Thursday, May 30, 2013

Educational Start-ups that will Change the world

Udemy serves as an online platform that allows instructors to build online courses on topics of their choosing. Using Udemy’s content platform, they can upload video, PowerPoint presentations, PDFs, audio, zip files and live classes to create courses. Instructors are also allowed to engage and interact with users via online discussion boards.Key features:
  • Founded in February 2010.
  • Launched in May 2010.
  • Launched paid course platform in December 2010.
  • Udemy’s top 10 earning instructors earned >$1.6 million in course sales (as of May 2012).

Coursera, Udacity and EdX
Coursera is an education company that partners with the top universities and organizations in the world to offer courses online for anyone to take, for free. It  offers courses in a wide range of topics, spanning the Humanities, Medicine, Biology, Social Sciences, Mathematics, Business, Computer Science, and many others. Company is offering massive open online courses (MOOCs) and is founded by computer science professors Andrew Ng and Daphne Koller from Stanford University. As of March 2012, Coursera was not yet generating revenue. However the company is working on ways to monetize its incredibly valuable and popular programs.It has two close competitiors in MOOC segment: Udacity and EdX.

Udacity: It is similar to Coursera on most aspects. However the most important point of differnce is that its courses are openly available.  There are no start and finish dates, the courses can be taken at any time and you can work at your own pace, completing each unit or module at you own leisure with no time constraints whatsoever. It was founded by Sebastian Thrun, David Stavens, and Mike Sokolsky. The first two courses ever launched on Udacity both started on 20 February 2012.

EdX: EdX is a non-profit created by founding partners Harvard and MIT. The main point of difference for EdX is Certificates of mastery are available for all courses. Proctored certificates also available if exam is taken under proctored conditions. However there is a fee for this.



The Khan Academy is a non-profit educational website created in 2006 by educator Salman Khan, a graduate of MIT and Harvard Business School. The stated mission is "providing a high quality education for anyone, anywhere." All of the site's resources are available to anyone. The content available on the website is of top quality and they have made a very innovative website by putting in numerous features. I expect similar websites will burgeon in different countries. The project is funded by donations. Additionally, it earned $2,000 per month from ads on the website in 2010 until Khan Academy ceased to accept advertising.

Skill Share
Skillshare is a global community where you can learn real-world skills from incredible teachers. Teaching and learning topics are based on skills people can use in their everyday lives or jobs, like entrepreneurial skills, culinary specialties, and the arts. Skillshare classes also promotes interaction among students as well as between teachers and students.Since getting off the ground in mid-2011 with the help of almost $4 million in funding, this community marketplace for learning, where visitors can learn (or teach) just about anything for a nominal fee, got a solid start in the online learning market.

 Goal Book
Goalbook is a collaboration platform for teachers, parents, and students centered around the achievement of individual student learning goals. It aims to make tracking of special-needs of students with ILPs and IEPs easier, helping to streamline communication, engage parents, and ensure that students and all who work with them are aware of the educational goals being set. You can create goals and see a summary of progress directly on the student profile. Although the concept is very innovative but its not free.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

10 most promising start-ups in India

In the last five years India has seen emergence a large number of innovative startups. Not all will be making profit in the long run and 60-70% might stop their operations due to various reasons. Here I have tried to list few start ups that have that X-factor in them. They are extravagantly innovative and radical. I have made the list of these start ups on certain criteria listed below: 
  1.  These start ups are not more than five years old.
  2. They are the first in their particular field and presently only one of their kinds
  3. Are Very innovative and have a very wide scope, not focusing on any particular niche.

Most promising of all the recent start ups - Instamojo Inc. is a web-based Indian startup founded in 2010 by Aditya Sengupta, Akash Gehani, Harshad Sharma and Sampad Swain. It provides customers a platform to sell digital goods like e-books, reports, comic books, music, software, templates, photos, tutorials etc by listing the item on the website and sharing the web link with others. It seems to be a really promising startup and I feel a lot more companies are going to follow the path paved by Instamojo. A lot more can be done in the field of file sharing and selling over the internet and it can take numerous forms over the next few years.

Chargebee is a recurring online billing solution for websites and online applications. In the current scenario where more and more people are getting involved in developing online portals, applications and e-commerce stores, chargebee can offer a very effective solution for other start ups. So more like its riding the wave of entrepreneurship and startup culture in India. ChargeBee was set up in May 2011 by the four software professionals – Krishnamoorthy S (CEO), Saravanan KP (CTO), Rajaraman S (Product manager) and Thiyagarajan T (Senior developer)  

Phodphad aims to bring a radical changes in the current education system from standardized college curriculum to a more personalized learning experience, thus creating conditions where a person’s natural talent can flourish. Its a Pilani-based education-oriented networking site that aims to make academics a more rounded experience. Phodphad is an online learning platform that aggregates all the video courses available online and structures them for e-learners. The idea was incepted back in May 2010 in BITS Pilani by Nikhil Daga and his team. I have full faith in the potential of the concept.

