Redshift was born out of the frustration experienced by its founders at seeing small businesses, entrepreneurs, and individuals unable to afford high end websites, packed with the necessary features to take their businesses online. At the same time, in a country with high levels of unemployment and a growing need to compete digitally, the opportunity presented itself to lower the barriers to entry for people to build websites without the necessary technical skills.
Redshift developed their website builder, which uses an easy to use drag and drop interface, allowing users to create beautiful, functional websites off WordPress in a matter of hours. E-Commerce sites – largely inaccessible due to price, can now be created by anyone for less the price of a pizza. The company aims to uplift communities and train people on their platform to close the gap between business needs and unemployment and to create more jobs.
As a CSI initiative, Redshift has launched its Local Store Connector out of its website builder. This free, standalone initiative offers an easy to use connector where local retail stores in South Africa can get themselves an online presence and sell to their communities.
Redshift’s Online Store Connector is an online platform that functions in two ways:
- It allows retail MSMEs to register their stores in order to access the local market at no cost; and
- It allows customers to shop from their local stores by simply submitting their grocery list and collecting their them after receiving confirmation, again at no cost. Thus, avoiding long queues and the risk of getting infected and spreading the virus, while enabling food security for households.
Lockdown, but not knocked down; supporting small businesses in South Africa with MSME registration and digital distribution during COVID-19
Have you ever wondered why all technologies seem to launch in the more centralized urban areas particularly in Johannesburg? Why, although the township economy keeps thriving the technological...
In the news:
19 August 2020
WATCH | From panic to pivot: how to reinvent your business
Business Day SME Matters digital series, in partnership with the Johannesburg Business School, looked at some of SA’s most innovative entrepreneurs who have turned a crisis into opportunity
31 May 2020
Businesses Pivoting their way out of the Covid-19 Crisis
Businesses across South Africa are showing tenacity, innovation and real digital disruption in the face of Lockdown and its tiered, vague levels of protocol. Many are pivoting their business models and offerings to adapt to the current operating constraints. Website developers Redshift onboarded local supermarkets and suppliers onto their platform. This allowed shop owners to accept orders from shoppers during lockdown. The pivot enabled Redshift to expand their business offering and help to support retailers providing essential services.
18 May 2020
US African Development Foundation (USADF)
Redshift starts a fintech venture during COVID-19 to support small businesses
10 May 2020
The impact of the COVID-19 on e-commerce and its interplay with cyber security and privacy. RedShift adopted a security-by-design approach by weaving the best and most secure e-payment gateways available in South Africa into their platform. Both founders acknowledged that data collected on this platform was not monetized and used for research purpose – stressing that “protection of data and cyber security is a core facet of the platform.”
4 May 2020
United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO)
Mmabatho Mokiti and John McDonald, founders of an online E-commerce platform, RedShift, shared their experiences on how they created this platform during the Covid-19 lockdown in South Africa. They provided some practical insights on how the lockdown was threatening the closure of small businesses and preventing consumers’ access essential goods.
4 May 2020
Redshift is a mere facilitator in forming the platform, the secured environment won trust of consumers and small retailers, which led to a system working within 36 hours of its creation that can even operate beyond the Covid-19 crisis.
4 May 2020
CUTS and UNIDO called for a multilateral regime on data privacy and other aspects of cybersecurity. Redshift, which has been created during the Covid-19 lockdown in South Africa, provided some practical insights on how they got into their fold during the lockdown, which was threatening their closure and consequent loss of livelihoods, while consumers badly needing essential items at the same time.
1 May 2020
UNCTAD eWeek 2020
Redshift Founders invited as panellists at the UNCTAD eWeek, co-organised by CUTS and UNIDO, to discuss the value of cybersecurity and privacy in digital and e-commerce space
30 April 2020
Business Africa Online
Redshift – Connecting South African small retailers with shoppers during lockdown
23 April 2020
How 8 African Businesses have pivoted their models due to the COVID-19 pandemic
22 April 2020
Redshift and Finmark supporting small businesses in South Africa with digital distribution
21 April 2020
Redshift’s free platform equips small, informal retailers to sell essentials online
21 April 2020
Covid-19 and African tech startups roundup
9 April 2020
Ecommerce Forum Africa
Redshift unlocking micro and small enterprises through Digital Technology