As Chennai turns 380, the city continues to create ripples across lives by coming up with new age entrepreneurs and change makers who have been adding value to not just the city, but are leaving a mark nationally and internationally and making their presence felt in business, consumer, service and hospitality sectors. We feature 5 such startups from Chennai who have grown over the years and continue the promise of better services and improving experiences for various businesses and consumers.
Sulekha Sulekha is a portal for listing local businesses and services. Satya Prabhakar founded Sulekha in 2000 as a platform for connecting businesses and consumers and today is a leading digital platform for local service businesses in India. Using technology and domain intelligence, the platform seeks to understand the user needs in detail and matches it to verified service professionals. It earns 70% revenue through lead generation and the rest through advertisements. Sulekha's board of directors includes Param Parameswaran (Chairman, Sulekha and Chairman, Indigo Monsoon Group), Promod Haque (Senior Managing Partner, Norwest Venture Partners), Harish Raghavan (Chairman, Gracie Point) and Satya Prabhakar (CEO and Founder).
CiniCloudCiniCloud is an end to end integrated platform for theatre management, ticketing fulfilment and delivery including all other services like locations management, movie cataloguing, screen management, seat layout management, finance management, reporting and analytics that would be needed by the administrators of theatre chains spread across locations.
Suresh Kumar G is founder of cloud-based theatre management system CiniCloud. Suresh, along with his co-founder George Christopher, came up with the idea of a cloud-based theatre management and ticketing platform. "Cinicloud is a bundled package which consists of B2B as well as B2C applications which helps your business grow to next level. You can move your theatre to cloud and manage it from anywhere", claim the founders. CiniCloud, launched operations out of Chennai in early 2018 and aims to hit the $50-million by this yearend.
ZohoZoho Corporation a software development company was founded in 1996 by Sridhar Vembu of Chennai with Tony Thomas in Pleasanton, California. Today it has offices in seven countries with its global headquarters in Chennai and as of 2019 has 12 offices around the world. Zoho partners with top notch VARs, MSPs, SIs, consultants and technology partners. From 1996 to 2009, the company was known as AdventNet, Inc. Since 2005, Zoho has released additional applications.
"At Zoho, we create beautiful software to solve business problems. We believe that software is the ultimate product of the mind and the hands", say the founders.
Wedding RegistrySajan Abraham, founded Zibonga, a Chennai based gift registry, with the aim of eliminating all unwanted, duplicate and re-cycled gifts received during special events such as weddings, birthdays, anniversaries, housewarming ceremony or baby shower. Anyone can open a gift registry to customise the wish list on their website. The host receives only the gifts that they want or even cash. They have tie-ups with furniture, home décor brands, travel partners, consumer electronics, and clothing and accessory stores and charge 5% on transaction fee from the brands.
WayCoolWayCool is a social enterprise started to transform the agri-products supply chain. Launched by Sanjay Dasari and Karthik Jayaraman in 2015, it aims towards modifying the supply chain for agricultural products. Realizing that the food security problem in India was predominantly one of supply chain efficiency, WayCool built a team of industry talent to tackle the problem. The company serves over 50 wholesale clients and has raised Rs120 Cr, as a combination of equity and debt from LGT Impact, prominent angels, and institutional lenders, including Northern Arc Capital and Caspian. WayCool also distributes to 12 retail outlets under the brand, "SunnyBee".
"Today, we work with nearly 50,000 farmers, moving 150 tonnes of products per day across 13 cities. Employing 800+ people, WayCool is already one of India's largest food development and distribution companies, working to positively impact the lives of 500,000 farmers", they claim.