European Entrepreneur and founder of Requestio, Dominique Manfredi: On finding his co-founding team in India!
Tell us about your project.
Requestio offers anybody a service to do market research, without having to spend huge amount of time and money. It is a web based SaaS application that lets you create polls and surveys, have them published across websites and social media as per your needs.
There are quite a few online survey tools in the market. How is your product different from others?
Optimized user experience is our main focus, we keep it professional by offering an interface that makes it easy to create surveys. Europe is divided into many small countries with different languages, Requestio solves this problem with an efficient set of multilingual features that lets users translate questionnaires with an easy-to-use interface.
You have developed the product together with a small Indian Software company from Nashik. How did this happen?
During my studies, I started working with an Austrian web developer on Requestio but couldn't afford to give him a full time job. In 2008, I travelled and worked in India where I got confidence in the country and it’s business environment. When I returned home, I made my first attempts to find Indian coders to work with. After some time, I found Nilesh and his team at Adroit Coders from Nashik. They have been working with me since then.
I was very satisfied with the work of Nilesh and his team. We worked for almost 1 year together before I saw him and his team in person for the first time. My first intention, was to check out the team in order to extend Requestio with more features. As a bootstrapped start-up, we discussed other opportunities. One month later, Nilesh flew to Vienna and together we started a new company, Adroit Computing Interactive GmbH.
What is it that you value the most working with Nilesh and his team?
The entire team has capabilities to understand, adapt and create amazing, scalable and user friendly applications. The accessibility and the high availability of Adroit along with usage of cutting edge technologies, enables us to deliver solutions to start-ups and corporations alike.
What were the challenges you faced while working with a team sitting 4.5 hours time difference and 6000km away?
I don't think the distance is the biggest problem, more the time difference. But this is also a major benefit for clients when they wake up and see that most of the work is done while they were sleeping, it gives them a very good feeling and satisfaction. Nilesh and I are now used to working round the clock sharing responsibility. Constantly on chat and video conferencing, even our clients find it good to communicate with the team.
You are the founder of Requestio. You are basically running the business alone, while having outsourced the entire product development and IT to India. For entrepreneurs from Europe is this the way to go about a startup with limited resources?
I am not a techi first of all. As bootstrapped startup, it is quite difficult to run a business alone. As a startup with limited resources offshore outsourcing is a good way to increases the chance to succeed.
What would you advise an European tech start-up that wants to outsource to India?
Finding the right partner in India is an important step for a startup, as it will build the team, the future of the product or service, which is the main concern for companies world wide. Building trust based relationship is the most important thing I can advise. Of course as Europeans, there is a large gap between the way we think and the way how Indians think. Essentially, it is necessary to know the people we are talking to, their background and of course their culture, in both ways.
Would you expect your partner to take some financial risk and get shares in your business? Is this a viable business model for both parties?
It depends on the entrepreneurship level of the people involved. There are many examples where software development companies work for stock options when they feel they can add value to an already fine looking concept. While on the contrary, at times I've seen companies not taking individuals seriously when a split offer is made. It really depends on the situation and the people on both the sides.
Visit Requestio at http://requestio.com