- Chopp.vn is the Instacart of Vietnam with the mission to change the shopping behavior of more than 100 million people
- Established in 2016, Chopp's revenue in the very first year was 275 million VND. By the end of November 2017, revenue increased three-fold to 788 million VND ($35,000).
- The annual user’s growth rate is 180% as of November 2020
- Chopp has raised over 11 billion VND in funding (USD 500,000).
- With its partners, a network of hundreds of thousands of small stores and supermarkets, Chopp provides products to customers at the same or even lower price than the market
- At the same time, customers also have more product choices than they do when they just go to a store or supermarket
Established 4 years ago with only a few employees, Chopp now has about 20 office staff and 40 part-time delivery staff. Chopp currently partners with about 40 supermarkets. These are both large and small stores in Ho Chi Minh City. Chopp commits to deliver within 1 hour when customers request to buy things at a store.
Truong Nguyen founder of Chopp, has over 10 years of business experience in the US and Canadian markets. He was a cofounder of 2 start-up projects. “I had an idea about Chopp.vn for a long time, it was around 2013 in Canada. Because I also had some difficulties such as not knowing where to buy food, not having time to go to the market. At that time, I had the idea of establishing an online grocery service, but I did not have enough experience, ”said Truong.
In English, Chopp means to cut food. Nguyen gave his project this name when he was still abroad. After returning to Vietnam, Nguyen found that this name would be appropriate for a food startup and decided to keep it.
"Over the last two years, Chopp has served about 7,000 customers in Ho Chi Minh City every day. There are about 150 orders per day. The number of returning customers is about 70%, with new customers making the other 30%. On average, each customer buys about 4 times/month", Mr. Truong confirms.
With the purchase of products like meat and fish, it is not easy to ensure that the products are still fresh. The operation requires a lot of steps, and each step needs to be done quickly and accurately.
“When we receive an order, we will check to see whether there are new customers or not. If the guest is new, we call them to confirm. If they are not, we directly pass it to the buyer. If it is out of stock, he/she must notify customer service. This team is responsible to inform guests. After that, the delivery person will receive the order and deliver it to customers.”, Mr. Truong shared about the working process.
In the context of fierce competition in the e-commerce market, many businesses also participate in the segment of shopping for supermarkets. Not to mention, big businesses like BigC, Coopmart, or Lotte also have online purchase services. The pressure on small startups is enormous.
“At first, we looked for our main partner first. In case, some of them are difficult to access, we just buy their goods. Our original partner was Nam An. Then, we negotiate with big companies like Coopmart or Metro. Big businesses think that they have a lot of money and human resources, hence, they can do it themselves. Everyone wants to do it themselves.”, Mr. Truong recalled the early days of his startup.
After 2 years of starting up, Chopp has 7,000 customers in Ho Chi Minh City with the rate of returning customers up to more than 60%. Every day the company receives about 150 orders. The number of office personnel was 20 people, with about 40 collaborators. From a small number of employees, Chopp has developed a team of more than 100 people, including the office block and the purchasing and delivery team. Chopp is a partner of more than 50 supermarkets and stores in Ho Chi Minh City, serving more than 10,000 transactions per month.
Chopp’s disparity, according to Truong, is the concentration on the operating system. Because approximately 80% of his customers choose fresh products, if the goods no longer maintain their quality, customers will not come back. He decided to focus on investing in operations. According to him, the key is to provide better service to your customers. From there, it will also help the business optimize the products they sell to customers.
Mr. Truong assessed that it is not a difficult task for businesses to build apps or websites, but it is challenging to focus on making a good customer experience.
"It is difficult, but it is doable. For large enterprises, they focus on large costs and numerous staff, so there will be pressure on results. Those teams will have to plan to operate from planning to testing which takes around half a year or a year. That is also our advantage, small but fast ".
“We also do not compete with them but make their services better. They think Chopp can do it, they can do it, everyone can do it. That's an opportunity for Chopp. We have 2 years of experience, we will invest more to go further ”, Mr. Truong affirmed.
Chopp will certainly scale, depending on whether or not there are enough resources. Mr. Truong said the company was profitable but the interest will be used to pay for the company's activities. "If it only solves the problem in one city, then nothing can be done. We want to go further", CEO Chopp said.