Startup Name: Vconnect Media (www.vconnectpr.com)
Founders: Megha Gajbhiye and Shilpa Bhowmick.
Founded year: April 2018.
Let’s start our discussion with the founder of the VConnect
Hi Megha, can you give a brief about yourself?
Hi, we are a media startup where we provide branding solutions to startups and also we have a magazine which is entirely dedicated on startups and this is the first magazine from Central India which is working on startups. VConnect was founded by us, Megha Gajbhiye and Shilpa Bhowmick, at the beginning of this year. We left our jobs last year around November and started working on establishing VConnect and now here we are.
Our media backgrounds have helped us a lot in this startup. Since we have worked with organizations like Hindustan Time, The Pioneer, Free Press Journal, UNICEF, we got a handful of knowledge about how media works and what is the gap that we need to fill in.
What are the factors which influenced you to start the startup?
Honestly, we never thought of startup. We were doing a series of stories on startups for our respective organizations. During that course of time, we realized that media is not interested in startups. And the startups need a platform to tell their stories. It was then; it clicked us that why not we come up with something that can fill this gap for the startups.
Also, we found that startups were not very familiar with media and this also was a big problem as to why both of them were strangers to each other. Our jobs helped a lot here and as we started learning more and more about startups, we found an opportunity in this gap.
How did your journey start towards your dream?
It was not very good but not disastrous as well. We would say it was exactly how it should have been. Teaching us something new, every day. Things that we did not think we would face but we did and somehow overcame them without getting too much disappointed.
The journey from the idea of a magazine to its launch.
“It was more than 2 months that we applied for the title for the magazine and after the title, we struggled a lot for the certificate of RNI. We almost waited for 6 months, to get the RNI certificate. In the course of applying for RNI certificate and launching the first edition of the magazine, we learned many things that we will soon be sharing with everyone. For us the process of unending learning has just begun, especially in the business world”, says Megha and Shilpa unanimously.
As I have interviewed many people in these 3 to 4months as of my experience initial journey to setup startup is not so easy? What is your opinion on it?
It is not easy when you are lacking clarity, and that comes gradually. When you start learning about the whole process and start building things.
What are the biggest misconception people have about you? Why do they have that? What’s the reality?
Being girls our contention was questioned initially. Like people doubted our potential to start this firm and the magazine. Once we did it, all their doubts were cleared we hope. Why that we really can’t say.
How you funded your startup?
It’s entirely bootstrapped from our savings, and now the business model has started rolling out.
About startup? Why people should opt your startup?
Because we are giving them a solution more than that a platform to tell their stories with a longer shelf life. It is not just the struggle we want to share but the product. We are trying to create a coffee table book of startups through our magazine and VConnect is already working on events and PR of individuals and companies.
Is the startup growing at good phase according to your plans? What are the upcoming plans from your end?
No, not exactly as planned because we had to change the course of action with time and according to the market. We thought of a startup magazine with just stories but now we have changed it to a magazine, which can answer questions to problems and we are experimenting more.
I think everyone has some inspiring person in their life and some taglines? Who are they what is their role in your startup life?
Since we both are from the same college. In fact, we are senior-junior of the same course, our HOD Pushpendra Pal Singh was the same, he is the most inspiring person for us. Whenever we faced some difficulty or whenever we got nervous, he used to say just this, “Apan kar lenge”. Don’t know why it gives us so much encouragement and inspiration.
Whenever we are stuck somewhere we repeat this to ourselves and we start working. Also, we absolutely adore Steve Jobs. Can’t think of anything more inspiring. The focus and the passion he had for his work and the kind of clarity, the punctuality, and he really meant when he said that “people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do”. He was enough crazy.
Apart from this, we both have a very special liking for stories, credits to our journalism background. We love hearing from people and they inspire us in our daily lives the most. Our friends, our acquaintances and colleagues, there is so much inspiration around.
What your stack on the competition? Who are your competitors? How you are overcoming them?
As of now, we don’t have direct competition here. Yes, we have a few websites who are doing the somewhat similar thing but, I don’t think that is going to affect us right now.
How is business running? Please provide your financial situation what is expected revenue in the future?
We are not earning profits right now obviously but we are at par. Since we are bootstrapped, our initial investment has been recovered. We circulate the earnings into the business only because, we are not looking for funding as of now.
How hard is it to have a work-life balance as a startup founder and how do you manage it?
It is very difficult for both of us. We are not managing it perfectly but whenever possible we find time for our family and friends. We have started taking time out for our closed ones now, earlier that also felt like a task. It becomes a task when we try to get some time out for ourselves. We miss that ‘Me time’. We will surely learn this also.
What is your opinion on Startupsindia.in?
It is a great platform and you guys are really doing a great job. We need such platforms where we can find people from different domains. I think we need to read more stories on Startupsindia.in, bring in more and more stories.
What is your experience as an Entrepreneur?
Amazing till now. We are really enjoying the twists and turns, the small successes and bigger challenges. We don’t think we are entrepreneurs yet, mentally. Because entrepreneurs are focused and exceptional people and we are yet to reach that stage.
Last but not list as you are woman entrepreneur I am asking this question. Why many women are not into business or Entrepreneurship?
Talking about it briefly, it is probably because, since birth, not many girls get to take decisions on their own. The leadership skills are not developed at all among them. Which is one reason why girls don’t opt for entrepreneurship and also the social pressure of succeeding at any cost, failing is never an option for women, which is wrong. But things are changing now, and they are positively changing.
Let conclude our discussion anything you want to say for young India.
Young India is very smart and talented. They are ready to take risks. It is amazing to see people of our age, in fact, younger than us are running a business successfully. This is one more thing that we are highly inspired with.
Thanks, Megha for joining us and sharing your journey.
Thanks, Dev and startupsindia.
This is DevJ signing of from startupsindia. Tomorrow lets us connect with another success story.