Ritu Srivastava has been often accused of creating Obino purely for herself. She doesn’t deny it—she has been there, done that and wants to make sure that others have it easier. Her venture, Obino—a virtual weight loss coaching solution—emerged from her personal struggle with weight loss after the birth of her daughter.
“We have grown to touch over 4 lakh lives in just under eight months, so the response has been overwhelmingly positive. We have helped our users lose over 30,000 kilos of weight on the platform, with our free users contributing a large share in the last few months alone,” says Srivastava, founder, Obino.
She narrates her personal experience. “After the birth of my daughter I realised I had put on half of my body weight. I hit the gym, tried myriad fad diets, but to little effect. I even consulted a dietician, and while she helped me loose the weight, she never helped me understand why I was eating what I was, and why it worked. The result— I had little control over my own health.”
It was this lack of transparency that led Srivastava to do her own research about her body, and how to maintain it in a healthy manner. “And this time it worked!” she says. And that’s how Obino, a health and weight loss coaching app was born in August 2014. “We built this app with the basic purpose of helping people lose weight at their own pace at their own convenience and more importantly, in sync with their own body.”
Obino follows a three-pronged strategy to get you to your weight loss goal—a dedicated health coach, a personalised diet and fitness plans, and unique mobile-app based tools that are with you round-the-clock. It gives exactly the same results as one would get with dieticians and personal trainers but a lot more conveniently.
“We were fortunate to have raised our first round of pre-seed funding from health-tech incubator Healthstart even before our official launch. In December 2015 we raised our seed round with RoundGlass Partners,” says Srivastava.
What sets it apart
“If you compare Obino to other health apps, the first thing that stands out is our main focus on wellness, which encompasses both fitness and nutrition. This approach is what sets us apart as we want our customers to be the real heroes, to get a sense of ownership about their personal health goals,” she says.
Another differentiator, according to Srivastava, is that her venture does not compromise on quality when it comes to its coaches. “We ensure a minimum of 6-9 daily touch points between each user and coach and we are able to do this because of our integrated tech platform,” she says. Obino coaches also work in tandem with the medical practitioners of its clients to ensure health coaching that complements lifestyle and chronic disease management. All of the above form part of Obino’s paid/premium coaching programmes which is R9,99-1,799 per month. The free version of the app comes with an Indian calorie counter and in-built pedometer, healthy reminders and recommendations as well as access to the latest information via Obino’s articles and blogs.
Obino says it is the only Indian diet app to be partnering Samsung in India for the latter’s wearables. “We will
soon launch a version of Obino preloaded for the Intex brand of smartphones for India. We are looking forward to touching at least a million lives with this partnership in 2017 alone,” the Obino founder says.