Harness Handitouch Private Limited (Harness) is an education technology start-up founded by alumni of premier educational and corporate institutions in India and internationally. Their product, Touch-on-Cloud, is a tablet and cloud based learning 'operating' system which disrupts the idea of classrooms, ICT and learning management systems as we think of them today by bridging the digital-physical divide. The solution has applicability in conventional, online as well as distance learning .Touch-on-Cloud effectively addresses problems faced in current conventional and ICT classrooms such as teacher control and lack of student engagement as it enables user generated content creation, real-time classroom collaboration, evaluation and feedback and content management on the cloud.

BabaJobs is a web and mobile start-up dedicated to bringing better job opportunities to the informal job sector (cooks, maids, security guards, office helpers, etc.) by appropriately connecting the right employers and job seekers via the web, mobile apps, SMS, the mobile web and voice services.As more and more people are getting access to internet, Babajobs has a sea of opportunities waiting to be explored in the Indian rural segment. Babajob was founded in Bangalore, India in 2007

HealthKart sources health & wellness products from across the globe & provide them to every Indian via online shopping. Their domain covers categories like Nutrition, Sports and Fitness, Diabetes, Home Devices, Eye, Personal Care, Beauty, Parenting & Health Services. It is one of its type online health and wellness products website which was formed in March 2011. It has great scope as the bloating middle class of India is increasingly becoming health conscious.


Exotel offers Cloud-based business phone systems to SMEs and enables companies to manage customers via inbound voice calls and SMS without getting into the hassles of setting up a full-fledged call centre. the company adds the intelligence of the Internet with telephony to provide all relevant data needed to run a business over voice & SMS. It was Set up in 2011 by BITS graduate Shivakumar Ganesan who teamed up with Ishwar Sridharan, Siddharth Ramesh and Vijay Sharma.

Delight Circle
DelightCircle, a smartphone and tablet app that provides information on new arrivals and offers on existing products to the user, for nearby locations. The app is available on IOS, Android and Blackberry Platforms. Its a good way to connect technology to the real world shopping experience in a manner never seen before. The startup was founded by Baid, Raviteja Dodda, Smriti Kankariya and Yashwant Kamara in June 2011.

Akosha is a service for Indian consumers which helps them in resolving day to day consumer complaints. Akosha provides service to disgruntled consumers by taking up their grievances with companies for a fee.Customers provide details of their complaint. If it is valid, Akosha takes the case and works out a solution. Ankur Singla created this website in August 2009.

Zomato is an Indian website providing information related to restaurants, bars, pubs and clubs, and events at such establishments in cities of India, Sri Lanka, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, Qatar and the Philippines. The Restaurant Guide section currently lists over 98,900 restaurants and menus for restaurants listed on the website. The website was started by Deepinder Goyal in 2008 and was named as in 2011.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Top 10 most successful start-ups in India

India is a country of budding entrepreneurs. Every years a large number of entrepreneurs put in efforts to make a system, a website or a project which they believe is the next big thing. However not all the start-ups are able to continue their journey for over 3 years. Most of them become insolvent or fail due to human resource issues. Here I have listed the top 10 start-ups who have made it to over three years.

Undoubtedly the most successful of Indian online companies, Flipkart is one of the biggest and highest earning online companies in India. Being an early starter in the field of online retail, it has the biggest market share of customers. Headquartered in Bangalore, it was founded by Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal in 2007. In its initial years, Flipkart focused on online sales of books, but it later expanded to electronic goods and a variety of other products. Flipkart offers multiple payment methods like credit card, debit card, net banking, e-gift voucher and Cash on Delivery.

Its a company providing local search services over the Phone, Web, Mobile and SMS. It is headquartered in Mumbai, Maharashtra. Users are required to call a common number and simply tell the human operator what service they are looking for. Text and email alerts are then sent to users listing the best options around them. Recently they have come up with an IPO for fund raising. Just Dial's initial public offer to raise $174 million was oversubscribed nearly 12 times in what marked the country's biggest IPO this year (2013).

