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Kiwi tech start up jumps in the online shopping ring

New Kiwi start up SellShed is utilising Facebook integrated technology to help drive a new smartphone shopping concept.

SellShed is a free mobile e-commerce platform which matches buyers and sellers in their local communities. It is already experiencing significant interest internationally in countries as diverse as Italy and Mongolia.

The app has proved popular with more than 4,000 international downloads in just its first week.

Peter Howell SellShed marketing director says there is a global trend towards social trading and mobile e-commerce but other platforms have failed because they require users to be tech savvy or make it difficult to upload new products on smartphones.

“By using the familiar format of an existing social media platform, new users are intuitively able to understand how to use the technology,” he says.

Howell says one of the most significant advantages of SellShed over other trading platforms is that it encourages users to trade directly with each other rather than restricting them to only transact through the app.

Howell says sellers can quickly create new item or service posts with just their mobile phones.

Once a seller lists an item on SellShed it is placed on the browse stream which is searchable in a Facebook-style framework. The post can easily be added to the seller’s own Facebook page as well.

Howell says the company has lodged patents to protect unique functionalities of the app internationally.

“We have also added in unique tools which are not available on other popular trading sites including the ability to easily list ‘items wanted’ and be matched with a potential supplier. This is one of the features we have patent protected,” he says.

Howell says that by removing any listing fee or commission structure it’s economically possible to add in a range of other features, allowing users the flexibility to make swaps, or part sale and part offer transactions.

Howell says the site is completely free for people to buy and sell products with the company’s revenue derived from advertising and possibly premium services in the future.

“People can trade new and second­hand goods and look for specific items they want to purchase. Browsers can list items quickly and receive notifications of new items they are looking for within their area. They can use SellShed to trade safely, quickly, locally free of charge,” he says.

Howell says SellShed currently employs seven local staff and has plans to increase this number to 20 or more as uptake of the app expands internationally. They are also seeking investment to help fund global expansion.

The web version is available here and the free app can be downloaded from the Apple iTunes store.