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বাংলা
Dhaka Tribune

Online cattle sales on the rise

Update : 12 Oct 2013, 08:28 PM

The internet is gaining popularity as a medium for selling cattle this year following the successes of a handful of online brokers during the previous Eid-ul-Azha.

Four to five new online brokers have joined the 10 others who traded online last year in a field that is relatively new but has real potential for growth, industry insiders say.

Advertisements for online cattle sales have climbed from last year's 800 to 1,200 this year, according to advertising firms.

It is a religious custom for Muslims to sacrifice cattle during Eid-ul-Azha, the second largest religious festival of the community.

Through online brokers, farmers and traders are advertising their cattle on the internet, providing pictures and detailed information including colour, breed and estimated weight of the animals.

“This is a place without hassle and any fear of getting mugged,” said Eshita Sharmin, marketing manager at Bikroy.com, one of the largest online shopping websites in Bangladesh.

She said the number of web advertisements had increased as the demand for cattle online was rising with the rapid spread of internet usage across in the country.

Bikroy.com, which only posts classified ads, has already received over 700 advertisements. The figure so far is higher than the previous year, with advertisement numbers expected to triple during the festival.

Sharmin said the online cattle trade was on the rise as the traditional cattle markets were not entirely customer-friendly. “Online cattle buying saves time too,” she said.

Online brokers say the trading of sacrificial animals on the internet would reduce cattle prices as there is no middleman, while the city dwellers’ hassles will be lessened as they will not have to go to the cattle market and walk the animal back home.

Enamul Haque, project-in-charge of online portal Amar Desh Amar Gram, said there were positive responses from both buyers and sellers.

The portal, which facilitated the sale of 25 cows last year, is expecting to facilitate at least double that number this year.

Regarding the commitment to deliver the exact animal that buyers choose online, Enamul said buyers were able to view the animals prior to payment.

He said people could order their sacrificial animals at fair prices through the website, and that it would later be delivered to their homes.

The online shopping portals offer a wide variety of cattle at prices ranging  from Tk6,000 to Tk125,000, providing photos and details of the animals.

Without visiting a crowded market, the buyers are able to choose cattle from the comfort of their homes and communicate with several traders before making their final purchase.

Amar Desh Amar Gram has so far posted details of around 52 cows, with more posts to come soon.

The e-commerce sites are mainly targeting those who want to distribute the meat of their sacrificial animals among the poor of their villages but live abroad or in the cities.

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