Quikr is an online classifieds company based in Mumbai. It was launched on 12 July 2008 and is currently present in 900 cities across India. Quikr provides the local community with a platform to help them buy, sell, rent and find something and address needs across many categories. These categories numbering over 12 and sub-categories over 140 range from Mobiles, real estate, cars, services, jobs, entertainment, furniture, electronics etc

It is among one of the largest e-commerce stores in India closely following Flipkart in terms of volume of sales and customer base. It has been able to provide the most competitive rates in the online retail industry making it a preferred online retailer for many. It was launched in February 2010. has a network of more than 50000 Merchants/Brands, and has over 20 million members (which is 1 out of every 6 internet users in the country) and caters to the shopping needs of customers across 4000+ towns and cities.

redBus, also known as, is India's biggest online bus ticketing company.The company also sells tickets through offline outlets. RedBus is estimated to have a market share of 65 percent. RedBus now faces stiff competition from many new players such as Mantis (Travelyaari), AbhiBus and SimplyBus, but it is believed that none of the other companies have the convenience or bandwidth of Redbus’ offerings that combine consumers, operators and travel agents.It was started in 2005.

Make My Trip
Make my trip is an online ticket booking agency established in 2000. It has a major share of customers in flights and bus ticket booking. It faces close competition with which is a relatively newer player. offers the following booking services : airline, railway and bus tickets and reserve hotel rooms and car rentals throught call center/ visitors also have the option of Car rentals in popular Indian cities

It is an Indian online travel agency and a travel search engine based in Gurgaon, Haryana. offers its customers domestic and international flights, weekend getaways, rail tourism packages, holidays, hotels and trains. The website also offers various time-bound deals from time to time. Founded by Dhruv Shringi, Manish Amin and Sabina Chopra in August 2006. By the way stake is owned by Network18 in this company and Salman Khan is their brand ambassador.

Myntra was established by Mukesh Bansal, Ashutosh Lawania, and Vineet Saxena in February 2007. All three are IIT alumni, and have worked for several start-ups. Myntra is headquartered in Delhi and has been funded by Venture Capital funds like IndoUS, IDG & Accel Partners.  It began its operations in the B2B (business to business) segment with the personalization of gifts, which included T-shirts, mugs and caps to name a few. However, in 2010, the company shifted its strategy to becoming a B2C (business to customer) oriented firm, expanding its catalogue to fashion and lifestyle products.

Ibibo which stands for iBuild, iBond, is an Indian social networking site. It is an umbrella site that offers a variety of applications under its social network.Ibibo was founded in January 2007 by Ashish Kashyap who had formerly served as the Head of Indian Sales and Operations for Google. It has a number of companies under the brand. The key portfolio organizations of the group are (Online Travel); (Online Marketplace); (Online Payments) & (Auto Classifieds).

Book My Show
Its India's largest ticket booking site for Movie Tickets, T20 Tickets, Music Concerts, Sports, Plays, Events, Theater, Cinema & Match Tickets. Apart from this it also has information about Cricket Schedule, Match Reviews, Movie Reviews, T20 Match News. Network 18 invested in this company in March 2007. It sells 1 Lakh (a hundred thousand) tickets in a single day on an average.

Friday, May 17, 2013

10 money saving tips useful in daily life

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Hi friends. In the current times of high inflation, everyone feels a pinch in their pockets while buying things.
Today I am going to give you examples of some commonly used tips and tricks to save money. Some of these might have been used by you already while others might be new. Just take a look:

  1. Keep a track of warranty and guarantee of different stuff. If you already do so well and good. Most of the electronic gadgets and kitchen ware come with an year long warranty. For others who are apathetic to warranty, guarantee, free servicing and stuff like that - Wake Up!!! 
  2. Ask for discount whenever you can. It might surprise you how you can save thousands regularly on simple stuff. There is no harm in asking for it. What can be the worst thing if you ask for it? Your demand will be declined. Well you were anyways going to pay full amount. Just because you were a little shy in asking for discount while buying a product/service you ended up paying 10%-20%. 
  3. Avoid secondhand stuff if it is coming for more than 60% of a new product. This is because for a second hand product you'll later end up paying more for servicing. 
  4. Research the market thoroughly and take an informed decision before buying something. Look up the product on different online stores and visit outlets and stores personally before buying something. Make sure the price you are offered is the best in market.
  5. Never run behind offers, discounts and freebies. Nothing in this world is free. You will be charged somewhere or the other for a free product. The person selling things is also sitting there for profits. 
  6. Rather than buying a replacement for a damaged product/good, check if it can be repaired. IF possible, try getting it repaired in the first place instead of buying a new one. For electronics, get it repaired from genuine shops only.
  7. Secondhand books are a good deal.
  8. Needless to say, be careful and conscious about wastage of electricity. Use energy efficient appliances.
  9. Learn to invest and understand the difference between "A need" and "A want".
  10. Last but the most important one: Educate your kids about money. The earlier you impart financial education to them, the better for the two of you. 
As they say: Money saved is money earned.