If you’re a startup enthusiasts, its highly likely that you would have read or atleast heard about the book - Saying No to Jugaad: The Making of Bigbasket by by T. N. Hari & M. S. Subramanian.
In today’s episode we have Hari Menon, BigBasket’s founder sharing the his experience in the Indian Ecommerce Ecosystem over the last two decades.
In May 2021, Tata Digital invested $375 Mn in BigBasket. They have also recently launched their quick commerce vertical called BBNow and will now compete alongside the existing players such as Swiggy, Blinkit, Zepto and Dunzo.
During the episode, catch Hari talking about his learning from his first venture, his thoughts on the current market and the investment slowdown, and much more.
02:20 - Building India’s online grocery market in the last two decades
14:37 - Starting BigBasket at the age of 50
21:16 - Dividing equity between the founders
21:42 - Mistakes & Biases which got carried from his first venture
24:15 - Becoming a part of Tata Group and growing bigger
27:16 - Top learnings and observations from Tata Group
29:30 - His thoughts on “10-minute delivery”
33:14 - Any similar patterns between June 2022 and 1999 boom and bust?
35:14 - Business which are not building a profitable model will suffer the most
38:22 - Indian Startup Ecosystem in the next 5-10 years
40:20 - Framework to identify large opportunities: Scale & Profitability
42:36 - Culture at BigBasket which keeps people from moving out
46:45 - Growing with the business as CEO
We’ve heard inspiring stories of founders of Facebook and Microsoft who’ve dropped out of Harvard and even some of the well known Indian Entrepreneurs who’ve dropped out of IITs to build on their dream venture.
But in today’s episode we’ll talk with Anish Achuthan, who ran away from his hometown during his Class 11th with dreams to build something big in the Dotcom space and currently is the Cofounder of Open, which recently became Kerala’s first unicorn start-up.
Listen to Anish talk about his journey through his various ventures over the last two decades and how he’s building for Open to democratize the Neobanking space in India.
02:42 - Being born in Govt service-oriented family in Kerala to getting inspired by Dotcom
06:11 - Meeting his cofounder & life partner
07:49 - Cumulative learnings from his previous companies
11:27 - Product Offerings by Open for SMEs, Banks and Fintech Entreprises
13:57 - Key milestones in Open’s journey
15:49 - Current metrics on the platform
16:56 - What are his plans with Open for the long term
19:17 - Their moat against other Neobanks and traditional banks
23:04 - Product & distribution strategy for the first 100 to 1000 users
31:46 - Licenses and certifications needed for Neo Banking
33:47 - Challenges while cracking the first banking partner
35:27 - Monetizing their services on Freemium model
36:55 - Advice to early-stage entrepreneurs
Saknas det avsnitt?
On the podcast today, we have with us Sandeep Jain, Founder, GeeksforGeeks. GeeksForGeeks is one of the largest online learning platforms for coding enthusiasts, budding engineers, and anyone involved in the tech domain.
Sandeep is from Firozabad which is 40 kms away from Agra in UP. He studied in a government school before doing his graduation from UP Technical University, Mathura, and masters from IIT Roorkee. In the year 2009, he created a blog with the intent to help engineering students prepare for placements. What started as a blog is today a 1000 Crore+ annual revenue Edtech company with 250+ team members.
Let’s dive deep into his journey from leaving his engineering job to becoming a teacher to 10 Million+ registered 'Geeks' from across the world.
03:07 - Growing up in Firozabad to growing the love for coding
07:20 - Joining D. E. Shaw & Co after graduation
09:24 - 30% Salary cut in his first Teaching job v/s being a Software Engineer
10:00 - Starting GeeksforGeeks in 2009
16:03 - Hiring the initial team
18:26 - Annual revenue growth to 1000 Crore+
24:12 - Learning the skills and growing in the role of a CEO
30:35 - Growing against well-funded competitors
March 2019 was when we published our first episode of 100xEntrepreneur.
So far we’ve covered 150+ VCs, Angel Investors and Entrepreneurs from the Indian startup ecosystem.
