In Conversation with Abhishek Roy, Co-Founder of FeetApart 1


FeetApart Wellness, a gamified social network based health platform for employee engagement and wellness started its journey in January 2015. This Bangalore based startup was founded by two fitness and health enthusiasts – Abhishek Roy and Ashrith G with an objective to inspire employees of an organization to get healthier. This, in turn, enhances employee productivity within an organization. FeetApart recently received angel funding from Vishal Bali, a senior executive at Nielsen. The entrepreneurial journey of Abhishek and Ashrith is truly inspiring.

Today, we have Abhishek with us in this interview session to tell us about his platform.

FeetApart

Hi Abhishek, glad to have you among us today in this session at conflatingVisions. To start with we would like you to say a few lines about yourself.

I am a techie with 12 years of experience, passed out of Bangalore Institute of Technology. Worked in Aol earlier, lead the data team at Qyuki.

Being a sports lover, I have always wanted to do something related to health & fitness. I have been running marathons for the last eight years and quit smoking as I picked on running. For me, the love to inspire others to pick up a healthy lifestyle is innate.

Who are the other founders of FeetApart? What were you all doing before launching the venture?

Ashrith is the other co-founder. He holds a Computer Science B.E. from PESIT (Bangalore) with eight years of experience, worked in Huawei and Qyuki.

FeetApart

We both were part of the Data team at Qyuki (a social network for talent, ShekarKapur & AR Rahman initiative). The idea took shape when Ashrith (co-founder) suggested building a social network around health and fitness. Ashrit, a teetotaler and a meditator for seven years, conducts online meditation sessions for users across the globe. We realized we both complemented each other with the mind & body well-being experience and we both loved inspiring others to get healthier.

Please tell us about FeetApart. How does it work?

FeetApart aims to reduce overall employer costs by improving the productivity of employees and making them healthier, fitter and better team players. And all of this definitely adds lots of fun to the work environment.

For basic understanding, consider it as a gamified social network for health & wellness within an organization, aimed at improving employee productivity & health.

What invoked you to think of creating such a platform?

I wanted to build something for sports and active lifestyle.




The idea took shape when Ashrith (co-founder) suggested building a social network around health and fitness. We then started brainstorming and came up with a B2B focused employee wellness solution, which is what FeetApart is today.

Share the investment details.

We recently closed an angel funding round led by Vishal Bali, a senior executive at Nielsen. It’s in the news already.

How is the journey so far?

The journey has been one great ride so far with all the components of life mixed in – fun, excitement, drama, disappointment, exuberance & mostly importantly perseverance.

How do you build a successful customer base for FeetApart?

We have so far relied on some social selling and some of our own network to generate a decent customer base. Being extremely user-experience focused has helped a great deal for a very high active user base as well. We are now hiring sales and marketing enthusiasts to grow it further.

What makes you different from your competitors?

We are a data-driven company, other than being health enthusiasts ourselves.

Our fitness app layer is very strong, it is cheat proof to run contests and competitions of any kind for any organization.

What has been the most challenging part of your entrepreneurial journey so far?

Getting initial customers was hard, as the wellness industry is very nascent in India, more so in during 2014-15.

How did you overcome it?

There is only one sure shot solution to overcoming challenges – believing in ourselves and sticking to our vision. We as a team have loads of perseverance.

What are your future plans?

Since we are a SaaS business, we will be selling both in and outside India.

We will be focusing on doing innovations in B2B2C marketing as well.

On the product side, we are integrating with many fitness wearables and apps, other than providing users and organizations with lots of relevant data and actionable insights to improve employee fitness, morale and productivity.

And one last question of this session Abhishek, if you have had one wish…

I am really enjoying building and growing FeetApart. I feel I should have started something like this at least ten years back, obviously catering to the needs of the market at that time.

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