create / 2019

natch marketplace

natch marketplace

Idea submitted in the My LA2050 Grants Challenge by Natch

Natch is a local shopping app that shows you and brings you things people around you make or do. So we make it easier to do your shopping from local shops by creating a marketplace where anybody that has something they want to sell, whether they're bakers, food makers, clothing brands, or farmers, can have their own local shop and have their products delivered to your door each day.

Briefly tell us a story that demonstrates how your organization turns inspiration into impact.

My Dad and I wanted to start making and selling our own hot sauces. Him being from North Africa, and me growing up in California, we had a unique flavor palette and wanted a way to bring our culture to people’s door. We realized there was no reason to limit the beauty of our culture to our home, when we could spread it to other people’s lives. However we found it difficult, because there was no easy way for us to get other people to discover our creations and for us to get it in other people’s hands. In a world where product distribution had become monopolized by big brands, we realized why mom and pop shops were becoming a relic of the past.

We had the idea to help bring back local shops by creating a marketplace where anybody could have their own local shop, and by bringing their products straight to people’s doors, so that mom and pop shops could once again stand on equal footing with the big brands. Since starting the app, my best friend had also decided to leave his job and start selling his family BBQ sauce, in order to also spread his culture to those around him. We want to give anyone this chance to show the world their craft, and in the process beautify our everyday lives.

Which of the create metrics will your submission impact?​

  • Employment in the creative industries
  • Jobs per capita
  • Minority- and women-owned firms

In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

  • Central LA
  • East LA
  • San Gabriel Valley
  • San Fernando Valley
  • South LA
  • Westside
  • South Bay
  • Antelope Valley
  • County of Los Angeles
  • City of Los Angeles

How will your project make LA the best place to create?

We are in the process of completing our mobile application. We have been marketing to indie brands all across Los Angeles (farmer’s markets, fairs, brick and mortars, online home sellers). Upon completion of the app, we will be onboarding all the sellers that we have signed up and helping them get ready to fulfill their products.

From there we aim to target many different communities: students, those who support local and craft producers, under privileged communities, food deserts, as well as anybody else who would like to support local shoppers, but who do not know much about shopping locally yet. We will market in person at markets, fairs, campuses, local community centers, door to door, through brick and mortars, directly through sellers and their fans, and digitally through many different social media platforms.

We aim to be launched and begin operations by summer, and we aim to get hundreds of Angelenos to open up their own local shops by the end of the year, as well as thousands of Angelenos to shop locally.

As for helping Angelenos create, historically, economically underprivileged communities have been left out of the entrepreneurship ecosystem. As bigger companies began to consolidate, it became increasingly difficult for small businesses to compete and many were wiped out.

We aim to regrow the small business ecosystem, by giving local individuals a mechanism to compete. We are giving individuals a way to sell the products they make, and we are making it easier and cheaper for them to sell and deliver those products. In this new internet age, this will make small businesses competitive once again.

By running our app across LA, we give a chance for locals in communities of all economic backgrounds to engage in the entrepreneurship movement. So far not a lot of tech has emerged that has created economic opportunities for diverse communities. With Natch, starting your own business will be more accessible, and these business will get more visibility as opposed to traditional brick and mortars which are limited by geographic barriers. Also by delivering these products, we give access to Angelenos from across the city to a diverse range of healthy and locally made goods.

The aim is create an economic environment where most of our money is spent locally and goes directly to the creators. By diverting our spending from big to small businesses, we might be able to have an impact on income inequality.

In what stage of innovation is this project?

Post-pilot (testing an expansion of concept after initially successful pilot)

Please explain how you will define and measure success for your project.

2 metrics: how many shops have been created in our marketplace, and how many local monthly shoppers there are.

We aim to have over 1000 Angelenos running a shop to sell their products on our app within 2 years. We also aim to have 50,000 local shoppers within that time.