Alongside 100xEntrepreneur podcast we’ve so far invested in 30+ portfolio companies via like Airmeet, PlumHQ, Zencastr and Neeman’s.
In today’s episode we share our journey so far. We are Siddhartha & Nansi, a husband-wife entrepreneur-cum-content creator duo who started their podcast journey with a purpose to make behind the screen conversations, thought process, and mindset of VCs, Investors and Successful entrepreneurs accessible to thousands of early-stage entrepreneurs and startup enthusiasts like you.
We really hope that we have been able to serve you with great content so far and would really appreciate your feedback. How can you share your feedback with us?Reply to this emailComment on our Youtube, iTunes, Castbox or Spotify Channel
01:09 - How 100xEntrepreneur was born?
09:44 - To Unlock Growth: Start reaching out to people who are better and bigger than you
14:19 - What went in the background while recording a podcast?
21:01 - Joining AWS to setting up 100x Fund
23:33 - Building the team at 100xEntrepreneur
27:46 - Our favourite episode so far
India’s largest Content Marketplace with 1L+ creators, 2500+ customers, out of which 70+ are Unicorns.
Does that ring any bells?
We’re talking about Pepper Content, founded by Anirudh Singla, in his 2nd year of undergrad college.
Pepper’s journey started when Anirudh during his college decided to take up freelancing and content creation to fund his graduation all by himself. He then realised the potential of content creators in India and decided to organize it by creating an Indian marketplace for the same.
In our conversation with Anirudh, we dive into the journey of building and scaling Pepper to $8 Million ARR Content-marketplace in under 5 years and their plans ahead.
03:06 - Baniya-family background, freelance exposure while at college
07:06 - First few steps to building a marketplace
11:06 - Splitting equity early-on
12:46 - Reaching out to 80+ VCs and Angel Investors while raising their 1st round
17:20 - What made them raise their 1st round?
18:43 - Scaling from $500k ARR to $8 Million ARR in 14 months
21:20 - Client base: 550+ Active customers and 70+ Unicorns
24:20 - Need to focus on a SaaS based approach for Content
26:15 - “Hustle doesn’t scale. By the same time what scale’s is the mindset of thinking big enough!”
28:25 - “Not building a family, but instead building a high quality sports team.”
#1 Smartwatch Brand in India
#3 Smartwatch Brand in Asia
#9 Smartwatch Brand Globally
All the above feats are not from Apple, Samsung, or a legacy player in the market, but from our own homegrown Indian brand - Noise.
In this week’s podcast, we turn the spotlight on Noise : A brand that’s on a mission to offer quality smart wearables at affordable prices to its customers.
In our conversation with Amit Khatri, Co-founder of Noise, he shared how the brand started bootstrapped in 2014, what have been the challenges and how have they scaled over the years.
We have tried to summarize some key themes & takeaways from our conversation.
02:09 - Early Career & Family Background before starting Noise
05:45 - Product development & Revenue journey from 2014 to 2018
08:04 - Finalising the main categories - Smartwatch and Wireless Earbuds
09:55 - Why prioritize growing own Website instead of relying on marketplace?
12:18 - Testing your idea in the market being bootstrapped
13:36 - Vision & plan of the brand early-on
14:56 - Initial Learnings for early-stage D2C Entrepreneurs
16:16 - Focus on building the brand from Day 1
18:55 - Building and launching the first product
24:15 - Secrets of scaling from Rs.160 Cr+ to Rs.800 Cr+ Revenue
26:26 - Key elements of creating a playbook for a Rs.1000 Cr+ D2C brand
31:36 - Keeping prices reasonable while ensuring better quality
Why is HUL considered a Leadership factory?
“Every great brand is built on a fundamental human insights.”
Do you agree that people come before revenue?
“Invest in Brand, even as little as possible, and not just Performance Marketing from Day 1.”
Listen to Shashank Mehta, Founder of The Whole Truth Foods and a passionate HUL Ex-employee in today’s episode to know his perspective about everything mentioned above.
03:43 - Definition of D2C market in India context
07:11 - His early career prior to starting his entrepreneurial journey
09:40 - Post-MBA why he chose Marketing over Finance?
11:30 - Why HUL is considered a leadership factory?
