December 30, 2019 | Jaipur, Rajasthan: India is known for its frugal innovation techniques and solutions that have long supported in reducing the negative impact of some pressing problems, prevalent since many years. Using limited and frugal resources, many innovative entrepreneurs have come up with impactful, sustainable and financially viable solutions. With the startup ecosystem thriving across the country, it is about time new-age entrepreneurs also realise the potential of frugal innovation so as to penetrate in new regions and sectors to solve problems.
Quality education has been one of India’s long standing problems, due its to the country’s massive population, limited teachers and lagging infrastructure, leading to a weak K-12 system. While people are able to pick up their mother tongue and local languages spoken within families and friends, there is still a huge struggle in gaining access to good quality training and education services for learning English and other prominent universally acceptable languages. In the age of digital economy, access to the internet and ICT devices (mainly smartphones) has made people more aware of the power of technology to change their lives. However, they have also realised that by not being well-versed in global languages would make them left behind in this highly competitive world.
To explore these aspects in depth, Startup Grind Jaipur hosted Anuradha Agarwal, CEO & Founder of MultiBhashi, for a focussed session on ‘Empowering India through Frugal Innovation’. The session brought out insights from Anuradha’s journey as a technology entrepreneur and how technology, coupled with frugal innovation, shaped her startup idea – MultiBhashi – to solve the problem of learning conversational English.
A journey that actually began with helping her siblings to converse in English turned out to become a business opportunity when she landed up creating a facebook page with educational content that was accepted by people outside her network. This gave birth to the formation of MultiBhashi, that primarily focuses on teaching English through a mobile application to blue and grey collar workforce. By initially bootstrapping to securing multiple fundings, the essence of MultiBhashi’s success has been its frugal approach to the problem.
Of the many things that were covered during the session, being close to customers for feedback and inputs, customise the solution to penetrate deep within the target segment and frequent networking with ecosystem peers for cross-validation have been the three pillars of MultiBhashi’s success. New startups and entrepreneurs start off with limited resources and must consider frugal approaches to ensure that the available funds are used effectively and efficiently to create the right momentum and direction for their ideas to take shape.
The session was hosted at the Collabocorner and was attended by ~20 Startup Grind Jaipur community members from diverse backgrounds.