Utility bill payment has a new name- ApnaBill
There are 500mn utility bill payment users in India. Mayank Jain, Sameer Jain, and Sandeep Kumar are determined to get a slice of this pie through their online bill payment company called ApnaBill.com. They explain to YourStory about the existing bottlenecks in online payment of utility bills and how they are removing them.
Why an entrepreneur? Why didn't you pursue a regular job?
Regular jobs get boring after a period of time. A 9 to 5 job can never give the adrenaline rush a startup has... Being an entrepreneur, you can do things the way you want them to be. If you have a great idea and you also know how to deliver it - why give it away? Besides - the risk involved, is totally worth the returns!
Something on starting years- challenges, struggles
Getting things organized so that an idea can be implemented; Finding the right team which has the same enthusiasm as you; Organizing initial funds and finance management
Turning point in your business
ApnaBill.com selected (amongst 14 other startups) to showcase at Proto.in July 08 edition - more than 100 startups have reportedly applied for the showcase event.
What drives you?
Coming up with an idea and seeing it grow from a just being on paper to an actual saleable product! The fact that people love to use your product is one of the biggest driving factor. Startups generally involve movement of large amount of money which someone working in a regular job can never imagine and see in his/her work lifetime. Finally it is Recognition.
Your Inspiration / Role Model
My Parents - they have always taught us to look beyond the comfort zone and the never-say-die spirit.
On business model - the differentiators of your business, the business model, how do you plan to scale-up Differentiators:
Every other player in Utility Bill Payment industry is either manual in nature or has a very bad online user experience. While making ApnaBill.com, we have made sure to solve both of these problems very effectively. Our systems are almost 100% automated, online and tend to give the user the best possible experience. Moreover, we take complete ownership of the bill payments that we facilitate. We have a very active customer query resolution cell - which all key market players' lack. We make sure that each and every customer complaint gets resolved and each customer query gets answered. Top that up with the fact that we do not charge any transaction fees. A 100 rupees coupon for just 100 rupees! Now, can you beat that? Competitors like the banks do not provide Validity coupons for Prepaid Recharge - which ApnaBill.com provided from Day 1 after going live.
We are in process of partnering up with more bill payment services so that we get a pan India presence for all possible bill payment products. Targeting unexplored verticals in the bill payment industry (500M users by 08-09, growing 200% annually) is another area which we are exploring.
Growth drivers / vision for your enterprise
ApnaBill.com wants to be the One Stop Shop for Online Utility Bill Payments in India.
Key Requirements to grow your business
ApnaBill.com is looking at following key requirements to grow the business
- Coverage of all prepaid/postpaid/utility bills across India
- Bill payments via Mobile Phones
- Viral channels for advertising
- Targeting unexplored industry verticals in Bill Payment Industry
Tips for budding entrepreneur
Entrepreneurship is the road less traveled; it has high risks involved and can sometimes make you think that why you did even tried this? BUT whatever may happen, do not give into the problems - every problem has a solution, all you need to do is see through it. The end result would totally be worth all the efforts.
I do not think there is any thrill that can go through the human heart like that felt by the inventor as he sees some creation of the brain unfolding to success.
- Nikola Tesla