/How I got my startup idea

How I got my startup idea

Students hesitated to get help fromcounsellors

The idea:YourDost, online platform for counselling and emotional wellness

Eureka moment: When she was at IIT Guwahati in 2008, the suicide of a batchmate upset Richa Singh. The classmate hadn’t been able to take the pressure. “The college had psychologists, but students were hesitant to get help,” she says. Singh decided to set up a platform to address this with her colleague Puneet Manuja.

Early days: They decided to create a platform where users could get help over a call or chat using anonymous ids in 2014.

She did research and talked to as many people as she could to validate the idea and found that almost 90% of respondents were open to using such a platform. She raised $ 1.2 million from Saif Partners.

Now: YourDost has over 800 counsellors and does about 2,000 sessions a day. They have helped around 10 lakh people get support.

Salaried staff don’t know how to manage money

The idea: NiYo Solutions, payroll and benefits platform for employees

Eureka moment: A banker for most of his life in Mumbai, Vinay Bagri started thinking about becoming an entrepreneur after he moved to Bengaluru for three years. He saw that most salaried employees didn’t have a clue about salary management. “There are 22 items that are exempt from taxation but no one could list them. Many fail to declare their investments since it’s a huge hassle and lose out on the money,“ he says.

Early days: Bagri got a commitment for $ 1 million in investment from Prime Ventures’ Sanjay Swamy in 2015. He quit his job at Kotak Mahindra and started NiYo Solutions in 2016. He created a card that could be credited with benefits exempt from tax. The platform also helps users file taxes using its mobile app.

Now: NiYo is available in Delhi, Bengaluru and Mumbai, and has over 50,000 users from 200 companies.

(This article was originally published in The Times of India)

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