This is part of our “Podcast with a Product Entrepreneur” series. Do check out the 30 minute podcast!
His first fling with business was a video game exchange, while at school. Coming from a family of entrepreneurs, the question was never about the “Why”; it was only about the “When”. A computer science and finance graduate, his stint with Deloitte saw him starting up with a technology consulting business that later led him to this technology product idea.
Meet Bhanu Chopra, the Founder and CEO of RateGain – a B2B price comparison SaaS product for the travel industry – as he talks about starting up, go-to market strategies, the CNBC Award, challenges and some priceless advice for all software product entrepreneurs.
In business, Bhanu has demonstrated tremendous agility by making quick decisions. His initial idea of a price comparison website focused on the US market, quickly morphed into a B2B offering, given the challenge of marketing to US out of India. Then by licensing technology and acquiring a few beta customers, he not only validated the idea, quickly, but also generated revenues for reinvestment.
Bhanu advocates a Go-To market approach built on two parameters:-
- Power of a Brand built on thought leadership, where Bhanu humbly accepts being “late in the game”
- Sales Structure customized to the channel and prospective customer personas
Straddling across the hospitality value chain with RateGain, Bhanu sees tremendous opportunities for existing products as well as newer products on pricing optimization using Big Data and predictive analytics.
Also an angel investor, Bhanu recognizes the tremendous passion amongst product entrepreneurs but highlights the imperative to persevere and think about the global market. While the team is critical, he concedes that team building would always be a challenge for product companies in India, given the latency of IT services in influencing engineering talent.
We conclude the interview with Bhanu mentioning two of his favorite product companies – Google and ….. – an awesome data visualization company that is just about to IPO on NASDAQ. If you haven’t guessed the name, do listen to the podcast.