For small businesses and startups across India, Intuit Circles has been an ally they can count on. The programme provides startups with a personal ecosystem to enable business growth and gain knowledge. They provide them with access to a personal ecosystem of mentors, a thriving community of peers, investors and partners like co-working spaces, incubators and accountants. Startups become financially successful through financial management training and Intuit’s flagship financial management software for small businesses - QuickBooks Online. Tech startups also get the opportunity to partner with Intuit to collaboratively develop solutions for the 4.5 million global customers by integrating their product on the QuickBooks Online platform. Bengaluru-based Invento Robotics is one startup that has been able to benefit from the programme.
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Bringing AI revolution to the physical world
Founded by Balaji Viswanathan (CEO), Mahalakshmi Radhakrushnun (COO/CFO), and Bharath Kumar (CTO), Invento Robotics is a full-stack robotics company that builds a range of service robots that help automate customer engagement in banks, airports, restaurants and other places. Talking about what inspired him to start up, Balaji says, “I was trained in robotics and specialised in AI. But when I graduated, the market was not ready for robotics and AI. Now, there is a perfect storm around computer vision, speech recognition, LIDAR based navigation and hardware prototyping that will make decades of robotic dreams come to fruition.”
Their flagship robot, Mitra, comes with three key abilities: a homegrown contextualised speech recognition algorithm that works offline, facial recognition and indoors navigation. Mitra has shaken hands with British royalty, conversed with Indian political leaders and stolen the show at the three-day Global Entrepreneur Summit (GES). Both Mitra and new robot Spody have received rave reviews globally and been featured in CNN, BBC, SCMP, Nikkei Asia Review and other top publications. Their robots have been adopted by global corporations and are getting accolades not just in India, but also from countries like China which are traditionally strong in hardware. The 32-member Invento Robotics team handles the end-to-end process, all the way from bare metal to enterprise software.
The company’s business challenges revolve around creating a new market. “It’s not that a banker wakes up in the morning and wonders how he can deploy robots in his branches. We are building up demand and trying to set the direction for the industry. Besides, there are plenty of challenges in having to invent a lot of things in the absence of a proper hardware ecosystem,” says Balaji.
A financial tool to help them scale
As they scaled globally, they faced a problem in invoicing customers across the world. They were exploring various tools that would enable them to scale, especially from the finance and operations side.
At a NASSCOM event, they got connected to Intuit Circles programme coordinators and the programme piqued their interest. At the start of this financial year, they moved to Intuit Circles, which provides them with a platform for financial visibility and financial advice.
Invento Robotics uses QuickBooks Online, and in six months they’ve seen positive results. “With QuickBooks Online, we're able to connect to our bank account more easily, do faster account entry and our financial reporting is now better and quicker,” says Balaji. He adds, “We are using that to have better financial control as we raise a large funding round.” He says that startups will benefit from joining Intuit Circles as it is a platform that enables better sharing of best practices.
As they scale to different countries, Invento Robotics is looking to use various features of Intuit Circles, including their tax management solution, to substantially simplify the work for their finance team.
Watch how Intuit Circles helped Invento Robotics leverage QuickBooks Online to handle the invoicing process for global customers more easily.
Like Invento Robotics, you too can scale your business quickly with the help of Intuit Circles. If you are a startup looking to get financially successful or have a product solution that can integrate with QuickBooks Online, click here to apply for the programme.