[Tech30] These two engineers generated lakhs in revenue with their startup GigIndia
Two engineering students from Pune from middle-class families, whose parents had simple government jobs, decided to venture into entrepreneurship during their college days. In fact, the duo decided to not sit for college placements and started to think about solving a more pressing problem in India – finding jobs.
Sahil Sharma and Aditya Shirole did not inform their parents that they had bypassed their college placements. It was only after their startup began generating lakhs in revenue that they told their families about their venture. Even before their first venture together, the two classmates and friends had engaged in various tech projects for their college.
The duo founded GigIndia in January 2017 when they were in their final year of engineering. The startup focusses on the gig economy by helping companies in hiring the right kind of people while giving an opportunity to potential job seekers to look for employment of their choice.
GigIndia helps people find full-time employment and also helps others like students and homemakers seeking part-time jobs.
Idea for the venture
Speaking on how they came across the idea for their startup, Sahil says,
“During our college days, we saw that many of our friends wanted to work for certain companies but were unable to do so because of various factors. We thought, why not create a platform, which will help them work remotely?”
GigIndia founders: Sahil Sharma (left) and Aditya Shirole
Globally, the gig economy is a trillion-dollar-plus industry and has been recording steady growth every year with both employers and employees finding it beneficial. In fact, in India, it is estimated to be worth about $23 billion by 2025, with unicorns like Uber and Ola leading the way.
However, it is not just a strong domain for the blue-collar workforce as white-collar jobs are now in greater demand.
GigIndia realised the potential of the unmet demand where it can bring together both employers and employees through the optimum use of technology. The startup uses artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to bring about the perfect match.
Matching skills and needs
GigIndia claims to be able to curate the right kind of workforce, turning out to be a win-win situation for those seeking such services, as well as, those who have such skills.
Sahil says, “The quality of work for any organisation is directly proportional to the quality of the workforce.” The startup focusses on what matters the most - the speed of execution along with the quality, leading to good customer experience.
Leveraging AI and ML, GigIndia has been able to meet the job requirements of high-growth tech startups in the segments of fintech, ride-hailing, delivery, logistics, content, etc. Sahil says the startup has over seven lakh registered users on its app and has served more than 100 customers.
At present, GigIndia’s focus lies in categories of telecallers, field agents, brand influencers, and content creators - jobs with mid-range skills.
Strong investor interest
On the growth recorded by GigIndia, Sahil says that it has surpassed all expectations: be it in revenue, commissions earned on the transaction, or number of customers. In fact, the GigIndia Co-founder claimed that the startup even has a high customer retention rate.
This kind of growth has evinced strong investor interest with both venture capital and seed investors funding the startup. China-based Ganesh Ventures and Japan’s M&S Partners are GigIndia’s investors. S Ramadorai, former CEO of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has also invested in the startup as an angel investor.
GigIndia also has a fair competition from other players with a similar value proposition in the market.
But Sahil says, “It is good that there is healthy competition as more people are understanding the value of gig economy. We are doing really well and competing against established players also.”
The startup has lined up ambitious plans for going forward. At present, GigIndia is present in 12 cities, which are largely the metros and plans to expand soon to 35 locations as individuals from Tier-II locations are able to find employment opportunities.
At the same time, it also plans to add newer kind of customers, who would be the larger corporates in addition to high growth startups.
Sahil says, “We are committed to empowering students, job seekers, and homemakers to generate that additional source of income by working part-time.”
(Edited by Suman Singh)
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