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Ubuy – The $60 IT Company

Ubuy – The $60 IT Company

Thursday, 29 April 2004

In March 2003, Ubuy Directors Dean Hall, at penniless 21 year old IT guru, and Matthew Van Veen, a retired Airforce Warrant Officer, started a project to develop an online shopping solution that met the needs of the New Zealand market. “We quite literally had nothing” comments Dean Hall, who’s other business, Dean Hall Design (DHD) created and licenses the software and design that powers Ubuy. So cash strapped was Hall in starting the project, that he had to borrow the $60 necessary to register the domain name from his parents, “They thought I was mad, in hind sight I probably was.”

The Community provides free merchant facilities to businesses that register with the site, taking a small commission on every sale. “We believe this creates a win-win business relationship situation” says Hall, “revenue is only generated by increasing sales for the merchants – so the company is 100% committed to making the perfect selling environment for every merchant.”

“The initial design of the system I completed in a weekend,” says Hall when describing the development, “the next eight months were spent refining and developing the system.” From such humble beginnings the Ubuy concept has grown quite rapidly with over fifty merchants now signed up and using the system, selling everything from Plasma Televisions through to Orange Juice.

Twelve months on both Matt and Dean have the chance to reflect on what has been an exciting business development. “More important to us than what has happened over the last twelve months, is the next twelve months. We’ve proven that our philosophy of providing a no-risk solution to merchants works, our future challenges centre around gaining enough capital to grow further.”

At times they have felt the frustration of most small businesses, “It’s been pretty hard, being so young, and with both me and Matt being new to business. A lot of people wouldn’t take us very seriously.”


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