With the rise of ecommerce over the past few years, marketplaces have been emerging at an exponential pace, and with them, novel payment solution providers, to facilitate online shopping experiences. Customers can now access and benefit from a wide range of payment options, including options to pay in installments.
To understand how the sector is shifting, we sat with Farah Kdouh (FK), Marketing Coordinator & Social Media Manager at Zood, to learn more about how the platform is transforming and releasing new features. In addition, we covered how it is supporting Lebanese customers to have equal access to purchase goods locally, and from abroad.
BDD: Why was Zood founded? What was the market gap that was identified?
FK: Zood was founded in 2017, initially as the Zood Marketplace App. The primary concept revolved around purchasing items from China, with payments made in Lebanese Pounds (LBP) and the convenient feature of Cash on Delivery (COD). The introduction of this distinctive payment method (COD) in LBP, set us apart from our international counterparts. As ZoodMall progressed, we expanded our platform to include local sellers, transforming into a distinctive local and cross-border marketplace in Lebanon, currently featuring 4 million live products.
In 2021, Zood pioneered the Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) concept in Lebanon for the first time ever, with the unveiling of ZoodPay. Until today, ZoodPay is still the unique BNPL solution available in Lebanon.
BDD: Can you tells us more about ZoodPay?
FK: ZoodPay empowers customers to make immediate purchases and settle payments over 4 or 6 convenient installments, applicable to our extensive local and cross-border catalog. More recently, we proudly launched an exclusive partnership with Samsung, offering customers the opportunity to pay for their smartphones over 6 installments, covering devices valued up to USD1,700.
BDD: How did this expansion and integration into other areas happen?
FK: Over the years, Zood became a digital lending platform that drives financial inclusion by providing innovative and accessible financial solutions to over 300 million individuals and SMEs in Pakistan, Uzbekistan, and Lebanon. Zood provides a holistic ecosystem encompassing FinTech (ZOODPay), E-commerce (ZOODMall), and E-logistics services (ZOODShip), with lending at the core of its operations.
BDD: That’s impressive. What sets you apart from other digital lending platforms for e-commerce?
In Lebanon for example, after the economic crisis, Zood is the only company that provides micro loans to customers.
BDD: Can you tell us a bit about your projections or common trends of the ecommerce market?
FK: Zood’s plan for the ecommerce market for 2024 is to provide new opportunities to reach and engage customers and offer seamless shopping experiences, allowing customers to make all their purchases while using our unique BNPL solution in both online and offline stores.
We anticipate the introduction of new features such as personalized payment plans, loyalty programs and our own prepaid card.
We also will be rolling out the ZoodCard, which will serve as an integrated wallet, allowing customers to pay over 4 or 6 installments, to cover all their shopping needs.
To learn more about all the exciting updates at Zood, and start your shopping spree, download the App now: https://app.adjust.com/rheweb6