Barter was something we all read in our textbooks as a way of exchange years and years ago. Who would’ve thought it would come right back and that too with an innovative twist? Barter is back with XChange It ! Build on the concept of barter, this startup really stands out in the crowd with its innovative theme, fun element and social message.
How it all began
A discussion over coffee with colleagues at work gave Ami Savla the idea of how barter could be revived and used to trade things you don’t need with other people who might need them. All this, without the involvement of money. That’s when she built a platform where people could exchange books and have some fun too while at it.
Ami quit her full-time job to focus on her dream project ‘XChange It, Bond over Barter’ that introduces a cashless trading platform in the merchandising system of the country. Xchange it saw the light of the day in June 2014 and since then, has hosted various book exchange events at IIT Bombay, Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management, Mithibai College and exhibitions like Kala Ghoda Arts festival and Hindustan Times No Tv Day.
Over the 2 years, the concept has been getting more and more innovative. Ami and her team are in the process of hosting a book exchange event at a college soon, this time with a twist “go date but this time, a book. XChange It brings you a blind date with a book”.
The journey so far
Ami says her journey has been quite satisfying and she has learnt a lot about entrepreneurship through XChange It. The entire experience has made her more mature and responsible as a person and as a business woman. The biggest challenge she faced with the venture was to gain people’s trust with the quality of her venture as it doesn’t involve money and in today’s time quality is measured with a price.
With sheer determination and constructive efforts, people slowly began accepting the intention of establishing a friendly community, the barter way. The youth today especially, are welcoming the concept of wastage reduction with open arms.
XChange It is currently focused on book exchange, but the plan is to soon expand into services too. For example, one can exchange a gym membership with a cooking class, a French language class for piano lessons, or design skills for office furniture.
Ami says “With XChange It , we intend to revolutionise the way we do business. The idea is to take the concept to a global platform so that people in every corner of the world could enjoy the benefit of products / services through barter. The plan is to target local communities first, followed by metros and other cities. The intention is to make XChange It everyone’s next shopping destination!”
Some fun Facts
While talking to Ami, I asked her some fun questions on the concept of barter and surely enough her answers were interesting.
1.) What’s the first book/item you traded? Our designing services for some office furniture.
2.) What’s the next book/item you wish to trade and for what? Trade content writing for website development.
3.) What’s one thing you think all youngsters today should trade? Ideas.
Are you ready to barter, exchange and swap? Do follow Xchange Its’ Facebook account for details on their next event and be ready to bond over barter.