Meet HerMoneyTalks & Avasarshala! Two startups from Kochi, they embody the spirit of the ecosystem in their city. Read more about the Kochi ecosystem here.
From no support to emerging as one of the startup ecosystem hubs, the Kochi ecosystem has come a long way. Today, there is immense support from all directions and young entrepreneurs have endless opportunities here. One such successful startup that stands out is HerMoneyTalks.
HerMoneyTalks is a one-stop financial platform for all women. They aim to eradicate the problem that all women treat financial management as an additional responsibility or something that they have a hard time understanding. They want to make a difference in the way women manage finances. The startup wants to build an ecosystem for women to become better money managers.
The platform gives support and special focus to women entrepreneurs. They aim to make sure that women get visibility through investors and expand their reach through networking. In a nutshell, it is all about managing finances and books better both in business and their personal life.
Challenges & Future Plans
In terms of financing, HerMoneyTalks is completely bootstrapped. In the end, what matters is the time, effort, and talent of the team. However, the startup is currently looking for funding. They are pitching their ideas and having conversations with numerous investors.
Read more about HerMoneyTalks milestones :
Marketing strategies used are majorly digital and leveraging social media. They are firm believers of the word of mouth publicity and hence use various tools for the same. Social media channels like LinkedIn, Facebook, and specially Whatsapp groups play a major role. HerMoneyTalks also conducts occasional webinars and workshops that seem to get good traction.
HerMoneyTalks has faced a major drawback during the pandemic. Initially, they conducted B2B workshops for financial literacy, targeting corporates and colleges. However, they struggled to do it online. There was not only a lack of coordination and management but their method lost its value virtually. The problem is that people are already fed up with workshops and things are slowly losing their value. People are themselves confused about where to go and where not to.
The startup has both long term and short term plans. First, they want to create women-led circles in various cities that focus on financial empowerment. Bangalore, Kochi, and Delhi already have one and now they want to expand their reach. The aim is to make their presence felt everywhere. Finally, HerMoneyTalks wants to reach and help at least 1 lakh woman by the end of 2021.
In conclusion, Kochi is a small city and it has used that to its advantage. Everything here is personal and so it is easy to get visibility and support. In fact, the market too is small and easy to enter.
With the Kochi system being well connected, it makes it one of the ideal places for startups to be born and flourish. It is not only open but each kind of venture has access to any resources they may want. The Kelara Startup Mission and its programs have helped numerous startups, one of the successful ones being Avasarshala.
It is an edtech startup started for students studying in class 1st to 12th; a one-stop-shop for students to get access to resources and materials. Many parents face the issue of lack of awareness in terms of the scholarships or competitions that are taking place. To help solve this problem, Avasarshala assists in giving them engagement, exposure, and increased awareness. The startup is reliable and focusses on giving the children what may suit their talents, capabilities, and interests.
The mission is to become a place that shapes young leaders for tomorrow. In simpler words, make them resilient, confident, and future-ready.
Challenges & Future Plans
In terms of funding, the startup is completely bootstrapped and they have not relied on any external funding for growth. However, they have been recipients of some grants and are still waiting to receive them.
Avasarshala uses various marketing strategies. One of them is the strong referral model that they have created, it works like a charm. Before the pandemic, direct interaction with customers and beneficiaries was a strategy that seemed to be working well. However, the pandemic called for some changes. Avasarshala started with engagement-based events for both the parents and students. One such event was the “Challenge Series” that got tremendous traction with about 1000+ parents that signed up. It was featured in papers and the Madrid based ecosystem selected them for the Top 10 Innovations during COVID!
Read more about the services Avasarshala offers:
Like almost every other startup, Avasarshala too faced challenges when it came to accessing funds. Even though they have been relying on grant support, grants have not been released due to the pandemic situation. Secondly, there is also the problem of getting access to the right resources since they are unsure about who to reach out for the same. Finally, even though not so prominent, it seems like the quality of interactions has slightly declined over time.
The future plans of the startup include shifting to a model where they settle the business in one city and then expand to others. Moreover, they are also building a new product, hoping for it to come out soon and be a huge success. Apart from this, the short term goal is to bring in as many people as they can and help them with their services.
In a nutshell, the ecosystem is friendly and space where any kind of venture can flourish. Both the state and the startups are extremely collaborative and you can rely on them to be redirected to the right place with ample opportunities and information.