An Electronics and Power engineer from NIT Nagpur, Devendra Sarda had worked for a couple of decades in various verticals with a few startups and MNC’s like HCL and MPhasis. Around September 2011, Devendra was looking for some reasonable media to advertise about his spouse’s home tuition and he wasn’t satisfied with what he found.
“I realized that there is no option available which could help us to target the exact clientele. Simultaneously for Service Providers/Shop keepers also, there was no media available to get refined information,” says Devendra. He found the idea exciting enough to quit his job (SAP HR Consultant) and concentrate on the idea full time. This is how ApneAreaMein took birth.
In Devendra’s words, “ApneAreaMein stands for creating a value for society and small businesses. It is to help individuals to effectively use technology and Web for information and effective communication hence saving time and fuel to source anything needed on day today basis.” ApneAreaMein is currently in Pune and lists down everything one can find around his or her area. This includes everything from doctors near you, to people who’re selling second hand stuff in your area to jobs and property.
And the good thing about ApneAreaMein is that it has relevant listings (in all sections I tried). “In each of 10 areas we have around 150 Categories, which might be increasing to 200 soon. In an area on an average 700 Shops are listed, where a resident of the area can reach within 15-20 minutes,” says Devendra about the listings. Devendra claims that one of the critical aspects of the list is that these are not copied, rather collected by our executives from Shop to Shop or from the data, which was sent to them by Shops. ApneAreaMein gets more than 3000 page views a day currently.
Devendra used to handle everything himself but now has a small team of 9 to take care of things and is looking to start operations in 5 cities/200 areas this year (Mumbai is already on the way). In terms of raising capital to scale, Devendra is in talks with a few angels and will be pitching more as they generate traction.