Taking Wings - Rajath Kedilaya, YourCabs.com
|Family background||:||First generation entrepreneur|
|More than 1 company?||:||No|
|Graduated from||:||IIT Bombay|
|Former employer||:||Wipro EcoEnergy|
|Area of responsibility
|Favourite book/movie||:||In books, favorite authors are Roald Dahl, Salinger, Wodehouse & Mark Twain. Watch all genres of movies; no specific like.|
|Stage of the company||:||Initial scale-up|
|Source of idea||:||It was an obvious missing link in the Indian travel space and it's also a concept doing very well outside India|
|No of Employees
|No of locations
|No of customers
||:||Over Rs 20 lakh|
|Primary source of initial funding
|Primary source of additional funding
|Raised Institutional Capital?||:||No|
YourCabs, a company based out of Bangalore, is an aggregation portal in the car rental space. Simply put, it is a platform to search for, and book cabs.
What we offer is a convenient offline (via phone) and online platform to book long-distance and intra-city cabs, by aggregating small and large fleet owners in a highly fragmented industry. Currently, the car rental industry in India is very disorganized; resulting in inefficiencies, non-standard pricing, and an unreliable quality of service. Yourcabs plans to be a critical intermediary in this space by creating a platform connecting consumers concerned about price and reliability, with cab owners keen on increasing their fleet utilization and expanding their customer base.
We started our operations in March 2011, and within a span of 5 months, we have created a strong network of over 20 vendors in Bangalore and clocked over 350 bookings. Over 90% of these bookings are outstation or long-distance, and the rest are divided between local packages and airport transfers.
At YourCabs, our plan is to first strengthen our operations in Bangalore, ironing out any platform and logistical issues, before expanding to other major cities. We plan to expand to other cities (such as Mumbai and Delhi) over the next 6-8 months.
The best advice I got...
Was from the movie “V for Vendetta”: There are no certainties in life, only opportunities. This applies particularly well for a startup environment – one which is full of risk and uncertainties – one where nothing can be taken for granted. Things never work out the way we expect them to and there is only one way to work though it: by keeping our eyes open for all forms of opportunities, and then, making a concerted effort to grab them.
The defining moment…
It took us two weeks to get our first customer and then had five new customers the very next day. Seeing your ideas take shape and generate revenues is a big kick and I would pick that as the defining moment.
What keeps me awake at night…
A mix of anxiety, excitement, and on-the-ground issues!
I thought I would give up ...
We received no response for the first couple of weeks. Thankfully, the thought hasn’t re-occurred to me since then!
My word of advice for others...
1. Take the plunge and get the product/prototype out as soon as possible:
We spent a lot of time initially, thinking about the product and adding more features, instead of deploying it – a big mistake. These days we deploy a new feature immediately on our live site and then tweak it, as and when we get a feedback.
2. Be flexible and very open to feedback and changes, but don’t compromise on the long-term vision.
It’s important to have a long-term vision and move towards it, but at the same time, it’s important to be flexible and be prepared for a lot of short-term changes in strategy. It’s a tough balance to maintain. As clichéd as it may sound, in a B2C segment, customer is the king, and it’s very important to keep all feedback channels open.
3. Concentrate on scaling up and building a great team.
It’s very important to have a strong team especially when you have plans to scale up. Recruiting is highly time-consuming, and talent always difficult to find, but you simply cannot compromise on the quality of people you bring in.
You can check out the whole story at Indian Express here.
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