April 6, 2012 2:47 PM
If you live in the United States or Canada, when you think of self storage units you might think of a building with various sizes of units - from a small 5' X 5' space up to a 10' X 30' unit. You might think of storing bedroom sets, dining room tables, or even an RV or boat. If you live in India, self storage is different. Far different.
Two years ago, Amit Wilson worked at a venture capital firm. He read an article about a storage facility in the U.S. that stored office records. He recognized there was a similar market in India - and the need was huge. Together with his friend, Nitin Dhawan, they launched the business Reliable Records based in Delhi.
This business stores documents for government departments, law firms, corporate businesses, hospitals, and marketing companies. Their facility has a fire prevention system that releases a chemical powder so items won't be damaged by water. For security measures, they have a security guard, a lock-and-key system, and a fingerprint ready system that controls access to the storage area.
When corporate clients started asking Wilson and Dhawan to also handle their personal storage needs, they started their sister company StoreMore.
Wilson realized that people in India have an affinity for keeping "old objects that hold emotional value." People can now store their sentimental items and personal items with StoreMore. Generally, people in India don't need to store a lot of things - mainly just what would fit in a box or two. Self Storage in a box.
StoreMore has a rental system that is very unique and different from the way things are managed in the U.S. Customers can order boxes by e-mail. StoreMore delivers the boxes to the doorstep. After the customers have packed their possessions in the boxes, customers send an e-mail and StoreMore picks up the boxes and stores them in the state-of-the-art facility at Reliable Records.
When a customer wants to retrieve their belongings, they send an e-mail with the barcode number of their box. They can personally pick up the box for free on a Saturday or have StoreMore deliver it to their home for a fee.
In the United States, new self storage companies usually have an extensive marketing plan to get their name in front of the public. Ads on TV, in the local newspaper, on a local radio station, and flyers distributed throughout the community are typical marketing methods. They might also do something with social media - create a Facebook page, post tweets about their company, and post a video to YouTube.
StoreMore has a simple marketing method: word of mouth. It seems to be working exceptionally well. They have received "exceptional" response. Soon, they will introduce a new box size and accommodate bigger items that don't fit into their standard-sized boxes.
"Store nostalgia without the clutter." India Times; 6 April 2012.