It is a known fact that need is the mother of all innovations. The reason behind the launch of most startups is that their founders wanted to solve an issue that affects day-to-day life. The same was the case with Abhishek Shingane. He is a graduate from Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST) but jumped on the booming ecommerce bandwagon with an innovative idea.
His friends and people close to him know him as a passionate person with a desire to scale heights of success. Right after completing his graduation, he along with his friends started mulling the idea of entering the ecommerce industry. This is when the notion of launching an only industrial and office supplies ecommerce portal came to the forefront. Omnikart has created a niche for itself in a short span of time. During this time, it has shipped over 2500 products with an average ticket size of Rs 3000.
Please provide a brief overview of your product/ service.
Omnikart.com is a b2b e-commerce platform and one-stop solution for all industrial needs. It was started by a bunch of IIT Bombay alumni’s who aims to solve the procurement problem existing in the Indian industrial market. After a successful inception in SINE IIT Bombay, Omnikart raised a seed round of funding from WIllfly
Ventures. Presently it operates in 30+ product categories, spanning 100,000 products with well-reputed brands from 1100+ trusted vendors.
What inspired you to build the above product/ service?
I did my Engineering from Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST). In the scorching heat of Trivandrum, I had to make rounds to Chalai Market to get components for my lab works. It was then I thought “We should be doing something for this”. At the same time, my school friends Faisal Ansari and Mandar Zope were facing the same problem during their IIT days. Fast forward in 2014 Faisal disclosed the next big thing to me. All of us were drawn to it having faced the same troubles it made sense to take the plunge.
What is your life mantra?
It doesn’t get easier. You only get better.
What was the most challenging part of your journey till now?
B2B e-commerce is at a very nascent stage in India, so to convince distributor and buyers to conduct business online is a daunting task. They have been doing business in a conventional manner and think that only cloth, electronics items; books can be sold online not industrial equipment. But as they say, “Where there is challenge, solution of that problem is your business opportunity” so these challenges are actually enormous untapped business opportunities.
How did you overcome those challenges?
By approaching people who needed us most & showing them how simple it is.
Share some details about the investments that you have been able to fetch for the business till now.
We have raised an angel round of funding from Willfly Ventures. With the investment we got, we have been able to gain customer’s trust & validate the model. It was more about market acceptance which we achieved well before time.
How do you protect yourself from the problem of Brain Drain?
By developing values in our employees through responsibility. They share a real sense of growth & learning at Omnikart.
According to you, what are the three qualities an individual must have to achieve success?
Patience, Dedication & Team Player.
Which online tools/ services/ apps do you use the most and would like to recommend as well?
ColorNote, Mfg Tech Updates, Pocket Tanks, Duolingo.
Share any one habit which you think makes you more productive.
Reading motivational stuff in the morning.
Share any one habit which you wish to change in yourself.
Drink more water.
Answer in less than 50 words
• One tip to success:
• One mistake you believe every individual must avoid:
Accepting mediocrity & monotony
• One most important lesson that you have learnt till now:
To empathize with people.
What are your plans for next 3 years?
Expand to all Tier 1 & Tier 2 cities. Also, in coming years we would like to solve procurement issues of at least 100,000 customers through or personalized dashboard, genuine products, and services.
If you get a chance to start your career again what would you do differently this time?
Ha! start early and fast.
What are your top three getaway destinations?
Tawang (AP), Trivandrum & my native place.
Share a quote that inspires you the most.
The aim of anything in life should be to do it so well that it becomes an art.