1. Elderly duo bets on adult market, powers up DiapperAtHome start-up

Elderly duo bets on adult market, powers up DiapperAtHome start-up

The start-up bug is no longer limited to youngsters. Age is not a bar for entrepreneurship, and even elderly people are finding this an alluring journey to embark on.

By: | Pune | Published: January 14, 2017 5:45 AM
Investments in start-ups, early-stage funding, VCCEdge, Startup India, Startup funding The platform is available offline and online. After a modest beginning, they are scaling up to expand reach. (Source: Reuters)

The start-up bug is no longer limited to youngsters. Age is not a bar for entrepreneurship, and even elderly people are finding this an alluring journey to embark on. They know the pain points of their generation and are going about solving those problems.

Incontinence is one such  challenge of aging that the elderly people have to deal with. While bladder control problems are common enough for the aging, it tends to hamper seniors and restrict their daily living. While adult diapers brands are now available in the market, buying and lugging the diapers is a source of embarrassment for them.

So 75-year-old Subash Gupte and 61-year-old Saurabh Dhanorkar have teamed up to set up a platform for home delivery of adult diapers. Their venture, DiaperToHome, delivers adult diapers to homes and they offer the product at a discount ranging from 25% to 35%.

Gupte started work on this in 2016 and has built up a sizable base of customers in Pune, Mumbai and Nashik and has now formally launched the
business.

Founder and chairman of his company, Gupte says incontinence is not a disease and there is no need to suffer. During Gupte’s visit to the US to his software engineer son, Gupte was inspired by Diaper.com in the US founded by Vinit Bharara and Marc Lore.

Amazon bought Diaper.com’s parent Quidsi Inc for $500 million. Encouraged by his son, Gupte, a pharma industry veteran, and his cousin Dhanorkar, a manufacturing industry veteran, set up the company.

The elderly or their family members can call their call centres and place orders. Diapers are delivered to their home in two hours to two days depending on where the order comes from. Free shipping, discrete deliveries with subtle packaging and discounted price are their USPs. Diapers are priced in the R275-350 range while pull-up pants are prices between R400 and R450.

The platform is available offline and online. After a modest beginning, they are scaling up to expand reach. Beyond Maharashtra, they will focus on online space and have tied up with the Department of Post for delivery. They have started supplying to a dozen old-age homes and are talking to hospitals.
DiaperToHome has a range adult diaper brands – Friends, Libero, Wetex, B.Fit and AVM – and is soon going to have its own private label. Supplementary products are also being considered to add to the basket.

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Gupte sees a 40% annual growth in the business. It is not just the elderly, adult diapers are also used by pregnant woman, in menopause and those suffering from prostrate. So, the demand for adult diapers is growing, says Gupte.

The adult diaper market is growing at 22% and it is a R300-crore plus market. DiaperToHome is betting on the growth of this market.

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