Quupe, a sharing-economy platform, is the easiest way to rent almost anything.
We're bringing the sharing economy to your door,
and now you can be a shareholder in the sharing economy.
Quupe is a web and mobile (iOS) sharing-economy platform. It’s free to sign up and free to list things. We insure everything that goes on our platform, up to $10,000. We started out as a free-sharing platform, because we wanted to find an easy, reliable way to let members of a community share resources.
- We launched in February 2017. We have about $350,000 of inventory on the platform, which includes a wooden broadsword, a chicken coop, a teardrop trailer, and a ton of other useful, interesting things you'd be unable to rent anywhere else.
- We spoke on business innovation at the National Zero Waste Conference in November 2017. (Co-founder Angela was very proud of the fact that the "NO RAGRETS" tattoo guy made an appearance in this speech.)
- Over our most recent 100 transactions, we've saved people, collectively, $75,000.
- With no marketing anywhere but Vancouver, Canada, we've seen organic sign-ups from 25 countries. We think this is a massive proof that the world is ready for this idea.
If it feels like the sharing economy is taking over the world, that's probably because it is. You've likely already used a sharing-economy platform at least once in your life. Especially if you're between the ages of 18 and 35, as millennials are three times likelier than everyone else to participate in the sharing economy. AirBNB, Lyft, Zipcar, Car2Go, Mobi, and even Netflix and Spotify are prime examples of the sharing economy, of which the prime tenet seems to be access over ownership. People are increasingly comfortable with the idea that their resources can and should be shared, for the good of our communities and also [link]the good of the planet.
Over the last ten years or so, we've watched as people adopted means of sharing music, apartments, cars, bikes, boats, skills, and knowledge.
And now the world is now asking the question: what other resources can we share?
The answer is: all of them.
More than just the feel-goodery, though, the sharing economy is about to become a powerful economic force. Dare we say... a disruptor. Currently, worldwide revenues from the sharing economy are about $14 billion annually. By the year 2025, that number is expected to grow to $335 billion.
And we'd like you to share a piece of that pie.
life's better shared.
A few questions we get a lot:
1. What is with your name?
It's pronounced "koop."
2. And what does it mean?
Quupe is short for “recoup,” as in, “recoup your investment on your awesome pressure washer.”
3. What happens if something gets broken?
We insure. Up to $10,000.
Like so many great narratives, Quupe started with a life-upending catastrophe. In 2014, our CEO Angela moved to South Africa with her partner, and on their second night in Cape Town, while they slept in the next room, they were robbed. Everything was stolen, including passports, bags, IDs, credit cards and cell phones. They ended up stuck in South Africa for eleven weeks, unable to leave the country. And that gave them a lot of time to think. What they thought was: “Maybe we should try Vancouver.” When they got to Vancouver, where they knew almost no one, they slept on an airbed in an empty apartment for three weeks.
This started Angela on the path of thinking about community, access, and ownership.
Two years later, she met her cofounders, Amanda, Vijay and Zeeshan, all of whom had also been thinking about these issues, at the Centre for Digital Media. Having grown up in four different countries — China, the U.S., India, and Pakistan — the cofounders had all felt the issue of overconsumption keenly (and ever-more-crowded urban spaces, too!) and were committed to doing something about it.
We’re proud of the diversity of our founding team: We are four people from four different countries and two genders. Having this many different voices at the table great for business, as we’ve discovered, as that alone allows more ideas (and therefore, better ideas) to come to the forefront. Moreover, we're as diverse in skills as we are in life experience. One thing we all have in common: A passion for entrepreneurship and an unwavering commitment to Quupe's mission of enabling the world to share resources.
There are three building blocks that form the core of why we're doing what we do.
1. Good for communities. Quupe connects people in ways they have never been able to connect before, and allows people to access things and enjoy experiences that they otherwise wouldn't.
2. Good for your finances. We're 30-40% less expensive than renting from a bricks-and-mortar store, and if you use our platform to lend your own gear, we're actually making you money. (We have a few users who are close to paying off their gear just by having rented out a few times.)
3. Good for the planet. By promoting an elegant solution to the problem of underused personal resources, Quupe has the power to shift consumption habits so that over time, fewer things end up in landfills.
We're launching in Vancouver because we believe it's the perfect city to adopt Quupe. But we intend to see it being used on every block across North America. And because our founding team comes from all over the world, we've always envisioned Quupe as a global initiative. The problems of overconsumption, crowded urban spaces, disconnected communities, rising income inequities exist everywhere.
Eventually, we believe the widespread adoption of sharing-economy platforms will be the next phase of human interaction and we are already witnessing the disruption of the very idea of ownership.
Plus, Quupe answers to 3 of the U.N.'s 17 Sustainable Development Goals:
The platform was built with this mantra in mind: "simple, simple, simple." We know we're asking for a behaviour change; we know the platform needs to be bogglingly easy to use. We hear worries a lot about how people think the process may be difficult: "What if something gets broken?" "What if the person never shows?" We know how frustrating these kinds of worries can be, and we built the platform so that it can do the worrying for you. We take the guesswork out by incorporating a rental calculator and geolocated map (so you can see where everything is.) We also verify every user (as well as every item) that comes onto our platform. Furthermore, we've incorporated ratings and reviews so that the community can be self-policing.
There are two revenue models: the peer-to-peer platform, wherein we earn a piece of each transaction, and the software-as-a-service model, wherein businesses pay a monthly subscription fee to access the platform.
The platform will begin testing in new markets in 2018. We will prove out the market here in Vancouver first, and then expand into other cities across North America, and later Europe, Australia, and Asia.
The proof of the pudding lies in the... numbers. Here are some statistics around the size of the overall opportunity that exists in the sharing economy space. (tl;dr: big, and getting exponentially bigger.)