We need a balanced policy structure for start-ups : Founder, TAS
New Delhi, Feb 6 (KNN) Trident Analytical Solutions (TAS) , and IT firm based in Kanpur, intends to work on some of the latest as well as pre-existing time tested technologies and software in the market with main area of expertise in ‘Technology and Analytics’ . With a huge collective experience in programming on different languages, data analysis and management platforms, Trident now is planning to enter into the realm of online graphic game development as well.
In conversation with, Amitesh Mishra, Founder and CEO of TAS, KNN got an insight into the IT based start-up.
1. Please tell us something about your start-up. What was the notion behind bringing up 'Trident Analytical Solutions'?
Trident Analytical Solutions is a company that works in mainly online space. We are working on two interesting domains at present. One is "Social Media Management" and second is "Internet in Hindi". One of the main motives behind starting up this business was to provide solid technology based services in Kanpur and Uttar Pradesh. To help people with employment as well as creating awareness of internet and the necessity to use it in native languages.
2. What is so unique about your business that provides you competitive advantage?
We are working on a very novel idea of providing internet services in Hindi. Our platform www.shabdanagari.in is the first service on internet that offers an exclusively Hindi user interface as well as the ability to create your own content in Hindi. With over 65 Crore Hindi speakers and hardly any internet platforms in Hindi, there was a huge gap in the supply and demand which we are filling with the help of this service.
3. What is the potential market size for your product today? And what it is growth rate?
Our potential market size for this platform is over 65 crores Hindi speakers across the country. Internet is penetrating very fast in this market segment. A report from IAMAI says that next 100M internet users will be more comfortable in local languages and there will be huge demand of internet based services in local languages in near future.
4. How do you advertise your business?
Ours is an online business. We mainly make use of internet and social media for the promotion of our services. Some of the platforms/techniques which are extensively used by us are Google Adwords, Facebook Ads, SEO as well as SMO. Other than that, we also make use of offline channels like events, banners, Ads along with PR and other marketing channels.
5. What risks have you faced till now and what issues still exist?
One of the main challenge that we are facing with this platform is people's inclination towards using English on internet. It's something that has become a habit for them and it is difficult to make them understand the benefits of using internet in their native language. A challenge with our other social media platform http://sociota.net is the presence of dozens of competitors in that space. Social Media APIs are available for free and many internet based services (including the giants like hootsuite.com or sproutsocial.com) are offering services in this space.
6. What is the current size of your start-up, in terms of employees, as well as, annual turnover?
We are operating with a team of around 15 people at present. There are 5+ programmers, 3+ designers and 3+ content writers along with other profiles like marketing, administrations, HR etc. Our turnover this year is over 25L INR.
7. Entrepreneurs have certain cashflow projections and forecast analysis before starting a business. How much investment did you require at the initial stage of building up your business and how did you manage to acquire the required funds?
We are a company incubated at IIT Kanpur and had access to a seed fund of 25 Lakhs from IIT Kanpur and SIDBI. Along with that we injected another 25 Lakhs+ from our own sources. We also had investments from some friends and relatives. Right now, we are working with Kanpur Angels and Ah! Ventures to raise our first round of investment for further development and promotion.
8. Do you think the current policy structure is favourable for start-up ventures in India?
No. There is a long way to go. There are a number of problems which we need to address at the policy level. On one hand there is excessive mushrooming of startups in cities like Bangalore and on the other hand there is complete absence of quality startups in cities like Kanpur. We need to make sure that the policy is conductive to the growth of quality start-ups and at the same time it demotes the excessive growth of startups in certain segments. Both of the extremes are dangerous. We need to establish a balance.
9. If you had one piece of advice to someone just starting out, what would it be?
Work hard and don’t give up.