Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Entrepreneur Speak: Chinmoy Mishra, Founder & CEO, AllizHealth

About Allizhealth:
Building a consumer focused health and wellness platform for early identification tracking and management of health risk and conditions. Based out of Pune, our efforts are to help in the transition from curative to preventive care.Our platform looks to encourage user involvement and design health interventions which are preventive, prescriptive and persuasive in nature.
Chinmoy Mishra, Founder & CEO, AllizHealth
Chinmoy has about 15 years’ experience in the healthcare space and has worked with some leading groups such as - Infosys Technologies and AETNA US healthcare. Post his masters from Babson College, he headed back to India to start his entrepreneurial journey.
At Babson, he was awarded with Babson fellowship and also global student leadership awards. He is a voracious reader and loves reading any under the sun. He loves to cook and if not an entrepreneur, would have surely tested out his culinary skills. 
Please share how it all started and the inspiration or the idea to start?

I have always been in the healthcare space, so you could say I was a bit myopic in my choice. I had always wanted to do something in this field and in early 2013 a very close family member of mine was diagnosed with a debilitating condition; it proved to be the final push for me and my elder sister – Rasmi to venture out and start something of our own. The tragedy brought a sense of sobriety and gave us a very clear direction and vision to move ahead.

Describe the early years and the preparations?

We were always of the opinion that to build our technology platform, we needed to do it in house and would not be outsourcing the same. So before we got started, we wanted to get on board someone who could take care of the entire technology aspect. We were very lucky to have found that person in our partner - Gaurav. We did some preparation in terms of the funds we could put in and the areas we wanted to focus. At the end of the day, when rubber hits the road, all those preparations seemed a bit amateurish.

What has changed since you started the business between then and now?

The journey has been absolutely humbling. We all start out hearing the garage to valley stories and start believing that startups are the fastest way to achieve three commas.  It took LinkedIn 14 years to be an overnight success. So I guess more than anything else, the journey changes you as an individual and on how you look at the world. It turns you into an eternal optimist and be appreciative of all works - small or big, because we come to know the work and sweat that has gone into achieving that overnight success. It makes you a better person.

What are the most important ingredients that make your business successful?

Team - My team is the dearest thing to me. I have a wonderful bunch of people that I have the pleasure of working with and who I know I can trust with my eyes closed. Secondly, we look to move away from traditional B2B models and instead would like to call it more of a B-for-B model. Unless we enable our partners to derive value by pushing the offerings to their end users, we would never be successful. So we look at a model of collaborating and working more closely with our partners to ensure their success.

What are the major success drivers that you believe worked for you?

I believe it is our honesty with the pitch that got us our early adopters and the traction. The space that we are in, is also witnessing a bit of a revolution with regards to adoption of technology. At the same time, our understanding of the domain and technical expertise has helped get the early adopters and traction. I would attribute the success to a combination of changes happening at both macro and micro levels.

What word of advice would you give to young entrepreneurs embarking on the Startup journey?

Be ready to sweat it out, be ready to forget that Hawaiian vacation, be ready forsleepless nights. Yes, the journey is as tough as all the stories, not just for us but for our near and dear ones as well. Have tons and tons of patience, build humility and be ready to do every work the situation demands - small or big. Forget you ever had an ego.

Which are the most common mistakes or pitfalls that budding entrepreneurs need to avoid?

Trying to take advice from too many people - trust me, we know our ventures way better than any advisor ever would. While investors/advisors have put in their savings or precious time, we have put our entire carrier on the line. Listen to everyone, but at the end of the day trust your instincts and go with it. It is perfectly fine to think from your heart once in a while. After all - we are all in it to make a difference.

How do you keep ahead of the technology and what are the measures you take to make your business future-proof?

Being from the technology background, we obviously have an inclination to read and constantly be aware of the advances. Healthcare brings in an additional aspect of regulatory environment as well. We make a point to keep a tab on such changes and adopt them wherever feasible. For instance, we are considering adopting block chain to secure our health records portal. We would possibly be the first healthcare startup in India to adopt this. Initiatives like these would not only help us be top of our game, but also keep us prepared for any future eventualities.

How should a new founder start building a team? Would you like to share your experience?

Our focus has always been building a team with people who we love to work with; can connect without inhibitions and someone who is as passionate as we are. More than pedigrees and fancy qualifications, we have always valued more the willingness of the person to learn and ability to think on his/her feet. We have been fairly successful in putting together such a team. The modicum of success we have had is a lot due to the tireless effort of all team members. They have been able to put in the long hours as they see the venture as their own and not just another job.

What qualities do you look for in angel investors?

I believe investing at an angel stage is certainly a big leap of faith. Firstly big thanks to all our investors for their trust. At an early stage, often we are still in the process of finding our way, trying to throw many things on the wall, hoping some of them stick. So, apart from the capital, in my view an angel investor’s role becomes crucial in helping the venture figure the right direction, the opportunities to pursue and most significantly providing constructive feedback. Nothing gives you more strength than knowing that your investor trusts you and has your back. When looking out for investors, I would certainly look for individuals who can go beyond just capital help.

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