Elevator Pitch: Kounta

Elevator Pitch is a new regular feature on Lifehacker where we profile startups and new companies and pick their brains for entrepreneurial advice. This week, we’re talking with Nick Cloete from Kounta.

In 128 words or less, explain your business idea.

Kounta is busy disrupting point of sale by providing a SaaS platform that is easy to use, yet powerful enough to run most retail and hospitality businesses. Kounta can be securely accessed on anything across a range of channels including in-store, online and mobile, while also easily integrating with a variety of technology platforms such as PayPal, MYOB, Xero, Saasu and Beat the Q. After months of working with a beta group of retail and hospitality merchants and partners we released Kounta to the business world, so any merchant could signup and setup a Kounta (Point of Sale) system within minutes, with no setup fees at a low ongoing monthly subscription fee.

What strategies are you using to grow and finance your idea?

Apart from an amazing team, Kounta is focusing on getting strategic investors to bring on board industry experience, partnerships and innovation. We develop strategic partnerships like the one we have with PayPal around its new mobile wallet which means Kounta can now accept mobile payments across the Kounta platform to enable a faster, safer and more interactive shopping experience for both merchants and their customers around the world.

Through a growing network of professional Point of Sale implementation partners called “Kounta Specialists” we can provide consultation on the best setup, training and support packages for our clients. Last but definitely not least, we’re placing a strong emphasis on our loyal merchants who are some of Australia’s most well known and innovative hospitality outlets like Sonoma Bakery, George Gregan (GG) Espresso, and Gelato Messina, with most of our growth coming from word of mouth.

What’s the biggest challenge facing your business?

Whenever you bring a new way of doing something to the market, there is always a lot of educating that needs to happen, which isn’t always easy, but the single biggest challenge is making Kounta work across thousands of merchants and devices, allowing for a non-stop platform capable of working in multiple countries and time zones. We know this has massive, disruptive global potential to change the way people sell and buy in physical settings, but making sure it can scale to all these variables is our biggest challenge.

What one phone, tablet or PC application could you not live without?

Gmail and Google apps because it’s a well designed, secure cloud based service that can be accessed on anything at anytime which is scalable to any business.

What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever received?

Don’t knock on the door. Kick it down.

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