Devesh Chawla, Founder, and CEO, Chatur Ideas – a one-stop-shop for startups
With the supporting business ecosystem that fosters growth and innovation, numerous startups are coming up to solve different problems. However, starting and constructively building a successful startup is not a walk in the garden. One needs the right attitude, knowledge, and several resources for it. Today, we have the founder of Chatur Ideas, a startup enabling platform that serves to solve the problems of entrepreneurs. Tune in to listen to Mr. Devesh Chawla.
About Devesh Chawla
Mr. Devesh Chawla is the founder and CEO of Chatur Ideas, a one-stop solution for startups. Chatur is a Hindi word that translates to “Clever” in English. The platform provides adequate training and investment resources to entrepreneurs.
He has been awarded, recognized, and felicitated with various prestigious awards. Listen to this engaging conversation where he gives an insight into many dilemmas one faces when building a startup.
Devesh gives a detailed account of how his endeavors to build a startup at a young age led him to create Chatur Ideas. After his MBA, he was discouraged from starting his own business by various people in the commute industry. Devesh finally started a high-paying corporate job. But, he always wanted to be an entrepreneur. And that is when it struck him to provide a platform to enable the entrepreneurs to follow their dream. It was a solution for a problem he faced as a starter.
Devesh narrates his share of challenges he faced in the beginning.
- His boss discouraged him, citing that he was too young for it. But, it worked in his favor as several investors on board in his company wanted to give him a chance.
- He was indulging in the day-to-day activities in his startup, shifting his focus from the real problem. Eventually, he learned to delegate and intervene in daily activities only when needed. He shifted his focus to networking and strategizing.
Devesh talks about the first dilemma of whether to go solo or have a co-founder. He feels having a co-founder helps as it adds to the skillset, but one needs to decide based on his/her personality.
He says, “If there are no proper co-founder agreements in place, people are going to face a lot of troubles. I have seen companies fall like a pack of cards.”
He also shares anecdotes to support his statements.
Next, he focuses on reasons that lead to failures. Devesh feels that people need to create a differentiator to set them apart.
He adds, “Everyone wants to replicate what others are doing. They first build a solution and then try to look for a problem.”
Devesh also shares his thoughts on the right time to scale up the business.
Bootstrap vs. Raising Money
Devesh feels the choice between bootstrapping and raising money depends on the entrepreneur’s personality. Though, he is inclined towards initial bootstrapping owing to two reasons:
- Raising money adds tremendous pressure.
- Survival depends entirely on external support. It should rather be used when scaling up, as it then acts as a catalyst.
Bootstrapping also adds confidence in investors, and they see more conviction in an entrepreneur.
Devesh also shares his parameters of persistence, discipline, and focus.
He ends the conversation by talking about the exit strategies which are inspired by the three incidents he shares. He says, “One should exit if you either get a good multiple on what you have invested, or if your investment can get a bigger investor on board.”
He has worked with hundreds of startups including Catapooolt, Strike, Orbit Marketplace, Maax Market, Hubilo, Market Pulse and many more. He also runs entrepreneurship programs across colleges and startups along with joint certification courses with IIT-B Ecell, etc. with his trainers present across the country