Promoting Impact Technology Tanzania | Spotlight on Emjey Couriers

Are you frustrated with getting the right delivery services be it parcels or food from your favorite restaurant? Worry no more, Emjey courier offers the most reliable and efficient services that include door-to-door pickup and delivery of parcels of all sizes from documents to food to equipment anywhere within the country. Emjey Couriers was established in August 2016 and the company stands on the slogan that says “You order we deliver.”

Tech & Media Convergency (TMC) had the pleasure to have a sit with Ms. Margareth Simalenga, founder and managing director of Emjey couriers. We had the pleasure of learning about the establishment, how their provided services work and what differentiates them from the rest of the similar provided services. Emjey Couriers Company is located at Mikocheni, Chato Street in Dar es Salaam.

The Inspiration and Attended Problem

When asked about what problem is Emjey trying to solve with their services, Ms. Margareth said, “Looking at the Logistics industry, we realized there is a challenge of the last mile delivery not only in Tanzania but in Africa as well, take an example in the local logistics industry they’ll deliver products/goods at specific geographical locations for us what we are trying to solve is to ease the delivery service to anyone at anyplace no matter how remote the place is.”

“I can say what inspired me was more of a personal need of convenience, you see I am a person who like things at my comfort, when I see a good pair of shoes or clothes I want to order and it be delivered to my doorstep, this made me wonder if I am in need of these services how many more Tanzanians need this as well? That was the inspiration and the beginning of Emjey’s journey.”

Ms.Margareth Simalenga posing for a photo at Tech & Media Convergency (TMC) office after an Interview

The Startup Investment and Growth

Emjey applied the bootstrap approach in setting up. This involves the use of existing resources to start up a business. Margareth says Emjey started with the little savings, she had at that time. “I was employed, I remember we started with only one rider and one other person who did everything, he was the finance manager, the operations officer, the HR, the messenger and from there we built on to where we are right now, so far we have not invited any external investors maybe in the near future.”

“So when we started in August of 2016 we only had two employees but by the end of September in 2016 we had acquired two more motorcycles, lucky enough we were using our own riders, so every rider was a stuff of Emjey that was on a payroll, the number increased from 2016 to 2021 from one to 12 riders of our own, we also work with independent riders, we now have a full time accountant, operations officer, a marketing person, the HR and business administrator.” She adds.

How the Services Work

Emjey has an on demand request, where the customer can request via web browser whether it’s products/goods and they dispatch a rider or driver depending on the type of one’s parcel. The second type of service is the dedicated messenger; this is a B 2 B model (Business to Business) if one has a restaurant and wants a delivery for his or her clients the delivery request is sent to them by the Emjey riders who are only dedicated to serve them.

While they have yet to introduce a mobile application for the service, they do have an internal app (rider’s app) that carters for the Emjey stuff only, for instance when a request is sent, the operation officer is responsible for assigning the rider to pick up the parcel and deliver it to the destination point. They are soon to launch the Emjey app that would serve for the needs of their clients.

The Targeted Customers

“Our target customer is pretty much everyone, its individuals and businesses, with businesses we act as a link between the corporate company and their clients.” “We reach our target customer through traditional and online marketing, so we do physical visits, go to their offices knock on their door and tell them about our services, we also do referrals especially to our business customers, when it comes to online marketing we use our social media platforms, website, bulk messages and bulk emails.”

The Eco-System Positioning

There are a number of Couriers companies in Tanzania but few use the digital platform, with Emjey what differentiate them from the rest it’s the Security assurance that they offer and professionalism. They also carry their brand very well from the way the riders’ dress, to the way they communicate to their customers. Last is how they have integrated the independent riders to their eco-system.

The Achievement So Far

Ms. Margareth says “The trust we have gained from our clients especially the businesses is a great accomplishment, I remember when we started we had no any business that were willing to partner with us, we were only serving the individuals but as time went we started getting delivery request from them, right now as part of our achievement we have over 10 corporate customers to mention a few, GL Insurance, Pan Africa Energy, Raha Limited, Tuko Sawa Organization, The Edge Company Limited when it comes to restaurants we have Terrace Lounge, Taste Me and Hot Box Burger.”

“Another achievement is we now do over 500 deliveries per month compared to when we began our business, we are over five regions in Tanzania and looking forward to expand, over 300 individuals use our services on return basis, the increased number of our employees from two to twenty, having the riders app and the soon to be launched Emjey app is an achievement as well.” She adds

Prior Challenges

When asked about what regret they had when they were starting the Emjey company, Margareth smiled and said “I believe in the process to grow, whatever we passed through made us who we are today, if we could not start with one rider or two riders I could not know the importance of marketing, the importance of earning customers’ trust, how managing the finances with the little that we had was so important, so going back to 2016 I wouldn’t have changed a thing for every little detail in our life has a significant value either positive or negative and we embrace it.”

Emjey’s Next Step

One thing Emjey looks forward in doing is getting an in house Web developer for most of the external Web developers are challenging and require lots of funds, they also look forward in seeing their app reaching every Tanzanian and being used effectively. “I hope the Internet connectivity is accessible and affordable to everyone even to the people in the remote areas, as a company we are also working on the SDG goal 8 that is Economic Growth and Decent Work, we want to see the bodaboda drivers being valued for their work it’s about time we change the narrative, lastly I see Emjey as a preferred Logistics’ partner not only in Tanzania but East Africa and we hope to create one million job opportunities to these bodaboda riders for they deserve getting equal opportunities and they are the backbone of the logistics industry.” Says Margareth.

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To read more about our reports featuring Startups in Tanzania