All of us have been through the “after 12th” period where college cut-offs, entrance exams, counseling, career decisions among other things towered over us like threatening giants. What did you do to face them? You might have worked really hard and come out smiling; you might have scrapped the whole thing and decided to continue to go about as usual, taking it as it comes; you might have vented your frustrations in various (mischievous or not) ways, gotten over them and regained focus; you might even have given up, decided to fail and try again next year! But did you startup?Well, Kartik Arora did. He founded biZZare Creations in the summer of 2011. “In the middle of the entire buzz about College cut-offs and Counseling, I decided to break the tension by starting this venture. Initially aimed at providing cutting edge e-Commerce, technological and design solutions to ideas, we got our first big break with an American based company, Group Herbicare and we haven’t looked back ever since,” says Kartik.
The Idea and The Team
biZZare Creations is currently a team of 8 magnanimous young students of Shiv Nadir University at Delhi, who are extremely passionate about website designing, ecommerce, Android and iOS Applications and Graphic Designing. “We are also obsessed with online marketing and if you will excuse the gushing we pretty much adore branding design, Facebook applications, Logo Designing, letterhead designing and all of our illustration agency challenges as well,” says Kartik.
Apart from this, biZZare has also been working on a Primary School Management Software (Cloud based) to be launched on July 1, 2012. It is similar to any other Student ERP Software except that it offers live Parent-Teacher conferencing and also the price at which it is being offered to kindergarten schools is minimal.
Kartik claims that biZZare offers startups a free web service and is more famous in colleges. biZZare targets all startups and since a lot of startups are from college students, they have been partnering with college fests and a few individual events as well. Simultaneously, they are concentrating on getting big clients which have been majorly through references from other clients and friends. They have also started with Facebook adverts as a marketing tool.
“We don’t just create websites; we create the right platform for the ideas to be pitched by the entrepreneurial minds in this country. Many of our websites have been for startups (several more are in pipeline). And the best part about biZZare is its team. We are all college students free to work at whatever time that suits us with no liabilities. Living in one hostel makes our work a lot easier and we get to discuss about it round the clock. In short, the hostels provide us the privileges of a commercial office,” says Kartik.
The biZZare team, in just a year, has managed to clock a 6 figure revenue with over 30 clients from India, United Kingdom and United States. They have partnered with many events in the past - they were the online partners for Idea Futsal Cup 2 which was a corporate football event where big names like Google, WNS, Kingfisher Premium, Radio one, Amrapali Group, Barclays Bank were associated. They have also partnered with Prodigy’11 the business event of Shaheed Sukhdev College of Business Studies, Delhi University. They were also the online partners for the Challengers Futsal Cup 2012 which happened at North Campus of DU where few big names like Nike, Bisleri, and Adgully were associated.
On being students: Joys and Challenges
biZZare is a company which is run by college students and will continue the same way in the future. “It gives students a real time experience of how a company works and the opportunity to learn every aspect of a company from marketing to customer management to the technical part etc.,” says Kartik.
The biggest challenge they faced was to survive the tough competition in the market, to make the clients understand how they were different and thus gain their trust. “This building of the Company-Customer relationship is very important for any startup and we always took it as a personal challenge and strived towards achieving it,” says Kartik. The other major hurdle they faced was to ensure that clients take them seriously despite the fact that they were students. “The perception was unchanged until they had the work in front of themselves and that’s when the cash flow starts from the client. On the non-business end of it, I’d say that operating biZZare parallel to an engineering degree was the biggest challenge of all,” says Kartik.
“Looking back at the year I had started my journey as an entrepreneur, I can say that that one year has taught me more than the 12 years of my school life. And this is just the beginning! There is a lot more to come in future and I am excited about it! I started at a pretty early age, barely 18, and by law was not allowed to incorporate a company in India,” says Kartik.
Kartik faced a lot of discouragement from other people telling him to concentrate more on his studies but he continued to do what he loved. “Being an entrepreneur is just a different phase of your life. Sometimes you’ll realize the downside of being one but sometimes you feel so proud,” he says.
Starting July, they plan to begin sales for their first product i.e. biZZare Primary School Management System (bPSMS) in Delhi/NCR for the first 6 months. Thereafter, they plan to expand it to other parts of the country. “We’ll be coming out with various other biZZare products soon and will continue providing amazing web designs to the world. We also plan to expand the operations of biZZare in Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad by 2013 with students of other colleges handling operations in their respective cities. Our major aim is to become the biggest student run company to be listed under the NSE (National Stock Exchange),” says Kartik.
“I just want to say to all those aspiring student entrepreneurs that learn from your failures as well as successes and never give up and be shameless(as Kunal Bahl says),” concludes Kartik.