Umesh, Ajith, and Pramod are the three creative geniuses behind CamCom, the world’s only camera commerce platform where all you need to do is have a working camera phone to buy your favourite things. All three have experience in similar fields of business, technology and software and some different fields as well. They even worked with each other at some point in their lives before ditching everything else and coming together to make their entrepreneurial dreams come true. Each of them has their own respective roles to play in the company and their awesome synergy is what makes CamCom a smashing success!
How does it work?
CamCom defaults to the phone camera. The consumer just points the camera to any product of interest around him (could be something at home, at the mall, at the airport or even on the street) and clicks the picture of the product. CamCom then analyzes the image, classifies the product and detects details about the product. It then uses a Natural Language Processing (NLP) technique to construct the product description. This description is shown to the consumer and the same is passed on to the Merchant Site to bring out options and prices for the consumer. The consumer can then select the product from the options presented and make a transaction. It’s that user-friendly and simple!
How it all began…
Their inspiration to start their own company came from an article about the ridiculous numbers of F&B pics posted on Instagram, lots of alcohol and visions and dreams to change the world. Looks and words of pity, sympathy, and empathy from family, friends, well-wishers, including random folks on the street ended up in Umesh, Ajith and Pramod entering the “startup” world.
CamCom or Camera Commerce started off by them trying to enable a gifting experience using a mobile phone camera. Like all good entrepreneurs, they felt their initial idea was going to change the world, similar to Al Gore’s PPT on climate change! But reality was quick to bite them! But these bites also led to the birth of CamCom, which would later turn out to be a good thing.
The ABC’s of CamCom
B2B is the primary long-term sustainable model. The business enables visual discovery on multiple use-cases (mobile apps, backend cataloging, enabling offline and online stores to integrate Visual Discovery on their platforms and apps, to pharmacy checkouts etc.) It provides two engagement models, Platform as a Service and Licensing + Support model.
Use cases vary from identifying dogs and cats for logistics providers in the US and Europe to send appropriate kennels for shipping to identifying rotten vegetables and fruits at large supermarkets (online and offline).
The B2C model is driven by their App, CamCom, which is available on Play Store and the App Store. It enables instant recognition of saleable merchandise in the photo clicked. They have also partnered with Flipkart in India as their fulfillment partner and are also in the process of signing up with other merchants.
Why it’s better
Shopping inside stores is better known as ‘Shop Commerce’. Here, customers have the best way to do product discovery, enjoy closest proximity and intimacy with the product, but the checkouts are often painful. On the other hand, online or e-commerce enables easy, breezy checkouts but makes product discovery quite painful. CamCom bridges this gap. It gives you a unique way of Product discovery (closest to the In-Store experience) using your phone camera with Computer Vision AI technology and the ease of online checkouts!
The three entrepreneurs have to, like any other startup, face multiple, tough challenges, but they overcome them one step at a time. They are comfortably located in Bangalore and joke about the fact that even though their office is very close to their homes, their wives know where they are at all times! However, the three are extremely happy to be working in the city given that it still is the Silicon Valley of India, is always brimming with talent and has a great networking circuit.
Who it’s for
CamCom’s target customers include millennial women as they are more impulsive shoppers than men, and of course, the entire globe, because, who doesn’t love online shopping?! CamCom was launched in February 2018 and got 310 downloads in the first 24 hours of launching. The power of social media helps take their B2B and B2C platforms to another level using Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Their competition includes Amazon, FB, and Google.
At the end, the accuracy of recognition in the area of its application will see a clear winner. We feel we are on the right track with this one.”
The future of CamCom
CamCom is definitely raking in the big bucks and is looking to touch Rs. 2 Crores in revenue by next year. Their mentor is Mr. Ramprasad. K, aka resident geek and the creator of Holmes (Wipro AI Platform). He is their go-to guy for anything related to AI and Machine Learning. They consider the fact that they were able to bring to the market a monetizable version of a technology their biggest success so far.
Deep Learning is an evolving technology; we must continue to work hard to stay on top and keep experimenting.”
Their future plans for their bold and cool company? “We would like to be in South Korea and Japan because they are at least 3 years ahead of the rest of the world in tech and very early to adopt anything new!” They are also working on Product Category-wise Merchant affiliation models. For instance, in the future, CamCom could have Myntra for all fashion apparel and accessories, Big Basket for daily need items and so on. And with the three bold and brilliant brains behind CamCom, we’re pretty sure that it’ll be a breeze.