GrabGas wants to ‘Uberise’ the gas delivery industry
By Lum Ka Kay June 22, 2016
- On-demand gas delivery service supported by GPS
- Simple-to-use approach to woo non-tech-savvy consumers
KUALA Lumpur-based startup Grabgas Technology Sdn Bhd wants to digitalise the traditional gas delivery industry with GrabGas, its on-demand gas delivery service which connects customers with liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) drivers via the global positioning system (GPS).
Grabgas cofounder and chief operating officer Jeson Lee claims that GrabGas allows customers to find the nearest gas delivery driver in less than a minute.
“With our service, customers will be able to save their time waiting for their delivery to arrive as our algorithm helps locate the nearest driver available in that area,” he tells Digital News Asia (DNA) via email.
“Also, information of every instantly confirmed gas delivery order such as the driver’s name, vehicle plate number, phone number and the exact fare that will be charged, are clearly displayed on our platform,” he adds.
Currently, the GrabGas service is available on its website, while a mobile app will be rolled out “in a few months’ time,” says Lee.
“At the same time, our team is also developing an API (application programme interface) to integrate GrabGas with similar service provider platforms such as Kaodim and HappyFresh to increase our market reach,” he adds.
Kaodim is a Malaysian on-demand services startup, while HappyFresh is a Jakarta-headquartered online grocer.
No need to be tech-savvy
Lee says GrabGas was designed to be “as simple as possible,” where even consumers who are not tech-savvy can place their own orders for gas delivery without having to go through complex procedures.
“Consumers will only need to select their desired LPG brand and size, key in their personal details, delivery address and preferred delivery date and time, and we will locate the nearest drivers who are available to take the order.
“We also have a cash-on-delivery option for those who do not prefer to pay online,” he adds.
Grabgas Technology is also looking into developing an automated chatbot for consumers to order gas via SMS, WeChat or Facebook Messenger.
“With this, downloading an app or visiting our website would no longer be necessary,” says Lee.
In the pipeline
According to Lee, the GrabGas service is mostly focused in Petaling Jaya where the company has 70 drivers on board.
The 12-member startup plans to expand its service to other areas within the Klang Valley such as Kuala Lumpur, Puchong, Shah Alam and Klang “soon.”
“We are also closing a deal with the second largest LPG company in Malaysia to get all of its 2,000 drivers to join our platform,” he says.
Launched in October 2015, GrabGas is still in the “pre-revenue stage,” he admits, although it is getting an average of 350 gas delivery orders each week.
Grabgas Technology has received a total investment of RM160,000 (US$39,700) to date, including “RM60,000 (US$14,888) from a domain expert in the LPG industry,” and the rest from mobile services provider Digi.com Bhd.
GrabGas was one of the three winning teams of Digi’s Digi Accelerate accelerator programme, where RM100,000 in seed funding was part of the spoils.
Lee is keen to see GrabGas dominate the LPG delivery service industry in Malaysia by the end of this year, before hitting the regional market.
Meanwhile, he says the idea behind GrabGas came when cofounder and chief executive officer Sean Hoo faced difficulty in ordering cooking gas, and had to eat out for three weeks.
“We then realised that there’s a huge problem in the traditional gas delivery industry,” says Lee.
Hoo also founded another startup, Bash, a platform that connects people with similar interests in sports.
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