As the new university term begins, EBONY GORDON interviews the developer of an app which allows students to trade between themselves
“It’s not bad to fail,” says Andre Gibbs.
“Failure allows you to succeed more later on.”
Gibbs is the co-founder of Studentraiders, a smartphone app designed for students to connect, buy, sell and trade items, from old text books that they don’t need any more, to a bedside table for their room in halls.
Gibbs describes the app as “a Gumtree for students.”
The idea for the app came about when Gibbs, who studied Information and Communication at Manchester University, realised that there was a void in terms of students wanting to sell to other students.
“I went to university for three years and there was no specific app for me to sell to someone in the younger years,” he said.
Gibbs knows people who have graduated already yet still have their old books from three to four years ago. Instead of gathering dust, Studentraiders allows them to gather cash.
As well as running the Studentraiders app, Gibbs also works a 9 to 5 job.
“If the business is worth it, then you’ll do it.
“If you believe in your own idea and the core belief in your company, then while getting on with the work after a 9 to 5 job sometimes may seem like a chore, if it’s your baby, you kinda just get on with it.”
That wasn’t the main challenge for Gibbs in the development of the app.
Putting it together required him to work together with developers based around the world, in India and the United States. The different time zones meant sometimes having to wake as early as four in the morning to have time to liaise with them.
“Other than that, getting the legal documentation ready so that you don’t get sued.”
Gibbs says that the aim for the business over the next three to five years is to establish a core base in this country of the actively using Studentraiders. “Afterwards, we can venture out and see if the app can go the distance in terms of international unis.”
Gibbs gives advice on how to formulate ideas you have of your own. Every business idea or development, he makes sure that he writes it down. “If you have an idea and feel that it could be implemented, then have a stab at it. Sometimes the risk of it is worth the gain.
“If you try, you’ll succeed at some stage… It’s not bad to fail, failure allows you to succeed more later on.”
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