South Africa’s Quillo launches Second-hand Textbook Initiative

The cost of securing a spot at a higher institution is not exactly cheap and it also comes with the added cost of actual learning and buying expensive textbooks. Luckily, these costs can be reduced significantly with South Africa’s new digital platform called Quillo which was founded by Tamir Shklaz in 2018.

It saves students money by making the process of buying and selling used textbooks quite seamless and efficient. It is an innovative mobile application for organizations who want to engage, inspire and educate their workforce as it provides the effective leader a powerful tool to increase retention.

The app is the brainchild of a student at University of Cape Town (UCT) who was also caught off guard by the ridiculously expensive prices of textbooks. It all started out as a noticeboard for buyers and sellers to connect on WhatsApp and via email, but was soon developed into an actual app to take the project further than just being a textbook marketplace.

Textbooks on Quillo are usually 70% or R900 cheaper than new books and users can find or sell their textbooks in seconds. They can upload textbooks and advertise it to thousands of buyers across South Africa, then sit back while the Quillo team handles the rest. The App also provides a secure online payment gateway for the transactions and users do not need to worry about bringing money for the purchase.

The startup has had the advantage of being well supported all the way. They are also partnering with the South African Education and Environment Project (SAEP), a non-profit organization that deals with student development from early childhood development from early childhood development (ECD) to tertiary level.

They have been able to save 30,008 students about R1,260,000 generally and have successfully sold about 1,400 textbooks, they have around 6,500 listings. The procedure includes; buyers find a textbook and pays Quillo and then have it delivered by Quillo by courier. The buyer then inspects the book and approves the payment and Quillo pays the seller via EFT.

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