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How unemployment in the US drove this young woman entrepreneur to start an experiential learning platform

By Sindhu Kashyaap
March 19, 2022, Updated on : Sun Mar 27 2022 04:45:02 GMT+0000
How unemployment in the US drove this young woman entrepreneur to start an experiential learning platform
Founded by Priyanka Botny, Bengaluru-based Playonomics is an online experiential learning platform for employees to improve their emotional intelligence.
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Priyanka Botny, like many others, in pursuit of a better life, had moved to the US. However, she found herself in a difficult position to start a career due to several issues with her visa. 


“I was hungry to find out the secret to becoming an immigrant entrepreneur in the US. I participated in a business case challenge by OpenIDEO, sponsored by Clinton Global Initiative, and won the challenge in 2014,” Priyanka tells HerStory


Soon after, Priyanka built Playonomics — an online experiential learning platform for employees to improve their emotional intelligence. 

“Often companies focus on IT infrastructure and less prominence is given to employees’ emotions and how it impacts their daily lives and decision-making process. We help in bringing that intelligence to build emotional skills, along with digital transformation at organisations,” Priyanka explains. 

Between 2014 and 2021, Playonomics had to overcome several challenges, including doing research and getting educated on the subject, shipping the product, and putting a team together. 


Started in Santa Clara, California, in 2014, Playonomcis was registered as a Bengaluru-based startup in April 2021. 

What does it do?

Talking about the simplicity of Playonomics’ product, Priyanka explains, “It helps employees go through mock experiences, where Playonomics provides feedback about their emotional skills using human raw data with the help of AI and ML models.” 


She adds the SaaS product will benefit employees as the feedback from various behavioural data analysis reports will present visual insights to improve themselves. 


Speaking of how the product works, Priyanka says, “We collect human interaction data from the number of experiences employees participate and measure their skill level to deliver a report on their emotional quotient.” 


“Our primary research is in decision-making for employees and integrating human emotions into the digital transformation journey of a corporate. We have an in-house tech architecture team, outsourcing the development work and patenting the AI and ML models,” she adds. 

The team

Priyanka roped in Udyatbhanu Singh as the co-founder and CTO, BE, and Senior Andriod Engineer. He is the architect of Playonomics, who is making the minimum viable product (MVP) possible to reach the market. 


Srinath BK, Partner at Playonomics, is a retired VP of TVS Motor Company, with over 40 years of work experience in delivering two-wheelers to the Indian and global markets. 


Priyanka says the startup aims to drive the digital transformation, along with the emotions of employees. 


Playonomics follows a B2C business model, where employees need to participate in experiences and unlock skills. Its B2B model is based on the number of employees per company.

“We charge large scale companies participating in the digital transformation journey based on their employee size and level of integration,” Priyanka explains. 

While the B2C MVP data is easily available and analysed by the expert product using AI models, the B2B product requires high-security infrastructure as it can be implemented with or without IT integration, she says.

The business

Priyanka adds the MVP costs around $25,000, and it took the team over a year from inception to launch it in February 2022. 


She shares the startup spent eight years thoroughly researching before launching the MVP and made continuous improvements for a seamless experience. 

“Now, we have enough data to address the market problems with our solutions. The B2B product will take us another three to six months based on the client’s needs,” Priyanka adds. 

Moving forward, the startup plans to integrate human emotions into the digital transformation process. She adds, “And how well we do this, certainly defines our success criteria.” 


Priyanka says, “We believe the IT infrastructure needs higher adoption, and that can happen with human intervention, understanding the big picture, and excluding the human indulgence.”  


Edited by Suman Singh

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