Two years ago, when Kathleen Ward graduated from Texas Christian University and moved to Dallas to start her career, she needed furniture for her new apartment, FW Business Press reports.
“I didn’t have the money to go buy something new. So I got on Craigslist to buy some furniture. But it kind of scared me to think of going to a random person’s house,” she said.
That’s when Ward, now 24, was inspired to start her own technology company catering to the college crowd. Based on e-commerce classified listing websites such as craiglist.com, uChilla is an online marketplace designed exclusively for college students and faculty to buy and sell with one another at their university. The site provides a safe and secure platform for students and teachers to trade with one another.
Ward launched uChilla at TCU earlier this year and has since expanded the concept to other major universities.
“I thought it would be easier, cheaper and safer to buy from another TCU student, someone I knew who I was dealing with,” she said. “The best thing about uChilla is that everyone has a profile so you’re not dealing with a random person. It’s got the safety factor.”
The site is also free for students to post their goods or services for barter or money.