Today, when businesses are operating mobile and are becoming technologically sound, Pune based startup – Plobal Apps help non-technical business owners to create mobile app with lesser expense and lesser time consumption. The startup not only targets building mobile apps for customers, but also aims at offering integrated technological solutions to enable SMBs to increase their sales and satisfy their customers through their services. Startup Simba came to know about the startup journey and what’s their next plan in an exclusive interview with Plobal Apps’ CEO and Co-founder Atul Poharkar.
Tell us about Plobal Apps and what kind of problem/challenge is it trying to solve in the current Indian scenario?
Plobal Apps is the only technology platform in India that offers mobile apps and integrated business solution to SMBs. Three young entrepreneurs came together two years ago to set up a platform that aimed to enable users to create smartphone applications in case they don’t possess programming skills.
The venture does not only allow non-tech savvy SMB business owners to create an app themselves in 5 minutes but also help them to offer business development solutions to their clients in the most convenient manner. Plobal Apps have a channel partner program with the help of which advertising agencies, web development companies, social media agencies and digital marketing agencies can create fully native apps on both Android and IOS mobile platforms for their clients.
Today, when businesses are operating mobile and are becoming technologically sound, Plobal Apps, help non-technical business owners to create mobile app with lesser expense, lesser time consumption, etc. The features are best for use for the owners do not know How to go mobile.
Tell us about the team/founders behind Plobal Apps? What is their background and expertise?
Plobal Apps’ current CEO and co-founder, Atul Poharkar worked for Icrave.in earlier as a founder and CEO. He looks after complete product development and marketing for the venture.
Plobal Apps’ current CTO, Abhishek Jain was a former CEO of Noaharc & President Products for Webricks. He was also associated with Cross Platform Development and Integration as an expert.
WDM Group’s former head of sales – India and the Middle East Aliasger Motiwalla is the current head of Strategic Partnerships and Sales at Plobal Apps. He also possesses relevant experience in digital publishing, advertising, SaaS products and IT sales.
In which year Plobal Apps was launched? What is the current team size? What is the current revenue size? Where are your offices located? Who are your target audience/clients?
Plobal Tech was launched in October 2012 as a partnership firm. It was converted to Plobal Tech Private Limited in June 2015. The revenue size is 30+ Lacs as recorded in the financial year 2014-15. Plobal Apps has its headquarters in Pune with its offices located in Bangalore and Mumbai.
How is Plobal Apps different from other tech startups in India? Why would your clients consider Plobal Apps?
The venture not only targets building mobile apps for customers, but also aims at offering integrated technological solutions to enable SMBs to increase their sales and satisfy their customers through their services. This makes SMBs competitive for the market rivalry.
The venture is considered best as far as class UI/UX is concerned. This specifies that the experience of clearing apps is made effortless for non-technical business owners. We not only aim at providing technological solutions but also partner with business to resolve the issues they face.
How difficult was it for you to hire quality, skilled and talented people, when you say you are hiring for a startup? What is your hiring strategy?
Hiring technical employees was a real challenge for a startup like us. Hence we started following three steps for recruiting tech people, which include:
1. Logic / Algorithm Tests:
Step-1 deals with testing the basic understanding of the interviewees. Once they solve the algorithm/logic test, they are asked to optimise solutions for time and space considering better solution for the concerned problems.
2. Language Tests:
As soon as the candidate clears his first round, we test him/her for software language test, including PHP, Android, IOS. This is a complex testing where candidates are tested for their knowledge on respective language. We offer different scenarios and ask candidates to find relevant solutions using coding in respective language.
3. Final HR Round:
The final round is the HR round where the candidates are judged by the interviewers on the following grounds:
a) Passion: We look for passion among candidates for solving the problems they are asked to. As we are completely focused on providing world class products and services, we need individuals who are passionate about doing their jobs.
b) Urge to learn: Our HR team tries to find out if the candidates have the level of curiosity to know how a problem could be solved in case they are unable to solve it. At the same time, it important to know if he/she has an urge to learn and the ability to grasp. There are candidates who work to earn not to learn. Our HR personnel try to discover people who are coachable with an urge to learn while earning simultaneously.
c) Perseverance: Startups are in a phase of learning. Therefore, it is important that whoever is hired has a level of perseverance required to keep moving. Accepting the challenges and moving on is not always possible in case of all candidates. Hence HR team needs to be cautious in making an ideal selection in this respect.
We have a very systematic and organised process of hiring to make sure we get right candidate with a right attitude for a particular position.
How has been the journey so far? How tough has been the competition, with so many tech startups already operating in the country?
Within two years of its establishment, Plobal Apps seems to achieve its goal of providing a DO-It-Yourself (DIY) attitude to build best mobile app in the most convenient manner. We targeted revolutionizing the m-commerce space, thereby creating the best potential app market in India.
We offer our app development services to various industries, including hotels, e-commerce, restaurants, lifestyle and real estate businesses. Our DIY services help provide integrated tech solutions to SMBs that increases sales of the customers and satisfy them, thereby making us the more competitive in the market.
What is your plan or strategy to sustain in the long run amid tough competition? Who are your clients?
Until now Plobal Apps has developed almost 600+ apps for leading brands across India from industries concerning hospitality, lifestyle, real estate, etc. We have planned to establish a channel partnership program to help advertising agencies, website development companies, social media agencies and digital marketing companies to produce fully native apps for iOS and Android platforms for the clients utilising their platforms. We have certain strategic partnerships at place currently.
Some of our prestigious clients include Le Meridian, Little Italy, WTF, JW Marriot, Sayaji.
What are your marketing strategies to promote your company? What kind of branding activities you are doing?
We are targeting brand building as far as our marketing strategies are concerned. To achieve this, we try and reach out to resellers and end customers. We showcase our venture that is convenient to be used by non-technical business owners. We are targeting different marketing needs for different markets across the world, including the Middle East, Australia, etc. This is because for the demand from different regions we have different approaches to deal with them. Re-marketing is also an integral part of our marketing plan as we get enormous response from customers across the world and not just one market.
Where do you want to see Plobal Apps 2 years from now?
Seeing our rapid growth, we hope developing around 3000+ mobile apps by December 2016 across e-commerce and hospitality industry. We have already signed strategic partnership deal with leading US and European marker ventures. Until the end of 2017, we will hopefully develop over 10,000 apps across different sectors and locations.
What do you want to tell wannabe young entrepreneurs?
If you are establishing a startup, there are a lot of things to learn at every step of success as well as failure. You must be prepared to take up various roles and not depend upon a concerned person alone for undertaking a task. A startup is a best place to learn and groom. Learning will entail understanding marketing finance, sales and all other aspects of business. You must also be prepared to handle pressure and deal with the challenges that come in your way.
Try to get accustomed to negative comments and feedback. You might face rejection several times but don’t give up. Learn from the rejections and develop yourself. Avoid being rigid. This is because the negative feedback from the market might demand changes in your idea and strategies which you must adapt to for making your venture a success.
What do you have to say about Startup Simba, being the first of its kind video blogging platform for startups?
Startup Simba is one of the responsible and reliable portals that most of the startups are looking for in recent times. It is an immense pleasure to see a website containing video blogging features to help entrepreneurs and startups learn the basics an implement the experiences of other startups into their ventures.