Case Title

Washup: aspiring to empower Pakistan's informal workers

Case overview / Abstract

In 2019, Abbas Jaffery and Sumair Saleem, founders of Washup, Pakistan, a young venture providing on-demand, high-quality and cost-effective laundry service faced a critical management dilemma as their supply chain collapsed due to a rampant surge in demand. The demand surge had been the outcome of Washup’s effort to push its services to the customers by getting vetted by a social media influencer. However, the duo was caught off guard when their supply chain could not meet the sudden increase in demand. The hesitant behavior of the informal workers to join hands with Washup had not only cost Washup this management nightmare but even left the duo at wits ends to develop a strategy that would help gain business idea acceptance from the grass root workers to whom the core competencies of washing and ironing were being outsourced. This case is a rich description of the nuances of operating an unconventional social enterprise in an emerging market and gives an insight on how behavioral change among key workers is critical in ensuring the success of ventures.

Learning outcomes

Learn the application of important strategy frameworks such as PESTLE, SWOT and Porter’s five forces. Understand the theoretical underpinnings of services marketing and learn the art of developing service blueprints. Critically evaluate the use of change management strategies to induce behavioral change among employees. Appreciate the balance that social enterprises need to achieve between their commercial and social impact goals. Critically evaluate the decision of outsourcing core competencies.

Case Areas

Behavioural Change, Change Management, Core Competencies, Demand Surge, Entrepreneurship, Idea Acceptance, Services Marketing, Strategy, Supply Chain Management

Case Level



Goods, Trade, and Consumer Services


Strategic Management Policy

Teaching Notes


Faculty / School

School of Business Studies (SBS)


Department of Marketing

Was this content written or created while at IBA?



Emerald Emerging Markets Case Studies


8 pages

Citation/Publisher Attribution

Fareed, M. and Taimoor, S. (2021), "Washup: aspiring to empower Pakistan’s informal workers", Emerald Emerging Markets Case Studies, Vol. 11 No. 1.