Asia Pacific Blog
Google and the Internet from .in to .au
India's bus ticket to success
Wednesday, April 30, 2014
This post is part of our regular series of interviews with people across Asia-Pacific who’ve caught our eye, using the Internet to create, connect and grow.
Phanindra Sama of
How would you describe redBus in one sentence?
redBus is the largest online bus ticket agent in India, making bus travel more convenient for millions of people.
Why did you choose to go online?
India’s bus industry is highly fragmented, with thousands of operators across the country, each running 15 buses on average. Prior to redBus, not a single bus operator used Internet technology to manage their operations. They used physical books to keep record of seats sold, so there was no central nor real-time way for potential customers to find out which operator still had availability. Customers would have to go from operator to operator in search of a ticket and they would often end up missing a bus, even though seats were still available. This would be a loss to both the customer and the bus operator.
We saw an opportunity to provide bus operators with a platform that enables them to publish their seat availability online. We have used the Internet to aggregate published information about bus seats from thousands of bus operators, and display it on www.redbus.in for easy comparison and purchase.
What difference has the Internet made to redBus?
The Internet is the only means of seamlessly disseminating information to millions of passengers across the country. The growth of the Internet on mobile devices is also giving us unprecedented reach and distribution. Unlike traditional brick-and-mortar businesses, the Internet enables a self-service model, whereby customers can book tickets with little or no assistance from us. This makes it possible for us to serve millions of passengers efficiently and economically. Thanks to the Internet, we’ve experienced hockey stick growth.
Where’s the Internet going to take redBus next?
The Internet is becoming increasingly affordable and indispensable to every citizen. With its growing reach, it will offer redBus access to an even wider customer base at negligible cost. We are confident we’ll continue to grow exponentially in the coming years.
Who’s your Internet idol?
One of the companies I admire in the Internet space is Naspers. Starting out as a South African cable operator, they realized the power of the Internet quite early on and invested successfully in several Internet companies across emerging markets, such as Tencent in China, Flipkart in India and they also bought into redBus.
Posted by Phanindra Sama, redBus CEO
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