Wanna have your own online wedding catalogue? Two young Nigerian techpreneur built a new fashion wedding service platform

The following is a transcript of a conversation between Africalocals team and Oyetayo Oyewolu, Co-Founder of Palmfront, about wedding service and startup experience.Palmfront is an online wedding catalogue with a collection of different wedding solutions aimed at helping couples plan and communicate their wedding easily. With Palmfront couple easily reach out to wedding vendors, communicate wedding details, select preferred gifts, tell love story and share wedding pictures with friends and family.

 Q1: What's your background, what were you working on before this startup Palmfront, What's your work experience, Can you introduce your business to our users?

Oyetayo Oyewolu: My name is Oyetayo Oyewolu, a techpreneur based in Nigeria. I am the  Co-founder and CEO of Palmfront [www.palmfront.com], an online wedding planning platform. Before launching Palmfront back in August 2015, I worked on two early stage startups namely Monitor9ja.com which was an information portal for Nigerian news and allsoccerplanet.com a football information site.

Q2:  What experience or idea inspire you to get started with Palmfront and what does this mean to you in today’s Nigeria wedding service industry?

Oyetayo Oyewolu: The inspiration was birthed after seeing the void of wedtech solutions in Nigeria and Africa at large. Palmfront which is the 1st of its kind in Africa serves as a multi-solution wedding planning platform that has been able to infuse the use of technology into the wedding planning process.

Q3: What's your technical architecture of your website? 

Oyetayo Oyewolu: Palmfront provides users with an easy to use wedding planning web application.

Q4: What are your thoughts on the current state of wedding services in Nigeria?

Oyetayo Oyewolu: Personally, I feel wedding services in Nigeria is growing and constantly evolving. From the introduction of wedding exhibitions and trainings for wedding professionals to the innovation of wed-tech solutions, the Nigerian wedding industry has been able to gain lots of relevance at a global scale.

Q5:  How did you find your co-founder and employees? What’s the story of how you setup your team?

Oyetayo Oyewolu: My co-founder [Dimeji Onatunde] and I are childhood friends. We attended the same high-school and have also worked on previous projects together. In establishing the rest of the team, the principal thing we put into consideration was getting people onboard that had the skill set we were lacking.  

Q6: When you guys built the initial products and service, What were the difficulties your team faced and how did you fix them?

Oyetayo Oyewolu: We released the beta test version of Palmfront August 2015 making it possible for us to test the application with actual users. At first, the whole system was new to users most especially the non-tech savvy audience but as time went on we were able to get feedback from user which now helped us to commence full operations in August 2017.

Q7: How did you get initial money to start the business?

Oyetayo Oyewolu: Well at the start we didn’t source for external funding, we were able to bootstrap and get support from family and friends. 

Q8: How did you attract users to your website and What are the useful operation methods you can share?

Oyetayo Oyewolu: There are different ways we attract users. The fact that Palmfront solves more than one wedding planning challenge couples experience when planning a wedding was a big plus, we majorly leverage on various digital marketing techniques and most especially referral marketing.

Q9: Have you experienced startup failures before? If YES, what did you learn from it?

Oyetayo Oyewolu: Yes, I’ve experienced startup failure with my first startup [Monitor9ja] and what I learnt was that your team plays pivotal role in the success of a startup. There as to be a great level of understanding and communication between team members before a startup can succeed.

Q10: How did you grow your revenue? What’s the story behind how you got your first revenue from clients?

Oyetayo Oyewolu: Palmfront in its beta testing days was a totally free to use application, this was to get users on board easily. But as time went on, when we launched the full application and introduced premium packages, users were open to the new features that were added and didn’t mind paying a subscription fee to use this features.     

Q11: What operational data you can share? The user amounts, revenues, employee numbers ,etc.

Oyetayo Oyewolu: Since we commenced full operation in August 2017, we’ve had over 700 registered couples.

Q12: What’s your goals for your business? 

Oyetayo Oyewolu: Our goal is to serve as a collection of different wedding solutions that would help to-be-weds in planning and communicating their wedding effectively.

Q13: What’s your view on your competitors? 

Oyetayo Oyewolu: We have quite a number of competitors, but our advantage still remains that we are a one-stop shop for more than one wedding planning need.

Q14: How do you keep learning? Where do you go to learn more?

Oyetayo Oyewolu: Learning plays a pivotal role in all our decision making process. We ensure that we get time to time feedbacks from our users in other to help us learn and understand what the users really want.

Q15: What do you do on a daily or a weekly basis that you think is important in terms of forming your opinions on the wedding service?

Oyetayo Oyewolu: Our entire users are assigned an account officer who keeps in touch with users on regular basis.
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