eBay in a Box?

InQBox1 I found this pretty interesting… just like how the Internet serves as a platform for people to publicly trade goods (e.g. eBay), here’s a new kind of store that helps you sell your stuff.

As seen in “the electric new paper” (Singapore) on 13th Oct 2004:
Too expensive to rent retail space? Display your wares in a shop within a shop. A new shop called InQbox in Far East Plaza (Singapore) has 180 modular shelving boxes open for creative types to showcase (and sell) their wares. Owner and founder Miss Danas Njoto, 27, said: ‘I was inspired by many young and talented people who have great enterprising ideas but simply not enough funds or support to make their dreams come true. ‘I wanted to create that bridge to take them from their dreams to reality’.

Her tenants include artists, traders, and even executives who make things as a hobby, and who won’t give up the day job but want an outlet for their creativity. Some of them have tried selling on the Internet, she said, but found it too much of a hassle.

Each box costs from S$80 to S$138 a month, depending on size and location, and tenants have to take the space for three months minimum. That’s less than the $50 required for a spot at Tanglin Mall flea market for five hours, said Miss Njoto. So far, 60 per cent of the boxes have been taken up and a few are already filled with fashion, jewellery, second-hand designer bags, and retro clockwork tin toys.

InQBox2 Not everyone is guaranteed a place. There’s quality control. Miss Desiree Low, the store’s marketing manager, said: ‘We want to make sure things are of some value, and look good, and appeal to customers. And, of course, if we suspect they’re illegal, we will reject them.’ Mr Clement Ng, a volunteer with the Spastic Children’s Association, will be using InQbox to showcase and sell art created by children with the disability. ‘We want people to realise that spastic people can do art, and to give it a chance,’ said Mr Ng, a 37-year-old interior designer.’A lot of corporate clients come to us to buy the art, and we charge $500, but for the public, we want it to be around $250.’ All proceeds will go back to the charity.