How A Start-Up Transformed Korea’s Home Cleaning Service
One Korean small business is using smart technology to deliver lifestyle services to busy consumers.
In 2021, we collaborated with Forbes Asia to identify future-ready small businesses and start-ups from its Forbes Asia 100 to Watch list. A panel of judges from FedEx and Forbes Asia selected the SBGC winners from among Asia Pacific’s emerging entrepreneurs across a variety of industry sectors. Miso stood out for its novel business ideas and innovative solutions helping to solve some of the issues faced by many consumers in Korea.
‘Miso’, a Korean home service online-to-offline (O2O) platform, received the Special Mention recognition at the 2021 FedEx Asia Pacific Small Business Grant Contest (SBGC). As part of this recognition, Miso was awarded a cash prize of USD 13,000. Established by Victor Ching, Miso is the leading home services booking platform in Korea, helping customers connect with service providers. Miso started its home cleaning service in August 2015 and has enhanced the home cleaning market by launching a wide range of lifestyle services since 2019. Now, Miso offers over 70 different services including moving services, interior and repair which are offered through a single application on any handheld device.
Miso founder Victor Ching noticed that the traditional home cleaning market had many rigid requirements such as a minimum service time of four hours and offered varying quality of service providers. Victor believed that a hotel-like home cleaning service at an affordable price would appeal to a wide range of customers. Next, he looked at how to connect customers to the providers by building a data-driven platform. The goal of Miso’s O2O platform is to match a customer with a cleaner that’s a good fit through analyzing data.
Miso went on to launch a two-hour home cleaning service – an industry first - through their platform, enabling customers to select the service that matched their needs and making cleaning service more affordable. At the same time Miso’s matching technology enabled cleaners to earn a higher hourly wage as they could select cleaning jobs within the same areas or buildings, using their time more efficiently.
Running Miso’s online- to- offline (O2O) platform required developing the technology to make it smarter and more efficient to match customers with service providers. Equally important is ensuring that a good service is delivered to the customer offline - in the physical world. To create a good experience, all Miso employees start their first weeks understanding the needs of both customers and service providers by spending time with them. Listening closely to both groups enable their teams to build better solutions that matches everyone’s requirements.
Victor believes Miso’s promising results are why foreign investors are interested in the business. Miso has processed over 4 million bookings with an annual transaction amount exceeding 100 billion Korean Won (US$ 81 million). Miso is currently the top home service platform in Korea. This means there is significant potential for Miso’s services to be in demand in other markets. The FedEx SBGC program has helped Miso gain more awareness across APAC, supporting their plans to expand.
At FedEx, we’ve long been advocates for the SME business community. We believe that FedEx wins when small businesses win. The SBGC contest is one of the many ways we support small businesses beyond just shipping.
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