Product Fanatic / Rocket Executor / Go Getter
I’m a software engineer –> product designer –> UX addict –> customer champion –> Frameworks Engine –> Entrepreneur in short.
Started my journey as a student entrepreneur in 2004.
Tasted the blood but succumbed to peer pressure and joined Accenture from college. Worked at Accenture R&D Labs and built an AI product. My first technology intensive and large scale problem and I loved it.
Early 2007, relocated to Norway to work with a startup that Accenture acquired. What is really interesting is that first time I started to look at India and its challenges from outside. I got the reference of a developed country to compare India with. I felt that I must solve some problem for my country. I looked to work on a problem that satisfied two simple conditions
- Leverage my engineering skills and software understanding
- A problem that was already solved in Norway
RouteGuru – India’s first “landmark intelligent driving directions” startup that I cofounded with unarguably the most talented people in the country, Avinash Agrawal and Rajesh Ragavan. We quickly became the first choice of people over Google/Yahoo/other services in India. The product won global recognition and multiple awards. We quickly raised a seed round and world’s best VCs were chasing us. We filed an Indian patent. BUT. After a roller coaster ride with no salary cheque for three continuous years, and experiencing the challenges of scaling a venture in an early product ecosystem in India, we decided to shut down RouteGuru after about 3 years of wonderful learning experience.
“We did not earn money but knowledge and invaluable experience”.
EKO – A low-cost, last-mile infrastructure that bridges access to formal banking needs for millions of underserved people through the most innovative mobile technology platform that is designed exclusively for them. I joined a bunch of friends who were dreaming much bigger than I ever dreamt of. They challenged the existing banking system in India and were crazy enough to believe that they could actually do it. Soon, India’s largest public and private sector banks (SBI, ICICI & YES bank) joined hands to share the vision.
I joined Eko really early stage. No customers, no revenue. I played several roles from being the Business Development to HR to Engineering to the Product Head. Lastly I was responsible for massive business growth, customer retention, and channel retention. Today, Eko has processed more than $1 billion and helps ~6 million customers save and share their hard-earned money in the most convenient and secure manner. Eko turned profitable in 2014 after 6 years in operation. It received an aggregate funding of $12 million from CGAP (subsidiary of World Bank and Bill & Melinda Gates foundation), Technology Development Board (Govt. of India), Creation Investments (Social VC Fund) and grants through multiple development agencies. After 5 years at Eko, I decided to step back a little and figure out another problem that I would love to solve for rest of my life.
I relocated to Silicon Valley and enrolled myself for a 1 year MS in Software Management program at Carnegie Mellon University, SV campus.
I’m excited with the way it is getting easier to experiment and discover something that can truly simplify lives of people globally. Around April 2015, I began an experiment that tinkers with the very basics of social networking and I’m always happy to connect with people who want to make a dent in this life. I believe
“People with the same feather flock together”
I am reachable at Gmail and Twitter as ‘GPIYUSH’