How to invest in India for growth
A few months back, a startup called GoPayments decided to launch in India.
A couple of months later, GoPayment’s founders realised they had missed out on a big opportunity when they decided to move to India.
The GoPayings team was also keen to explore ways to tap into the existing technology stack in the country.
In February, Go Payments acquired a startup, Kalyan.
In a series of interviews with Business Insider, co-founder and chief executive officer of GoPayng, Vishal Kumar, laid out a roadmap to build out the business and explain how GoPay’s services and business model would work.
Read more: What is GoPay?
What is Kalyans?
Why are there two different companies in India?
What are the challenges that the founders faced when moving to India?
The interview is a fascinating read.
What was your background in finance?
Kumar: We grew up in the US and graduated with a degree in accounting from Stanford University.
We were really into the idea of being independent and we decided to do this as a career because we knew it was something that we really wanted to do and that we could have an impact on the world.
We decided to make our company an investment vehicle.
That was when we decided on the Indian market.
Kumar is a former partner at Goldman Sachs, where he worked as an investment banker and portfolio manager.
He then moved to New York, where his role was to work with technology companies in New York and to help them manage their finances and investments.
He was a member of the investment advisory firm, Managed Capital Advisors.
The group was founded in 2009 and he joined as the company’s first director.
He also joined the board of the venture capital firm, Sequoia Capital.
He was on the investment team of one of the earliest angel investors, BNY Mellon.
The other two directors, Amit and Kalya, joined the company as early as 2013.
What is Kavya?
Kavya is a payment platform.
Kavyas platform is the platform where consumers will make payments, whether they are online or offline.
This is different from the way credit cards work where you make payments to people in person.
Kavyas technology is different because it has the ability to accept both online and offline payments.
You can pay people in-person at a restaurant, or you can pay someone in-store at a kiosk.
You will be able to pay someone at a grocery store or at a gas station, for example.
We have the ability, by default, to accept all types of payments.
It has a lot of different capabilities.
What are the major challenges that you faced when you came to India and what are the lessons learned from your experiences there?
K: Our biggest challenge was the fact that there are a lot more banks in India than there are in the United States.
They have a lot to do with infrastructure.
We wanted to be able for them to connect to our customer base in India and build out our network and infrastructure in India, because it is a much more robust platform.
We needed to build a new network and we needed to be careful about how we would manage our infrastructure in the countries that we are operating in.
We had to be a bit careful.
So, we were a bit cautious about what we were doing in India because we wanted to make sure that our team was comfortable and we wanted them to understand the infrastructure and the processes that we were going through.
Our biggest challenge in India was just the fact of not having a lot banks.
And also the fact there was a lot that had to happen.
We went through this process of talking to various banks in the market and building a very, very strong network and understanding their requirements.
So it was very difficult to move forward with the business without a lot people.
The biggest challenge for us was just to build our network in the way that we needed.
And we had to figure out how to do that without the banks.
We did not have the capacity to move from one country to another.
It was a very difficult journey.
We tried to build things as efficiently as possible.
We talked to banks, but we had no control over their processes.
We had to rely on our team.
We worked with a lot.
And the biggest thing was that they were very patient and they were extremely knowledgeable and we had some experience in this space.
We learnt a lot from them, so it was a great experience.
What challenges were there in India when you were looking to move in 2017?
I think the biggest challenge that we faced was that we had a lot things to work on.
We started from scratch.
We came to the conclusion that we have to be extremely flexible and agile in terms of how we develop our platform.
In India, we are in a very different environment from the US where you can do this with one company and it is all about scaling.
We could have built our platform in a different way and we