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ТРЦ Керуен, Астана
тел. +7 702 888 30 03
тел. +7 7172 577 888
skype: www.bff.kz

Пр. Достык 9, 2 этаж,
бутик 44-45
режим работы: 
с 10-00 до 22-00 
без выходных и перерывов

email: amigo@bff.kz

twitter: @BFF_kz

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Business Uses Social Media to Achieve Success (интервью о BFF.kz)

ASTANA – The Best for Friends online store BFF.kz is pioneering new standards and models of developing business models of social networking in Kazakhstan. 

Ulan Karazhigitov, director and co-owner of BFF is qualified for the challenges he faces. He has two degrees in financial and technical studies and is active participant in social networks himself. He already has great experience in implementing web projects. Now he is using his knowledge and experience to improve electronic business standards in Kazakhstan.

"Ulan reminds me of such people as Steve Jobs and Richard Branson, because everything that he does is destined for success. Despite his young age, he has already achieved a lot and I respect him for his professionalism and attitude to business," his business partner Rustem Karymov told The Astana Times. 

"Ulan is a serial entrepreneur," Karymov said. “He organized and runs a successful business in selling computers and licensed software (ferro-astana.kz). He does not simply sell products and services. He does it very well and makes his customers happier. Now we are working on this online store as our common project."

The Astana Times interviewed BFF.kz director and co-director Ulan Karazhigitov.

How did you come into this business?

It all began when my friend Rustem Karymov returned from England, where he successfully obtained his MBA degree. So with a clear vision and a desire to develop a line of E-commerce in Kazakhstan, we decided it would be a good time to open an online store. We knew that the government was actively promoting legislation to facilitate the use of electronic currency and boost e-commerce. Then the idea of developing an online store grew in our heads. We studied the emerging market and explored its -different specialty niches. Then we looked for the kind of specialists we knew we would need to implement our project. However, the main thing we were looking for was a business model that would set us apart from the few players who were also in the market.

In January 2011, we came up with name of Best for Friends for our store. We already had a growing online network of friends and contacts through our participation in the existing international social networks that were being used in Kazakhstan - Facebook, Vkontakte, Twitter and many blogs.

By that time we already had successful experience of selling IT equipment via Facebook and Twitter. So we soon concluded that a business focused on developing through social networks in our country would be convenient for customers and made it our main focus.

What advantage does BFF.kz offer its customers?

A key principle of BFF.kz is its rapid response to any customer queries. Our clients can instantaneously reach us through any channel of electronic communication - social networks, phones, e-mail and others. No other electronic stores in Kazakhstan serve the needs of online social networks as comprehensively and rapidly asBFF.kz does.

How successful is your company?

Our first eight months of business have been very successful. We have already opened two conventional stores – one in Astana and the other in Almaty – in addition to our online operation. The two physical stores are authorized to sell Apple products. We estimate that 20 percent of our total sales are currently made online. The other 80 percent of our sales and income revenue is generated through the two conventional stores. In only eight months our company’s gross income has exceeded $1 million.

How often do you personally purchase products through the Internet?

I do it on a regular basis. I pay all our company’s bills online including utilities, mobile payments, and any other transfers.

What would you advise to people planning to start an online business? 

We started BFF.kz with a total capitalization of only $15,000. The main thing is to differentiate your new company and its products and services from the gray mass. Aspiring entrepreneurs, therefore, need to break stereotypes and establish new standards in the specialized market niches they identify.

It is also essential to focus on offering convenient service to your customers. Your customer is your king and your god. If you satisfy their demand more effectively than your competitors, then your business will be more successful.

We have considerably simplified many of our online procedures for ordering and payment. Our price for delivery is fixed and it does not depend on the weight or dimensions of the product, or the floor the buyer lives as and the time of requested delivery. And we do not charge any shipping costs at all for deliveries of products in the cities of Astana and Almaty.

By Yernat Mukhamadiyev for The Astana Times

Жанна Н BFF.kz Жанна Н BFF.kz
01 апреля 2013
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