Aspirations, dreams, hopes and independence is what every entrepreneur craves for and he or she shall have it, provided …its the same buzzwords and jargon that serve to motivate people again and again. Dedication, perseverance and the like. No doubt, as important as they are, we already know so. It’s time we got down to business not because we don’t believe in motivational quotes and words, but because there’s plenty of that everywhere else, in more quantity than required, so much so that the real substance – the core business fundamentals get lost amidst a pool of subjectivity and emotion.
As many readers are no doubt aware, India’s incumbent automakers are a worried lot. With falling sales, new entrants who seem to have made a mark already (Morris Garages’ Hector and Kia Motors’ Seltos), new emission standards due in 2020, an overall consumption slowdown, electric vehicle technology’s imminent rise and the arrival of Chinese Automakers (Great Wall Motors, Changan etc.) on Indian turf in the coming years, the Indian automotive industry is going to witness a bloodbath, unlike it has ever seen since liberalisation.
Amidst this scenario, the fact remains that Indians love cars and want to travel. A lot. Spurred by the millennials and their families and friends in tow, the secondary automotive services market is well and alive, comprising rentals, re-sales and other assorted services. Bangalore Insider got in touch with Priyanshi Choubey, the co-founder of Instacar, a car rental service based on out Bangalore who shed some light on her entrepreneurial journey and what her company means to her.
Give a brief info about your startup?
Instacar is changing road travel in India, one ride at a time. We’re attempting to fill the gap in car rentals by offering seamless high-quality, safe and reliable chauffeur-driven car services. And, making road trips happy again.
What made you start your startup and what problem does it solve?
As most innovators do, we ourselves found the need for clean, reliable, and safe car services. Something beyond hailing cabs on the go. Instacar essentially solves the problems of late cabs, unsafe cars, inexperienced and untrained drivers, and the lack of high-tech tracking systems in cars and car services.
Tell us about yourself, your previous jobs/ventures? What were you doing before this startup?
After completing my post graduation, I started working with my now co-founder in his first company before we started Instacar. I was fresh from college and had no clue how to build and run a business. It has been quite a journey I would say. Learnt a lot of things and got an unforgettable experience.
Where is your startup based out of? Why do you think that is the best place for you?
We’re based out of Bangalore. This city is a melting pot of cultures and diversity. The density of people and organizations here make it the ideal city to run our business. It’s the perfect city with the right clientele.
As a startup founder, what are you paranoid about? What keeps you awake at night?
I don’t think I’m paranoid about anything because that’s when I might lose control. Yes, as a co-founder many things keep me up at night. From ensuring day-to-day operations are running smoothly to solving problems on a daily basis, and everything in between.
Who are your competition and how are you better than them?
I’d say there’s no real competition as such for Instacar. And I say that only because there isn’t anyone doing what we do – chauffeur-driven car services.
How hard is it to have a work-life balance as a startup founder and how do you manage it?
As a co-founder of such a young startup, work-life balance is definitely skewed at the moment, but I don’t push myself to the extent of burning out. It’s important to find time to rest and rejuvenate so you can function and be efficient.
Have you raised funding? If yes, then we would like to know the details. If no then please tell us if you are looking to raise.
Our latest is from Techstars accelerator, we first raised from Hong Kong Based Investor. Yes and looking forward to raise.
What’s the biggest misconception people have about you? Why do they have that? What’s the reality?
I think Initially when people meet me they find I am a very serious kind of person, but it’s actually the opposite. I am a very fun loving person, I think about humour in everything.
And in business, since it’s an operationally heavy business, I need to deal with blue-collared job workers. People feel being a girl I cannot do it, but I do and have to do it.
What gets you excited about this company?
That it’s young and there’s so much scope for growth and scaling up. The product is innovative and adaptable. The team is great. And there are miles to go!
Tell us how a day in your life looks like? Your schedule for a day right from the time you get up till you hit the bed at night.
I try to make and follow a schedule but currently there is no schedule, as sometimes it’s late or entire night and sometimes it’s early morning. Also because our business is 24*7 business operations. I start my day with listing out the things to be done in decreasing order of priority. Day end has no limit.
Tell us about your team and how did you meet each other?
Ishan and me met almost 10 years back, that time had no clue that we would be founders running such a dynamic company. We have our roles defined and both of us are quite supportive of each other, our partnership is going well 🙂
We are building up the team in Bangalore, some good, passionate people from good companies have joined in, and are looking for more such people for different profiles. The single thought in the company which floats around every time is, scale.
Know a great startup story or want to share your own? Write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will get back to you. For more updates follow Bangalore Insider on Facebook and Instagram.