Ruchit Garg's 9slides gets acquired by Limeade, an employee engagement platform
9slides has had an insightful story. Started by Ruchit Garg in 2011, the company made tools to make presentations more effective and then pivoted to a solution in the learning and training space. Now, 9slides has been acquired by Limeade, an employee engagement platform. Financial details have not been revealed but from Limeroad's perspective, the move has been made to stay ahead in the competitive corporate wellness market.
A Lukhnow boy, Ruchit Garg went to the US in 1999 to get his Masters in Computers Application. Post this, he joined Prologix for two years before starting a mobile VAS company in India which was his first attempt at starting up. He then moved to Microsoft and in the meanwhile, also co-founded another startup in India- eventnu.com which was a marketplace for events. But all his startup efforts had not payed off. Working for Microsoft, he moved to the US in 2008 and in 2011, he made one more attempt with 99slides and dived into the startup with all his heart. "Leaving Microsoft to start my own company was by far the most pivotal moment in my career. This created limitless possibilities of who I could be and what I could achieve," says Ruchit.
9slides had started out as a product to make presentations more effective. Over time, Ruchit and team realized that the solution was being used more and more in the learning and training space. And this is when 9slides pivoted to an online training solution. A 500 Startups company, it delivers mobile technology for employees to watch video presentations, answer quizzes to test their knowledge, and create their own presentations to share. 9Slides also provides real-time analytics to employers on completion rates and comprehension. And Limeade was one of the biggest customers for 9slides.
Limeade is an online employee wellness platform that raised $25 million in 2014. Limeade has tools on its platform which help in keeping employees focused and efficient. "We’re creating an engaging experience that inspires people to improve health and well-being, while addressing the needs of HR leaders who want fun, simple solutions that work,” said Henry Albrecht, CEO of Limeade. “The 9Slides team has built game-changing technology that we know will delight our customers, and inspire employees to take control of their own health and well-being.”
The corporate wellness and workforce automation space is a massive area for startups but is usually away from the media glare. MindTickle is one of the big success stories from Pune which has customers globally. Peel Works is another company in the space which has been growing silently away from the spotlight. The market size is huge and with increasing debates around the future of workplace, more and more innovations will be tried out at offices around the world. A startup playing in this field requires: a) a solid product b) netowrks into a few big corporates to test out the product. For 9slides, it took a couple of years to pivot to a model that worked and once streamlines, they were able to get more customers and have also found an exit via one of them.