How this startup is using tech to connect brands with the right salespeople
If you are a young brand, selling – a central element to the success of a business – is one of the biggest challenges.
Rachit Mathur, Dilkash Malhotra, J P Rout, and Aasheesh Watts, who had known each other for a decade while working in different fields, realised sales is the primary problem for a startup.
The co-founders of Avenue Growth with an advisor.
To solve this, they startedin 2018, a sales-as-a-service platform. All a company has to do is go to the platform, fill in the requirement of its sales objectives, and Avenue Growth finds the perfect salesperson for the job.
The startup trains graduates from rural towns before deploying them to a company based on requirements.
"Hiring the right sales talent can be time consuming, expensive, and tiresome. Sales outsourcing can help your brand get recognised with affordable rates," says Rachit.
The co-founders claim that the Gurugram-based startup has created employment opportunities for more than 25,000 salespeople so far. At present, it has over 25,000 growth specialists serving more than 500 brands.
"Outsourcing helps your product get recognised without you worrying about it constantly. You can focus entirely on the development of the product and we can help you get established. With Avenue Growth, you get to pay as you move forward," adds the co-founder.
The early days
Rachit had known Dilkash for a decade after working in sales for the same company. The duo constantly discussed the idea of starting something of their own.
JP and Aasheesh, who were senior professionals in the marketing and sales industries, decided to join the duo after meeting up at a sales event.
Rachit spent the whole of 2017 in research and finally, the four launched Avenue Growth a year later.
He says, "We started speaking to large business holders and got a positive reply. That is how we started. It took us about seven months of whiteboarding and then we launched Avenue Growth.”
The first client acquired by the startup came through a reference and Avenue Growth was paid $30,000.
The business model
Avenue Growth wants brands to focus on their product and not on sales. Its business model is completely app-driven – companies have to fill in their sales requirements while on the employment spectrum, individuals can apply on the app for sales jobs.
Once a requirement is posted, the startup trains young individuals with that in focus. It also helps accelerate a company’s growth when a product is launched by ensuring that the product gets all the attention it needs in the sales department.
Avenue Growth ties up with several employment generation agencies in smaller towns to find prospective salespeople for brands. The startup trains young graduates in soft skills and about a brand's ethos. These individuals are trained so that they can work at an FMCG company in one quarter and a finance company in the next.
According to the co-founders, Avenue Growth works on an annual fee to manage the sales personnel and takes a margin out of the outcome.
It competes with the unorganised industry, where boutique agencies can use its fleet of trained sales personnel to deliver focussed sales objectives.
Market opportunities and what lies ahead
According to the Avenue Growth, the outsourcing market is currently valued at $150 billion and is projected to double itself to $300 billion by 2021.
The co-founders believe that more than half of small businesses (52 percent) plan to outsource their business processes, presenting a huge opportunity for the startup to grow.
Rachit says that the potential market size for Avenue Growth is around $40 billion in India and $650 billion globally.
The startup claims to have worked with brands like Google, Flipkart, and eBay, amongst others.
The next step, says Rachit, is to make Avenue Growth an Artificial Intelligence (AI) based platform that will be able to predict sales requirements by regions.
Over the next 18 months, it wants to stabilise its client base and expand to new brands. At present, the startup has over 200 clients and want to reach more than 2,000 brands by 2025.
(Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta)