We wish to own this paradigm as pioneers and what better way than walking the talk ?
We as founder, all being engineers, are fundamentally trained to CREATE but still aren’t well versed with the essential business skills like raising finance, sales, marketing and hiring the right team hence it becomes all the more necessary to develop and learn these skills by practicing and breathing these functions day in day out. This was an important intention with which we set out to build foundations of our career and our startup.
Hence short term exits like 5 years time frame, trying to build something without wanting to remain invested in the long term and then desperately looking for an exit to get rich quickly before the trend loses the steam …all these never suited our personality and hence was never on our cards. One needs taste, character and strong urge to CREATE long term value and it only comes with spending time on problems. Mimicking trends which are being funded, satisfying an urge to be in limelight by paying media, getting charged up by copy pasting models are all recipes to fall in mediocrity. Failure is till good as it resets your game and gives you another attempt but mediocrity dooms you for life.
Rather, from the beginning our horizons were bigger, more in multiples of decades, and we wanted to sail the perils of the sea. We took a conscious SALES-FUNDING approach (a contrary bet in the tough macro economic conditions when competitors were shutting down in the year 2010) from the beginning and have loved it every moment from the start. It has broadened our horizons of thinking and has made us strong from within. We have learnt to control the insecurity & fear provoked by occasional muted sales number, but it is a necessary evil to keep building enough antibodies for the lifetime.
From an operational standpoint we are SALES-FUNDED (100% yoy growth in revenue since last 3 years). We raised paltry seed Loan Facility Facility Facility s of 2 Lakhs in initial stages from family. Periodically with rising confidence & results, working capital crisis and growth capital expenditures fresh Loan Facility Facility Facility s at various stages were infused @12% rate of interest from
(ii) personal family savings
(iii) and friends.
And have raised around 1 crore Rs in total till date in Loan Facility Facility Facility s from profits being ploughed back time and again. What we have realized is that results achieved independently builds an ecosystem of self-belief around all participating stakeholders.
Till date consciously we have shyed away from external Angel Funding because
(i) one we are not looking for short term self exits, instead long term game and disruptive change is on our mind
(ii) two the freedom to innovate & design solutions by having the monopoly of decision making in initial years helps in guiding on what’s best for the long term vision of the company
(iii) three raising funds through SALES against the time spent in convincing an Angel Investor is definitely a better use of time. It allows one to build invaluable skills for the long term and shape the idea better by ironing out wrinkles. It is like self-apprenticeship under the mentor-ship of ‘market’ which gives you very less room for error.
One big benefit of this approach is that one learns as an entrepreneur to avoid a trap of living the approvals of one man/group of investors/veteran mentors as validators, which is a privilege and freedom that any creative individual loves to have. No I am not talking about reinventing the wheel again by making rookie mistakes, nor am I avoiding the responsibility and pressure to answer stakeholders but yes I am talking about building character, self-confidence and risk taking capacity by burning fingers. An entrepreneur learns to develop a core belief i.e adoption of products/services by customer/client shall always be the right validation mechanism for any business model. This belief cements an entrepreneur’s career for the long run because they develop this habit to continuously conduct risky experiments of value creation as a tactical response to lack of growth at various junctures of the journey. One has to practice this enough again and again so that it becomes a habitual response of the mind against such situations, this ability is the beginning of mastery towards building companies.
Try this approach of FUNDINGG! and you will add a core weapon to your arsenal, a powerful mindset, that one needs when one competes with the BIG BOYS, for BUSINESS at the end of day is SELLING whatever VALUE PROPOSITION you have created.
Raise funds from the pockets of your Customers/Clients and earn their blessings !!!