If you were wondering where the “E” or the co-host of this blog is, here I am. No, I have not been vacationing, even though I wish I was. I have been super-busy preparing to launch my new startup Pixily and only now I have had a chance to get some time to do my part towards Startable.
I am a serial entrepreneur and spent majority of my adult life in the Boston area. Pixily is my fifth startup which I co-founded with Anand Rajaram and Vikram Kumar in August 2007 shortly after graduating from Wharton. Prior to Pixily, I founded and ran jPeople from 2000 to 2007. jPeople is a high-end technology consulting firm providing technology leadership across all stages of a project for clients like Fidelity and IBM. Some of the projects we provided leadership include Fidelity NetBenefits and Fidelity.com. We were considered experts in a number of technologies that powered the web and that experience is proving very useful with Pixily.
I got my start with entrepreneurship accidentally in 1995. I was playing with a beta version of Windows 95 and realized that it lacked a Launch bar – yes, the launch bar we have come to depend on in windows XP was conspicuously absent. Sensing a need, I started developed a launch bar and released it for free on the web under the name Launchpad 95. Soon people started downloading and giving great feedback. They wanted to know how much it cost. After doing some research on the web, I started charging anywhere from $9.95 to $29.95. By the time I stopped maintaining the product, I had sold over 10,000 copies all over the world.
This entrepreneurial experience taught me some great lessons in market segmentation, pricing, packaging, product development and more importantly customer service. I still use these lessons today.
I met Healy while at Wharton and got to know him quite well while working on the stage as a Stage Manager. A lot of people volunteered to work on the stage but he was one of the few who showed up when he said he would and worked hard. I strongly believe in “do what you say” and not “say what you would like to do”. Commitment and delivery are must have qualities for entrepreneurs since meeting milestones is so integral to the success of a startup. I am happy that he moved to Boston and I am co-hosting this blog with him.
I live in Boston now with my wife Shivani Grover, who is a big support in my endeavors and without whom I would not have gone to Wharton nor would I have this much progress with Pixily.