Vivek Pahwa whose startup Desimartini was recently in the news for being acquired for a very hotly debated “less than 10 million $” gave an exclusive interview to WATBlog he clears the air on the 10 million figure, he talks about the Road ahead on SecondShaadi.com which we had discussed earlier and His new investments and How much of his millions is he looking to invest in other startups.
Here is the entire interview
WATBlog: If possible could you share the exact financial of the Desi Martini Deal?
Vivek Pahwa: It is not possible to share the figures on that deal. However, as more discerning readers would have guessed, it was significantly less than $10 million.
WATBlog: Why get into seed funding? Is Vivek Pahwa the entrepreneur turning into an investor?
Vivek Pahwa: Am still very much an entrepreneur. Along with refining and promoting SecondShaadi.com, we also plan to launch another new product of our own in February of 2008. Having said that, we will be open to seed funding internet start-ups along with our own initiatives in the future.
WATBlog: Your first company was into social networking and now you are running SecondShaadi.com. Given the stark difference in scalability of users do you think SecondShaadi is too niche a market to be explored right now?
Vivek Pahwa: I don’t think so – the problem today with industry observers in India is lack of experience of their own!
SecondShaadi.com is doing well – I agree the market is small right now, but it pays to be in a business which is seeing high growth especially in the segment that we are in! We have a solid product and we expect 200,000 users in the first year, which would account for about 2-3% of the overall online matrimonial market in India. High Growth coupled with a strong and profitable business model is a good thing to have in the Indian online space in today’s market.
More importantly, it is a niche that adds value to the users! The general feedback is that people looking for a second marriage would rather visit our site and therefore we feel we can get 90% of such users onto our site. And potential users in this segment are growing extremely fast!
WATBlog:Why did you invest in Antya? & How much have you invested in Antya? What Returns do you expect and by When?
Vivek Pahwa: Antya has been started by a friend of mine. They were looking for financing and I loved the product and we decided to invest. It was more of an opportunistic investment. It is good to be associated with a concept which I think has a good future! I have been a regular user of Antya since the day it was shown to me.
It’s too early to talk about returns – The focus is building the product and creating awareness.
WATBlog: Are you looking for more interent based investments? If yes, what kind of startups and What amount of funding will you provide?
Vivek Pahwa: We are open to investing in innovative internet start-ups – we are looking at seed investments less than $200,000.
Vivek Pahwa is probably one of the first few Indian Entrepreneurs to make millions from a web 2.0 startup. Though it can be attributed to global boom in social networking with facebook being valued at 15 billion $ its still a commendable effort by an Indian in his 20′s. Im sure his story is going to inspire many other entrepreneurs to jump on to the internet bandwagon! We wish Vivek all the best in his new dual role as entrepreneur and investor.