14:30 - Learnings from his stint at HUL
18:48 - Why he joined Faasos (now REBEL Foods) a lesser known startup leaving HUL in 2012?
23:40 - Scale of Faaso’s when he joined and left the company
24:30 - Why he left Faasos and joined HUL again?
28:22 - Learnings from setting up an Ayurveda-brand within HUL
34:09 - Consumer insight which HUL was trying to solve with its AYUSH proposition
34:54 - His blog about food and fitness - FIT SHIT
41:54 - Raising around 5 Cr+ initial funding during his Notice Period
45:10 - Zero to One Phase of The Whole Truth Foods
50:02 - Realizing the ‘Aha Moment’ of brand’s journey
52:32 - Sales & Revenue Milestones during their journey
54:05 - Being a Truth company rather than being a food company
57:00 - Key learnings while scaling a brand
MobiKwik is one of the largest Mobile Wallet and Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) platforms in India. Its tech platform has 120 million Registered Users, 25.3 million pre-approved BNPL users and more than 3.4 million merchant partners. MobiKwik's top line grew by 80 percent from INR 300 crore in FY21 to INR 540 Crore in FY22.
Tune in to this conversation with Bipin Preet Singh, Co-founder, MobiKwik where we talk about his journey of building and scaling the company for the last 13+ years.
During the episode, Bipin also shares about how they started first with a basic problem of the masses with mobile recharge and then scaled over time, how they sailed through the difficult times of Covid and took Mobikwik to 100Mn+ users.
02:21 - What led him to founding MobiKwik?
09:00 - “You can’t build the platform on Day 1, the platform has to evolve.”
11:58 - Advice for early-stage entrepreneurs pitching to build a platform
14:27 - How did MobiKwik evolve as a platform?
27:23 - What has transformed significantly in the last 1-2 years?
30:33 - Current revenue, profits, and scale
36:25 - Is the economy currently going into recession?
38:11 - What kept him going for 13+ years?
40:33 - Tailwinds which are supporting Fintech in India
44:52 - Creating a mental model to build in markets with already existing large players
Any idea what’s common between Flipkart, Ola, Swiggy, Zerodha and 6000+ other Businesses in India and South-East Asia?
They all rely on Exotel for their customer communications, no matter the size, scale, or industry within which the company exists; Exotel has the a product-solution for all of them.
In this episode, we talk with Shivakumar Ganesan, Founder of Exotel to learn more about his journey and challenges building and scaling the company.
During the episode, Shivakumar talks about his experience with VCs & Angel investors, having Ola as a customer and much more.
03:48 - Early days, Family, background & career
06:40 - Entrepreneurial attempts before starting Exotel
09:51 - Initial Problem statement and solutions
13:50 - Raising money from Blume Ventures
18:30 - Scale and Customers at $1Mn ARR
30:21 - Cofounders leaving the company
37:30 - Dealing with thoughts about quitting
41:55 - How did A91 Partners chose to back Exotel?
49:38 - Current Capabilities & Scope for growth
52:15 - Proving naysayers wrong by building a $60Mn ARR SaaS from India for India
53:39 - Key lessons from his journey
55:56 - Advice for understanding market size
With the emergence of health issues in recent years, most people have started becoming proactive to improve their immune system and diet, rather than being reactive at a later stage when the damage has already been done.
Even most doctors agree that if from an early age, we somehow get access to a preservative-free, natural source of nutrients, it might significantly boost our health in the long-run.
Our guest Aarti Gill’s OZiva is India's leading Clean, Plant Based Wellness brand.
OZiva was started back in 2016 and since then the company has scaled significantly with a large base of repeat customers.
During the episode, Aarti talks about how she pivoted from her first venture to OZiva, what are the major challenges she has encountered during her journey and much more.
