A Story of How Two Childhood Friends from Village has built their startup from Zero to million dollar
A Story of How Two Childhood Friends from Village has built their startup from Zero to million dollar without any investors.
We ( George and Suresh ) founders of Apiclo, and MacAppStudio are two childhood friends from Trichy, a small town in India after working in MNC’s we started creating apps together and got to win many app developer challenges.
We went on to get the most prestigious award called Intel BlackBelts for app development and we are the first in India to get this award. We also got world’s most valuable developer award from Intel and won three Intel developer app challenges and other developer challenges where the cash prizes together were more than 100K USD.
We quit our high paying jobs and H1 offers to start our company to follow our passion and heart for creating awesome apps to touch people lives. People around us said we are crazy stupid and idiots. Everyone moved off from our circle in the toughest times including parents, brothers and relations expect our wives and couple of close friends.
When we quit our companies, my wife was expecting the second baby and George just had his first son. It’s been toughest phases in our lives. We created awesome Mac and iOS products. We thought having enough cash for a year as a runway would save us ( the runway to take off ) but the story was different.
We thought creating an awesome app would change our lives upside down, it’s not the case, the app went to hit top charts in MacAppStore yet the finances are not as we expected. We were very strong that we should focus on creating a great product rather than searching for an investor or doing social networking.
We had passion and persistence of working hard and doing what we love, we created some of the wonderful apps that made us cry when we receive life changing experience emails from the customers.
We create products from the problems that we face.
We have seen highs of a mountain and then the rock bottom of it the next few days. We have been trashed with lots of situations where we were not even able to pay our loans or pay doctor fees of 5 USD but nevertheless, we never ever had a thought to give up anything we just kept focusing and kept building the apps that we loved.
God’s Grace with all the hard work and many sleepless nights, we kept doing what we loved, that is creating apps we are now a million dollar company without any investments all bootstrapped.
We started as two without even the office. After working for 6 months we got a small office. We didn’t even had a fan, we had money to buy one but we didn’t. We wanted to buy it from the income that we generate in that office. It was hot in Chennai and sweating like a hell. More the heat more the fire we had.
We got our first fan in a month. Next Invertor in 3 months as there was power cut for long hours. First Ac in the 5th month. We were just two till 2 years. It’s been crazy two years we don’t want to risk any other till two years we did all products designed and developed working day and night. It’s been crazy schedule. It’s not a joke not even one day we felt why we quit our high paying jobs. It’s all two friends who happily meet have a coffee, design and code what we love for long hours, completing something for the day gives us the kick.
We have created some of the awesome products in very low internet speed which is 1 Mbps and with poor voltage fluctuation. God’s grace now we have 100 Mbps
We developed products that we loved, we created those for our customers and not just for money or for any investor.
George is a hardcore developer, I am a Creative Product Designer and I take care of business. It is like Right Left Brain Combination. Since we both are childhood friends we know each other, we know how we think and act.
I am very aggressive and George is conventional we balance in the middle and we take the best decision in the interest of the customer and we operate on values and principles.
The minimum investment
We had two top ends MacBook Pro brought in the loan which is our only investment along with Time and Energy.
We never spent any money apart from having a domain and a server in a cloud which is very cheap. We never incorporated the company be it as private LTD or LLC or Inc. We never spent money on any fancy office interior. We even registered as a partnership only when a huge MNC asked us to do so to raise an invoice to pay us :).
It’s all about being passionate and working hard. There will be lots of failures and days where we would see the top of the mountain and then the rock bottom of it. You will be trashed before you see the success.
Success will test you whether you are the right person to travel along, it will toast you to the ground and then will give the hand and the smile.
You Name it to be it angry birds, twitter, OMGPop, Some of the great apps are born out of pressure, just before you got broke , it’s like in our movies you will never be saved till the last second you are about to die.
We can take the best lesson from the Mothers, they had to wait 9 months, be calm, passionate, loving the kid and during the labour pain they go through the most painful experience.
The maximum patience, pressure and pain indicate you are about to have an awesome baby the person who can withhold the pressure and pain get to see the baby.
You can’t see a beautiful baby until you go through this path. You can’t see a success until you go through the toughest path, the ones who cross this see it, ones who quit never have a chance to see it.
We believe in God, work hard be crazy. Put your heads down and do what you love and which makes you happy daily.
We were two till our 3rd year and in next one year we grew to 40+, we have built a culture where hardcore values and hard work is recognised and immediate rewards are awarded irrespective of the time frame they joined.
Everyone gets an opportunity here, we give them an old laptop and upon successfully completing a project in that they get an iMac immediately. Few have got double promotions just in 3 weeks of joining.
We have mentored and trained them personally. One day we were about to have our breakfast and asked a guy whether they had any food, their answer was no. Immediately we arranged the food for everyone in the office for the whole day, we have also given them free accommodation and everything to make them comfortable.
Now they have only one thing to focus which is work rest are taken care and they enjoy what they are doing. An App designed and developed with love can be felt across miles.
Most of them are from small villages and town who could not even communicate well in English but they code like hell and we have shipped products to Silicon Valley Startups to Biggest Giants Like Intel.
Success and Money come to you automatically after testing whether you are the right person and whether we deserve that success.
More than the money we have touched millions of customers and have built 40+ team members (brothers). We are one family and one Team with one vision. God is Great.
Now we moved on to the new office as our old office could not hold more than 20 people. Still we have our old office as part of our value and sentiment.
A Journey of thousand miles starts with a single step, coming from a non-business family we are happy and humble that we have bootstrapped this far and this is the first step of success and still a long way to go, we are now coming with some of the great products.
Stay Hungry . Stay Foolish.
P.S. This Post is written to share the passion, pain, sacrifice and hard work traveling through the path as entrepreneurs and startup. Hope it will inspire someone who read and can relate to it.