5 IIT alumni float Click Labs, an incubator on the lines of Rocket Internet, to hatch 100 startups
While things are changing fast for startups in India, the fact remains that capital access is highly skewed. It’s easy for fairly established companies to raise further capital; things are not that simple for innovative ideas looking to disrupt the market (a fundamental difference when compared to startup Mecca Silicon Valley).
Sensing the crunch of capital for disruptive ideas, Samar Singla founded Click Labs. At its core, Click Labs is a technology solution provider which has always taken a mobile first approach since its inception.
At present, the startup is working in four verticals — Startups/ MVP solutions, mobile gaming, enterprise mobility and Internet of Things (IoT). With headquarters in Chandigarh and a business development team working out of San Francisco, Click Labs is a highly experienced and dexterous team of more than 150 employees, who have executed more than 100 successful applications for mobile, game, small businesses and enterprises in a span of less than three years.
“I see Click Labs as a company enabling sharing economy in India. The company has reached a point where it has the infrastructure to support 100 startups making On Demand Mobile Service solutions in India,” says Samar. Besides Samar, Chinmay Agarwal, Parag Jain, Rohit Goyal and Sanjay Dhakar, all from IIT Delhi, are the other co-founders of Click Labs.
Samar is a serial entrepreneur and alumnus of IIT Delhi and University of Maryland. He came back to India to bring technology to the poultry sector and created Prodigy Foods which is the largest company providing soya substitute as poultry feed today. One year after stabilising the operations he sold off the majority stake in Prodigy to start focussing on the next entrepreneurial gig, Click Labs.
Genesis of the idea
Samar is a huge fan of globalisation thesis concept of Peter Thiel. The basic ideas which have disrupted the Indian market whether it is Flipkart, Zomato, or Ola Cabs, have all stemmed from similar successful applications in the West. So any idea that brings in a lot of efficiency in the way things are done in a particular country is bound to be implemented at other places in the world in due course.
India is a complex market, adoption can be strenuously slow, thus business models need to be moulded. Eventually the idea sticks and gains traction.
How Click Labs is different from other incubators?
“The thing that differentiates us from traditional incubation based models is our focus on a niche area. This focussed approach is helping us create a specialized marketing and production team which can provide sound, practical advice to the incubated companies. We are also leveraging our specialization in B2B on demand mobile services space to use the IP being created for shortening the production cycles for B2C implementations,” says Samar.
“For instance, Jugnoo has been built on the underlying technology that leverages TaxiHawk solution, created by Click Labs for helping taxi companies and city council associations face the competition of Uber and other ride sharing startups,” points out Samar.
The incubator’s first engagement under the startup subsidy model, Boombotix Sync (a patented technology that enables music to be played synchronously over a mobile network — Wifi, 3G, 4G or LTE), recently raised $4M Series A funding. VoteChat, another incubated startup, bagged USD 250,000 in funding from a Brazilian investor.
Road map to incubate 100 startups & future plans
The road to incubating 100 startups is loosely based on Rocket Internet’s model of empowering individual teams with the lessons learnt previously. Since the risk and upside are more balanced, Click Labs believes this brand of entrepreneurship is going to appeal to a lot of motivated people who don’t have the risk appetite demanded by distilled entrepreneurship.
“The future plans involve creating an information conglomerate in India on the lines of Tencent in China or Naspers based out of South Africa. The road to that path would involve touching a billion lives and creating entrepreneurs in every home,” says Samar.