In an interaction, Amit Grover, co-founder and CEO, AHA taxis, explains to FE.com's Kritika Rastogi what the idea behind the venture was, what makes it different from other cab companies and explains how he has created a company culture built around solving one-way travel problems of people on a large scale...
In an interaction, Amit Grover, co-founder and CEO, AHA taxis, explains to FE.com’s Kritika Rastogi what the idea behind the venture was, what makes it different from other cab companies and explains how he has created a company culture built around solving one-way travel problems of people on a large scale. Here are the excerpts:
Q. What was that one thing that made you choose this not-so-easy entrepreneur led start-up path?
I think people who have passion and talent to do something should try being entrepreneurs once in life. It really builds you as an individual. I had many years of corporate experience after my IIT-IIM education and having worked with Infosys, Asian Paints, Onida and Mumbai Angels, I realized that I have the ability to achieve something big, and solve problems for millions across India. So I resigned from my job, and started my first venture in education sector – Nurture Talent Academy, which I ran for 5 years. Entrepreneurship is not easy, but it is very satisfying and I have enjoyed every day, without even 1 moment of thought about going back to a corporate job.
Q. AHA Taxis has been co-founded by 5 partners who are equally qualified and specialise in their own fields. So, don’t you face any differences/conflict between ideas/opinions and, is so, how do you deal with it?
AHA Taxis is solving a huge problem of one-way taxis across India. So it needs best of minds to work together and build solutions in technology, marketing and operations. So, all of us believe that there is a greater challenge out there rather than looking at personal benefits. We live together like brothers and friends. Whenever there are differences, we go with the experts view of that area. We also have a advisors from business and technology background who we seek mentorship from whenever we need.
Q. If any competitor enters your market with deep pockets, how would you reformulate your strategy?
We just need to refocus and keep providing better and newer services for customers. What we have built and are continuing to build is a culture to solve one way travel problem at scale and this is in the AHA Taxis DNA from day one. This is unique about us. Nobody with money can buy or copy our DNA.
Q. Right now you have been providing services for inter-city travel, any other service extension you are planning in future? Please throw some light on new plan or strategy for AHA Taxis?
Outstation travel by taxis is a huge enough problem for us to address. Our strategy is to keep adding more cities, partners and more supply while using technology to build scale. We have to cover entire India and this will give our customers a choice against rail and buses.
Q. How do you see the market one year from now? What is that one opportunity and threat that you see in the near future for your company and how do you intend to deal with it?
I think this sector sector is facing lot of government regulations and media scrutiny. This will be good for professional and ethical players like AHA Taxis and dubious elements will not survive. For example, during odd-even rule in Delhi, lots of private taxi operators who were serving customers without license got caught.
Q. You are growing rapidly by adding newer geographies and alliances, where do you see yourself by the end of 2016?
We aim to win hearts and make our customers as well as vendors and drivers happy. Right now we are expanding into Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Bhopal. By December 2016, se will be serving customers across India.