Chai Pe Charcha with BrandWagon | The Financial Express

Chai Pe Charcha with BrandWagon

As an alternate career path, Gaurav Dagaonkar, co-founder and CEO, Hoopr.ai would’ve chosen cricket

Chai Pe Charcha with BrandWagon
Friends, Shawshank Redemption, Dil Chahta Hai and Shark Tank are Dagaonkar’s favourite films and shows.

Weekends are all about down time. After a week full of work to meet deadlines, everybody needs a breather to relax and recuperate. From watching a favourite web-series to planning a vacation, weekends are designated as family and me time. Gaurav Dagaonkar, co-founder and CEO, Hoopr.ai, talks to BrandWagon Online about his weekends, favourite vacation destination and more.

What is the one thing you like to do when not working?

I read, watch movies, or play with my daughter.

How do you spend your weekends?

Saturdays are usually spent working and Sundays are spent with the family. It’s important for me to recharge my batteries. So off late, I’ve been going out with my daughter and wife for lunch or on long drives. Sometimes we also go to Crossword to check out books. I try really hard (sometimes unsuccessfully) to tune off from work on Sundays.

What are your favourite gadgets?

I like to read and if I don’t have a book in its physical form, it’s most likely present on my Samsung S7+ tab.


On the music front, I love my AKG C414 microphone. I got it four years back and it suits my voice really well. Logic Pro is my favourite digital audio workstation. I usually spend some time fiddling around with beats and record myself singing.


I’m also someone who likes listening to music through different speakers and headphones to understand the mixing and sonic layering. My favourite monitors are made by Genelec and I have them in my home studio and also now have a pair in our office studio.


I’m also a sucker for good quality headphones that don’t cost a lot. I love listening to music through these devices to get a layman’s perspective of how audio sounds. I recently got an old Sony CD player and try listening to music on that. If it sounds good on that, then the headphones are seriously good, regardless of the price.


Also, shout out to Aman Gupta who has made tremendous leaps with Boat. In fact, I always have a pair in my bag. Great value for money. I also like Deciwood, a great value proposition as far as speakers are concerned.

Given an option to choose another career, what would it be?

I would have loved to be a cricket player. In fact, I wanted to be one for a long time. I’m still quite passionate about the sport. There’s just something about being on the field that’s special. I was a left arm fast bowler and loved opening with the new ball.

Which is your favourite vacation spot?

I really enjoyed the vacation we took in Norway. I also would like to visit the Netherlands; I have relatives there. In terms of places we frequent regularly, I’d say Dubai and Sri Lanka. Dubai because I’ve done many shows there and have a lot of friends there. I’d also say Sri Lanka because I’ve done songs in Sri Lanka and have many fans there. In fact, before this crisis, I’d visit Sri Lanka frequently.

I also love going to Kolkata. My in-laws stay there so its always fun to visit plus I love the food there.

A TV show, movie, and an ad campaign that you highly recommend watching.

I still love Friends. It’s a show that has stood the test of time. You can jump into any episode and enjoy it. This from a business perspective makes so much sense; you have folks watching it every single day. The cast, storylines, etc., was just perfect in my opinion. 

I’ve a movie buff and have always watched a lot of movies. In fact, someday I hope to produce a film. One of my favourite films is the Shawshank Redemption. There’s a certain sense of prevailing over odds or the underdog coming out on top. I do watch it from time to time and it’s something that blows me away every time. Highly recommended! One film that I watched many years ago that had a big impact on me was ‘Dil Chahta hai.’ Very different subject from the norm and had amazing music too. It was something that I could relate to. What I appreciated about Farhan Akhtar was that he followed his instincts, and the result is something brilliant. I’ve also been impressed with ‘RRR.’ It takes tremendous vision to make a movie of the size and scale that it is. It’s one step closer towards making a movie in the fantasy space. I know how much energy and passion it takes to execute something like this. Sure, a lot of people may think about doing something that’s similar but executing things and putting out a great final product takes a lot. 

I like the MagicPin ad that we did. It was a great example of moment marketing as a bridge to get noticed and it indeed helped put a relatively new brand out there. In terms of the new TV shows, I personally also love Shark Tank India. It’s a great example of how one should try to be honest with their audience and not simply copy an international format.

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