Getfiscal was started in May 2015 to help SMEs manage their cash flows and simplify the process of raising loan. It already has about 100 costumers on the platform, and has helped raise loans worth over 1 crore. Before starting up, co-founders Aditya Tulsian and Baskar Ganapathy, were a part of the team responsible for launching Intuit’s accounting and tax software in India.
Here are interesting excerpts from the conversation with Co-founder and CEO, Aditya Tulsian, who shares what it takes to quit a good job and startup.
“When we took Intuit’s software to Indian SMEs, we found two things:
First, Indian businesses are not looking for full-fledged accounting software. They want a simple way to manage the basic cash flow – the money-in and money-out.
Second, whenever the business wants a loan, it is a big problem. In India the entire cash flow is being managed on excel sheets. It is cumbersome, time consuming. The amount of effort for a bank to underwrite a loan for 10 lakh is the same as that required for 10 crore, which made the banks completely ignore this segment. That’s where we wanted to create a simple but robust platform to help SMEs manage cash flows, and then use that data to enable an NBFC or a bank to give out a working capital loan.“
“For me, both my father and my wife have their own businesses. I was closely involved with them, right from forming their company to managing their finances. So it only seemed natural.
Second, we felt that the opportunity was so phenomenal, and both Bhaskar and I had spent enough time in this ecosystem in India, that we could quickly go in, use our knowledge and experience and create a business out of it.”
What do you look for in new hires?
“We are a team of 11 people at this point. We look for 2 things:
- We look for passion in the idea. The person has to believe in the idea because the journey is going to be anything but easy.
- We are looking for a person who is willing to learn. Though different flavors of this have been done across the globe, the approach that we have taken, where product led financing is the key, that is, we bring the small businesses on the platform and then help them get a loan; this has not happened. Therefore the team needs to constantly have a learning mindset.”
How difficult or easy is it to onboard the SMEs in India?
“Very clearly, they have a genuine problem of managing everything on excel. Excel though flexible, in the end is manual and very error prone. So we see a lot them adopting our platform, even if they do not need a loan.
We are solving for the entire value chain of financial management, for today, when one wants to create an invoice, he manages it on one excel sheet, and then tracks it on a different excel sheet, checks the status in the bank and then gives all this data to the chartered accountant who then files a tax. So there are multiple platforms that have to be touched for a single invoice. So the pain point itself is huge for them.
The other thing everyone losses their sleep is for money, and we are helping them get a loan. So it is simple logic to adapt it.
Now, onboarding has 2 aspects to it: mind set and migration.
To address the mindset issue, we are targeting SMEs who are less than 4 years in business, because that is where the adopters lie.
For migration, we provide a 5 minute mapping, where you can upload your existing excels. For majority of the existing software, you will have to go out and adopt their invoicing format, but not so with us.”
What tips would you share with the people who are looking to quit their jobs and start up?
“Everyone has his or her own journey, but here is what I think it takes:
- You have to have passion for the idea. If you don’t believe in the idea, there is no point in working on it. The passion can be for any reason; it could be for the huge amount of money, or it could be for the pain point, or you yourself feel the need for it.
- Before you start off, you have to think about a team. While working on the idea, also look for a team. They will help you not only when the chips are down, but they will also complement you. Only then you can go out and create a business, knowing that even if you are not there sometimes, things will be taken care of.”
The idea and its implementation so far looks very promising. We wish Aditya and his team, all the luck in their endeavour.