05:38 - Initial intro about OZiva
08:40 - High-level metrics around customers and revenue
09:44 - Building an Omni-channel brand v/s a D2C brand
11:26 - Early Education & Career prior to OZiva
14:14 - Meeting her co-founder and their first venture
18:35 - Deciding the first 4 products
21:14 - Market demand of OZiva’s Prime membership
22:26 - Challenges during the early years of OZiva
24:38 - Building a 20 Cr+ revenue from 2016 to 2020
26:53 - Building online & offline distribution channels
28:03 - Nuances while building distribution channels
30:10 - Rapid scale of 5x within a year
31:37 - Ensuring repeat purchase by customers
36:46 - Funding interest while growing from 0 to 20 Cr+
38:45 - Mental model of self-evaluating during each funding rounds
40:10 - Deepika Padukone as a brand ambassador
42:44 - Framework behind brand positioning campaigns
44:37 - Things which didn’t work out & learnings
46:19 - Why build new categories apart from nutrition
# Can a passionate cricketer become a passionate entrepreneur?
# Can you and your spouse be Cofounders without conflict?
# How many successful & fulfilling stints can an entrepreneur have?
All the above questions get answered during the episode with our guest Ashish Tandon, Founder & CEO, Indusface.
Indusface is his 3rd venture after 2 successful exits and a short but successful early-career in Cricket.
During the episode, Ashish talks about how his wife has supported him throughout his journey, what led him to start over and over again post his multiple exits and much more.
03:08 - Early background in Cricket
06:30 - 1st venture right out of College
08:46 - Getting acquired by SIFY within 2 years
09:49 - What led to his 2nd venture?
13:21 - Multi-million dollar Exit to TrendMicro
15:16 - Reason behind Bootstrapping his ventures
17:55 - What led him to starting Indusface?
19:42 - Problem statements solved by Indusface
24:32 - Journey from $1Mn ARR to current scale
28:10 - Key Levers to doubling their ARR within a year
31:32 - Challenges in building Indusface
36:58 - Having your spouse as your Cofounder
38:50 - Reflecting back how he feels about his journey?
44:09 - Lessons from all his ventures
# China Accused of cyber-attacks on Ukraine before Russian invasion
# Buget 2022: $9.9 billion towards cyber security aims to make Australia a key 'offensive' cyber player
These are some of the recent headlines around Cyber threats globally. Cyber attacks have been rated the fifth top rated risk in 2020 and continues to grow in 2022 as IoT cyber attacks alone are expected to double by 2025.
In this episode our guest Rahul Sasi, Founder CloudSEK, talks about the key challenges in Cyber Security in India today.
CloudSEK’s customer list includes Axis Bank, NPCI, Netcore, OLA, Sun Pharma, ICICI Lombard, IndusInd Bank, MakeMyTrip and many more who don’t wish to take a chance with the growing threat of global cyber crimes.
11 of the Fortune Global companies, and 7 of the world’s biggest banks, trust XVigil (one of CloudSEK’s flagship products) to safeguard their security posture.
During the episode, Rahul talks about how they started CloudSEK, customer acquisition strategy, and much more.
04:04 - Background before starting CloudSEK
08:55 - Current ARR and scale in terms of customers
09:45 - Milestone since launch
12:04 - Products and Problem Statements solved by CloudSEK
14:44 - How has been the industry response?
20:19 - Challenges with hiring the right people
24:40 - Targets for the next 2 years
26:17 - Learnings from their fundraising journey
28:26 - How to leverage your investors?
The Internet of Things category is not slowing down for anyone to catch up. It is projected to be a $1.1 trillion category by 2027, with the number of active IoT-connected devices expected to reach 30.9 billion units by 2025.
Targeting this, we have our guest Yadhu Gopalan, CEO & Founder at Esper, with a vision to power the next billion smart devices.
Currently, Seattle-based Esper has more than 200 paying customers and over 2,000 developers using its platform for product development.
During the episode, Yadhu talks about his journey building Esper, how he met his cofounder, what learnings he has brought from his stint at Amazon and Microsoft, and much more.
01:12 - Journey before starting Esper
02:20 - Early Childhood and moving to the US
03:48 - Problem statement behind starting Esper
05:25 - Product offering and clients
10:25 - The founding team at Esper
15:43 - Attracting the best talent
16:50 - Building a team across geographies
19:07 - Execute distribution and partnerships at scale
20:39 - Work Culture & learnings from Microsoft & Amazon
27:51 - Key learnings from his startup journey
As per a recent Entrackr report, Indian startups saw over 250 acquisitions in 2021.
Edtech startups like Byju’s, Unacademy, and upGrad have been in the headlines for their acquisition spree, and also startups in the e-commerce roll up space such as Mensa Brands, GlobalBees, 10club, Upscalio, and fitness tech platform Cultfit (Curefit) also took over smaller brands, recording the highest number of acquisitions last year.
With so much going on around acquisitions, our guest Rohit Anand, Founder, 1digitalstack.ai shares his experience of getting his first venture acquired.
During the episode, Rohit talks about bringing in a third-party consultant to assist with the acquisition, his second stint at entrepreneurship, and much more.
02:12 - Starting his first entrepreneurial venture in 1999
06:34 - “Importance of going after a problem where you have a natural advantage.”
11:39 - What did Value Edge work upon?
12:57 - Value Edge’s ARR at the time of Exit
13:39 - Thought process behind the Exit
18:46 - Process of identifying the right M&A Advisor and the help an entrepreneur can expect
24:00 - Maintaining balance during the stress while acquisition
28:57 - Deciding to start 1digitalstack.ai
32:31 - Current scale in terms of ARR & top clients
35:17 - Taking investor money during his 2nd entrepreneurial stint
38:10 - Future plans for 1digitalstack.ai (in terms of ARR & Growth drivers)
42:15 - Vision and Ambition of building a large company
46:19 - Current practices: Same & Distinct from Value Edge
50:32 - His approach towards investing
Many founders try to build for large markets. But Saahil Goel, Founder, Shiprocket thinks differently.
In his opinion, it’s okay to build small or lesser things and target a core segment of users, instead of jumping into a competition with large players, where you might not stand a chance.
In other words - Picking your battles wisely.
During this episode, Saahil talks about finding the right investors, current focus of the company, and much more.
01:56 - Finding his Co-founder & brainstorming around data-driven logistics
09:04 - Problem with starting in a large competitive market
12:02 - Focus metrics during the initial journey
14:12 - Current scale of Shiprocket
22:04 - Warehouse as a Service
26:24 - Y-o-Y growth of platform
27:49 - Approach to fixing broken things & building new
32:14 - Raising initial rounds of funding
45:01 - “Unless and until you have clarity about something, it won’t work.”
48:19 - Ensuring focus within the team
Suppose you're a marketer or have a marketer friend/colleague. During an event like IPL or Diwali, you need to get 100+ variations of creatives with 20-30 sizes for each, within a few days and not weeks, so that you can test campaigns on multiple platforms at the earliest.
However, traditional software is time-consuming, especially if you have a small design team with limited bandwidth.
Our guest, Satej Sirur, Founder & CEO, Rocketium, solves this for 1200+ brands like Bigbasket, cult.fit, Groww, Meesho, Supr Daily, Urban Company, and many more across 95+ countries.
During the episode, Satej talks about how customers differentiate between them and Adobe, the fundamental principles he focuses on to include in Rocketium's culture, and much more.
00:52 - Initial Intro
05:13 - Pivoting in early years of Rocketium
09:50 - Metrics around ARR & Customer base
11:31 - Customers comparing Rocketium to Adobe
18:07 - Company building: Attracting the best talent
22:36 - Principles in Rocektium's work culture
25:51 - What's 8-4-5?
28:02 - Framework while setting internal metrics
30:07 - Playbook behind International expansion
33:45 - Importance of deeply knowing who your users are
39:08 - Fundraising journey: Finding the right investor
"You never know when and where you can be "bitten by the entrepreneurship bug."
Something similar happened with our guest Shashank Bijapur. A graduate of Harvard Law School, he was working with a New York-based top-tier law firm; when he came across the news of Elon Musk launching Self-driving cars. He realized his manual work on Legal contracts was easily replaceable by AI automation soon.
This led him to start SpotDraft, an end-to-end contract automation platform for companies of all sizes.
In this episode, Shashank talks about his initial hiring struggles, getting new clients, some of his mistakes as an entrepreneur, the future plans for SpotDraft, and much more.
