has a proposition for each side of the market and is targeted on rising its footprint within the area the place they’re current within the UAE, KSA, Kuwait, Bahrain . , Oman and Egypt.
As talked about above, the inspiration behind YOUGotaGift got here from Makiya’s personal buying expertise, however as he factors out beneath, the corporate has actually developed through the years and really rapidly moved away from its unique plans to capitalize on different alternatives they noticed rising inside the trade.
“I went on-line to purchase a present card for a buddy however could not discover a vacation spot for reward playing cards, which led me to begin researching how large the trade is on a world scale and the way early trade was throughout the MENA area. Right now, the reward card trade is value $800 billion and is predicted to succeed in $1.4 trillion by 2026, so it is a fast-growing market. After we began, we began as a pure client participant, we felt the area was very talked-about with retailers and the web penetration was phenomenally excessive. We began by launching a web site and listed a few of the finest fashionable manufacturers within the area, then we simply anticipated individuals to come back and assist themselves, however what we did not think about was that adoption could be gradual. Nonetheless, inside a really brief span of time, we turned to the B2B house and rapidly realized that there was a a lot larger alternative within the B2B house, particularly when an organization like Etisalat recognized and found our digital resolution for his or her wants.” Makiya mentioned.
When telecom large Etisalat was taking its first steps in repositioning itself as a digital participant, YOUGotaGift was in the correct place on the proper time to satisfy its wants.
“They have been at some extent the place they have been within the course of of fixing loyalty packages from merchandise to a digital expertise. The banks rapidly adopted Etisalat’s lead, so we rapidly recognized the chance. We constructed options, merchandise and APIs that instantly built-in into this new ecosystem, and what gave us an actual benefit was how early we moved into these packages; we have been in some ways virtually entrenched in these packages. Now we have grown these accounts by including extra manufacturers and value-added companies as a result of if you present such a quantity of companies to massive organizations, you might want to be certain your know-how is as much as scratch,” mentioned Makiya.
Makiya additionally reiterated the significance of delivering a seamless “expertise” in our new digital world, as we all know prospects have zero tolerance for unhealthy experiences or interactions with apps or companies.
“We intentionally constructed the know-how from the bottom up to have the ability to deal with such massive packages and did quite a lot of on-the-ground coaching with retailers and types in order that buy-in could be excessive when a buyer walks into the shop, and our buyer assist was second to none. Our focus is on the top consumer and gifting is a really emotional and delicate act, so if the expertise is poor, all the things fails,” mentioned Makiya.
The main focus of the dialog then shifted to the announcement of a partnership between YOUGotaGift and buying and fee app Tabby.
YOUGotaGift has teamed up with Tabby to develop customers’ capacity to make use of Tabby’s versatile fee options to separate the price of their purchases into interest-free funds.
Customers within the UAE and KSA can now store and pay later by way of Tabby on the YOUGotaGift cellular app – and this performance will quickly be accessible on the YOUGotaGift web site.
Makiya believes the partnership will allow YOUGotaGift to unlock even larger worth from their product portfolio.
“This partnership permits us to unlock even larger worth for our reward and fee merchandise.Past items, prospects are more and more utilizing eGift playing cards to price range or entry offers.By combining versatile fee choices with our multi-brandit is a rewardplaying cards, prospects can be extra engaged to purchasefor themselves and unlock tactical offersfrom their favourite manufacturers.”
Makiya concluded with a splendidly candid and insightful discuss that highlighted what actually units the corporate aside from different rivals out there.
“We have developed our enterprise and our first foray into the B2B house was with our loyalty rewards program, which was pushed largely via APIs — however then we moved into the company rewards program, so we took a really product-centric method. , and that led us to success. This focus has allowed us to construct nice relationships throughout the ecosystem and we now have arguably the widest catalog of manufacturers within the area now and we even have a unbelievable distribution community. That distribution community is absolutely vital as a result of retailers wish to promote their reward playing cards. , and we’re right here to assist them promote it, and our community of shoppers and loyalty packages is a really thrilling distribution community that each retailer desires to be part of in the present day,” concluded Makiya.