Manik Kinra, Sitashwa Srivastava, Pradeep Sonthalia; Co-Founders, creADivity

13th Jan 2009
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Ion ago, someone came up with the crazy idea of capturing people like you and me on a recording device and trapping us within a large box. Well, that’s the basic working idea behind the concept of the television, isn’t it? Can you imagine what it must’ve sounded like to the majority of people at the time of its invention? Crazy! Yes, but the line between eccentricity and brilliance is a very fine one. All around us are thinking, imaginative people who, I’m quite sure, all harbour their own dreams and ideas. They might not go on to invent the next generation television set but what if someone could give them a platform to showcase their ideas?

In October 2008, Manik Kinra, Sitashwa Srivastava and Pradeep Sonthalia decided to co-found creADivity, a technology-based platform for people who are interested in giving vent to their creative energies. So you must wonder what exactly does creAdivity do? “creADivity is a technology-based platform for people who are interested in giving vent to their creative energies but do not have the right outlet to do so. Simultaneously, it is a place where organizations, especially small and medium enterprises, can get innovative solutions to their advertising and marketing related problems.” Say the founders. “creADivity has, within it, a marketplace which brings potential clients in touch with the ‘creatives’ – the management, design students, free-lancers, professional designers and artists who form the imaginative, artistic core. The creatives can also collaborate among themselves using custom built professional networking tools made available to them by creADivity.”


creADivity is a first of its kind platform to bring the enterprises and creatives at same forum and produce an environment of competitiveness. Unlike most other creative/advertising platforms creADivity brings a unique advantage of competitions for selection thereby removing any chances of customer dissatisfaction or plagiarism. Also it aims to become an engine for an end to end advertising & creative service provider unlike most others who fill in one or two blocks of the entire chain.


creADivity started with none, and has now grown to 275, creatives in a matter of three months. They acquired 10 clients on the way, which includes designing for events like TiE Entrepreneurial Summit 2008. In terms of scaling the venture, there are suitable plans and strategy in place including launching of new products like creADpack to a virtual advertising testing lab (creIDea Lab). They are also looking at adding a few international clients for Design Outsourcing engagements. It is still very early days for crAdivity and the entire venture is run on a shoe-string budget --- this naturally limits the range of activities they can invest in. Says Manik Kinra: “In terms of client acquisition, creADivity provides a unique proposition with online creative solution building which isn’t heard of in India and hence makes it more difficult to convince the clients. Above all, the challenge lies in the kind of different things that we end up doing from formatting presentations to building the entire strategy plan for the coming quarters.And yes, amongst all the things – keeping the motivation levels high is the most difficult of the lot!” He adds that the turning point for the venture is “Yet to come, if I may say so! But there has been some special moments in the small time we have spent in market and one of them is winning the TiE EAP award in July 2008; making creADivity a TiE Venture.”


creADivity plans to target the SME market for their advertising and marketing needs and give a platform to creatives to showcase what they can deliver. “In terms of the market size, we are targeting 5% of the overall advertising market for SMEs. In terms of vision, we haven’t spent time on drafting a line which would come down to what we want to achieve – but it boils down to two things --- market-wise, capturing 5% market and in terms of a philosophical goal --- to replace the word ‘creativity’ with ‘creADivity’ .” This is their vision: to make a mark in the SME Advertising Market and more importantly provide a platform to creatives to showcase their talent; as well as replace creativity with “creADivity”.


It’s hard work, running a business. So why do they do it? What made them decide to be entrepreneurs? Manik says: ”I think it’s the satisfaction and the pleasure you derive out of the small achievements that you make by being an entrepreneur which drives so many to leave the plush jobs and get into entrepreneurship. Also, the kind of opportunities which exists in the growing Indian market is another reason for having an inclination towards entrepreneurship.” At the same time, there are difficulties. The founders of creADivity feel that the motivation factor is the most critical one. Manik says there have been instances “when, at least I, felt like giving up but then that’s where the team comes in handy. Overall I don’t think there has been a situation where we felt like moving off and I am hoping the situation doesn’t come in future too.” And the pleasure and satisfaction they derive from any small achievement – whether it be acquiring a small client with just 5000 INR as revenue or even getting the website pages up and running – that is immeasurable. It is their belief that the success of this venture can open many new streams for young creatives and hence there is much to prove with the success of creADivity. And that, as they told us, is “surely reason enough to keep us on our feet always”.


Though they modestly claim that it is too early for them to be giving advice --- “we still haven’t blossomed” ---the founders of creADivity suggest that you, as a budding entrepreneur, “Follow your dreams, stay focused and once you have decided what you want to do – Just go for it!”


YourStory thanks creADivity and Manik Kinra for sharing their story with us. We shall continue to bring you the latest developments with creADivity. Stay tuned!

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