Skillmatics products help children build core skills through systematic play
Skillmatics was founded by Dhvanil Sheth in Mumbai. Initially, the biggest challenge he faced was getting people to join the company when they did not even have a product.
It is one of the 17 startups from the first cohort of Surge, Sequoia India’s rapid scale-up programme for early-stage startups in India.
Skillmatics was initially bootstrapped with Dhvanil’s personal savings. He spent significant time during his stint at Boston Consulting Group (BCG) in Toronto, Canada, working on consumer brands and the retail sector across Asia and North America.
Dhvanil realised that all his clients had the historical advantage of access to the best markets – high per capita income countries with high consumption patterns.
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According to market research firm Euromonitor, the global toys and games market is pegged at around $187 million.
The trigger point that led to the birth of Skillmatics came from the Founder, Dhvanil Sheth’s family. His sister actively chose to move her kids away from mindless consumption of on-screen content towards educational products that were both innovative and interactive.
The company claims to be building a new-age business model that will disrupt a $100 billion global industry. It has built a vertically integrated supply chain with in-house manufacturing to rapidly iterate, launch, and scale new products. Working with product design experts in the US, it offers learning aids, STEM products, and educational games with India’s competitive manufacturing costs and content creation expertise.
Some of the games Skillmatics offers include ‘Brain Games’, which teaches children to use a ‘think and reason approach’ when faced with challenges, and ‘Mind Challenge’, which helps them build logic and problem-solving skills.
Skillmatics became the first Indian brand to sell across Hamleys’ stores all over the world. In fact, within six months of its launch, the product was ranked as the number one educational game on Amazon.
Currently, Skillmatics sells to more than 15 countries through its own website, various ecommerce marketplaces, and an international network of more than 3,000 retail stores with a primary focus on the American market.
The startup has 35 employees and is looking to expand the team rapidly. It plans to grow its revenue 10 times and build a global brand in the coming years. It claims to have already hit $1 million in revenue run-rate.
In April 2019, Skillmatics was chosen as one of the 17 startups for Surge, Sequoia's accelerator programme for early-stage startups in India and Southeast Asia. As part of Surge 01 cohort, each company would receive mentoring and $1.5 million in funding.
It raised close to $2 million as part of the round from Surge and a few angel investors this year.