of the week!!
I am going to share journey of my life from a small town Malegaon to Maya Nagri Mumbai. I don’t know how many of you will be interested in reading this. This should be shared on a personal blog but I am sharing it here because everything that I am sharing has a point of entrepreneurship.
The first Businees (Paan ki dukaan):
Malegaon is a small city in Maharashtra (should be known for Power Loom Industry but unfortunately known for Bomb blasts). it is a densely populated city. The major source of Income is Power Loom. There were many poor people working in Power Loom industry as labors. Their children used to put small “Paan Stalls” during vacations. I always saw them making good money. I wanted to have my own “Paan Stall” because I wanted to make money. I was not allowed to involve in any such activities. I was in 6th std at that time. My father being a known person, having some position in the town I had to face many restrictions I was not even allowed to go with those kids. But after seeing those kids I also wanted to get involved in that business. I had 1000 Rs in my piggy bank. The amount was sufficient to start a small paan stall. I simply went to those poor kids and made a verbal contract “I will finance the stalls, I will get all the products from the market , you only have to sit on those stalls. I will take 30% of total profit.” They agreed as this was a very fair deal. In this way my first business started making profit of almost 5000 in first week. Unfortunately I had to close all my stalls within a month as my father came to know about everything. You won’t be surprised that I had 4 stalls when I closed the business. This created a clear image of entrepreneurship or business in my mind, and I totally believe that in India entrepreneurship is all about “Jugaad”.
When I was in 10th std, I started a library cum learning centre where people could come and read good books. I kept 10 Rs per week membership charge. It started of with a bang, as I conducted free seminars and panel discussions with the help of my teachers at public places. I easily got a fund of 25000 from different people. This was not something that I did for money. I wanted to do something that can help people in some way. Frankly,there were only few literate people. I wanted them to know the importance of education and I succeeded to some extent. But I was still a kid, I did what I could at that time. Managing school time and library became very difficult. The library continued till I was there in the city.I left my town after completing 10th. No one from my friends or family took responsibility of the library and finally it got closed.
My father being a doctor always wanted me to be a doctor, my mom wanted me to be an architect, and I had no idea what I was going to do in future. I went to Pune to do my Junior College. Those two years were almost waste because I could not do anything other than studies, libraries and early morning exercises.
Confused with so many streams open, I finally ended up doing engineering in Pune.
Teaching for passion:
Engineering life has been the most exciting experience of my life till today. I started taking home tutions of 10th std to Engineering subjects. I started this activity when I was in Second year. Teaching is something that excites me a lot. I used to get tuition calls from a broker who used to take first month of my sallery. Again keeda of entrepreneurship triggered my brain and my first venture as an engineer came into existence: Xpert Home Tuitions. All I did was; I took a shop act, created a website and did some SEO and calls started flooding on my number for home tuitions. I made good amount of money that helped me start up with my next venture.
My Own Infosys:
While in third year, I saw people getting crazy about their placements, joining aptitude classes and preparing for the placement drive that will start after one year. How crazy was that!!! Even my best buddies joined the aptitude lectures. What I was doing? I was wandering? After Home Tutions I took up some freelancing projects of websites and software. I found myself comfortable with coding and continued with it. I had only feeling that I won’t be going for any job. I wanted to start my own Infosys. With no clear idea of what a company is? With no idea about the difference between product and service company, with only knowledge of some coding in Java and PHP I thought I can start my own Infosys. “””BECAUSE at that time I thought: if Infy is paying me 3.5 lac per anum it must be earning at least 10 lac per anum because of me”””” I dint want to loose that money. So started my own company “e-Lightening Technologies” with four friends, rented a flat for office. Started hunting for clients. We offered cheap web and software services which gave us some clients but that dint continue because of diversified interest of all the co-founders. Studies and business together again was a mess. We all split and I was the only person left who was willing to continue. I dint close the company but started taking only two three projects every month and managed to finish up the college.
Even after the college I had no idea whether I should continue with it or start something else. Finally I decided to leave Pune and go to some other city having more opportunities for business. I found Mumbai nearest and dearest and all the way came to Mumbai to start my company here.
God Blessed Bombay:
God has blessed Mumbai with so many opportunities. If a person is jobless here, he is truly a useless person. I came to Mumbai and started my company here in a shared office at Byculla. I got the mezzanine part to put my setup. Hired two people and started working. In 4 months I got 28 clients. Most of the service based startups fail only because they are not able to make sufficient money at initial stage. I feel really good because I am making good money better than people doing job in MNCs. The best part is seeing your team grow. I now have a team of 5 and a new place at Fort CST and will be shifting there in few days.
Still Thinking of What Next?
I am still thinking what should I do next? though I have spent just five months in Mumbai and as a full time entrepreneur, I want something bigger and better. I am experimenting with some new products in social and advertising sector. I hope I will come up something that will be considered as a BIG Leap for me and my company.
Image Source: Wikipedia, gingerhotels.com