01:19 - Starting SpotDraft and meeting his wife for the 1st time
04:51 - First few years of struggle
07:28 - Timeline of Shashank & SpotDraft's Journey
10:34 - Switch of TG: From Enterprise to Startups
12:58 - Early customers: Unacademy & Chargebee amongst others
14:36 - Hiring A+ talent: Referrals from existing employees
17:01 - Mistakes in 0 to 1 Journey
22:18 - Competitive edge over large competitors
25:23 - "Let's get SpotDrafted."
# Marketer of the Year 2018 and 2019 by IAA Leadership Award held by International Advertising Association (IAA)
# Most Influential Youth Marketing Professional by Global Youth Marketing Forum 2019
# Top 30 CMO's in India 2020 by IAMAI
#" Marketer of the year" by The Economic Times ET Brand Equity
All of the above recognitions have honored our guest Karan Shroff, Partner & CMO at Unacademy, for his marketing strategies and the stellar brand campaigns time and again.
Before joining Unacademy, Karan was Heading Marketing at Xiaomi, and in this episode, he shares his decade-long experience in the marketing domain.
During the episode, Karan also talks about his first meeting with Unacademy Co- Founder & CEO, Gaurav Munjal, keeping his learners' emotions at the heart of all his campaigns, and much more.
03:19 - Early career journey
04:39 - Story behind joining Unacademy
07:32 - Marketing campaigns close to his heart
10:30 - Learnings from Gaurav and Unacademy's culture
14:45 - Finding creativity, ideas and tapping into it
18:17 - Audacity of ambitions & goals
20:38 - Secret Sauce: Keeping the sentiments of the users at the core of the campaign
23:24 - How to build an iconic brand?
27:24 - What has Karan Unlearnt?
31:24 - Changes in marketing strategy as per the dynamic needs of the customers
35:36 - His timeless marketing advice for startups
Do you know about the most interesting headline of all Indian business newspapers on 30 November 1999?
It was India's most prominent Internet deal at the time - a $115Mn acquisition of IndiaWorld, founded by our guest Rajesh Jain.
After this successful acquisition; Rajesh started Netcore. Yes, the same company is responsible for 75% of India's email traffic and 50% of Asia's email traffic through its Cloud network.
During the episode, Rajesh explains how they've been one of the Proficorns at Netcore, all his learnings and experiences over the last two decades, and much more.
03:17 - Early career and failures
09:42 - Learning entrepreneurship from his father
11:32 - Starting and scaling IndiaWorld
22:04 - "More important than knowing when to enter a business, is to know when to exit a business."
24:26 - His perspective about businesses in India
31:46 - "StarTech: Great Golden Era of Indian Entrepreneurship."
34:33 - Building Netcore after the previous acquisition
38:45 - Pivots and growth of Netcore
43:45 - What is Proficorn, and why has Rajesh strongly advocated for it?
51:48 - 25% ownership by employees
# Does the word 'Compounding' excite you?
# Have you always wondered what 'Value Investing' is and how can you follow this approach?
# Are you biased in your investment decisions?
Then, this is an episode you shouldn't miss. Our guest, Gautam Baid, CFA & Founder at Stellar Wealth Partners, and Founding Creator at Chapter talks about his journey in the stock market from his early days, learning through great books on investing to eventually becoming a writer and fund manager himself.
During the episode, Gautam talks about his personal experience of gaining and compounding knowledge, his recommendations (in terms of books, checklists, biases) for first-time investors entering the stock market, and much more.
03:46 - His family background and childhood
09:21 - Compounding of Knowledge: Spent on hours of learnings
14:28 - "Nothing teaches you the biggest lessons of life, more than an empty pocket and empty stomach."
21:19 - His thoughts about 'Value Investing.'
31:35 - Checklists in his investing decisions
33:15 - 3 biases every investor should know
49:28 - "Time is the new status symbol."
50:35 - His book recommendations
Link to Gautam Baid's smallcase: www.stellarwealthpartners.com
Link to Gautam Baid's Chapter: https://getchapter.app/@gautam
Link to Gautam Baid's book: www.TheJoysOfCompounding.com