I came across an IITian who has run and sold startups in the US and now set up a 10-person AI services firm in a 250,000 population small town. For India, that’s a tiny place. It was thrilling to find that people are moving back home after a slew of achievements, finding meaningful work (from US and Bangalore), getting locals trained in the newest technologies and raising local incomes without having to push a vision of moving out/going abroad etc.

I grew up in #Bhopal, #Coimbatore and #Cuttack. Bhopal is a populous city but people still have the mentality of…


“A claims 90% #monthovermonth #retention while B claims 96%”.

So #annual retention is 28% and 61% respectively.

B should worry, but A should panic.

If annual revenue per customer is $700, margin 30%, #AdWords conversion is 2% per click, A can bid $3.5 for a click to make no money while B can go to $8.75. All of it even more starkly important for #SaaS with very high build:operate cost ratio (== high operating leverage).

If you rely on high #frequency #smallticket #repeatpurchases, #subscription or #SaaS #revenues, and you have to quote retention in #monthly numbers, you have a serious…


#Surveys are error-prone.

For mostly-offline biz, they are the only way to judge #customerexperience as behavior is invisible. For mostly-online biz, behaviour is fully observable and reduces the need for surveys.

One survey says the top-rated 2019 travel experience in India is a walking tour of Dharavi. If you measured behaviour with repeat visit rates, time spent, number of visitors and $ amounts spent, it probably greatly favours #2 (Old Delhi), #3 (Taj Mahal by superfast train) & #4 (Taj Mahal by express train — huh?)

Surveys fail as respondents

a. don’t know/remember/care about answer

b. conceal answers e.g. …


MakeMyTrip is the fee-taking demand-aggregator for flights + hotels + buses

In traversing the Railways => Flights => Hotels => Buses spectrum, fragmentation increases hugely. The higher the fragmentation, the more the need for not just a booking platform, which Redbus and MMT are, but a more holistic … let’s call…


Oscar Wilde wrote a short story called The Nightingale and the Rose. Read it if you have time — my precis below does it little justice. What this has to do with data will become clearer soon.

‘She said that she would dance with me if I brought her red roses,’ cried the young Student; ‘but in all my garden there is no red rose.’

‘No red rose in all my garden!’ he cried, and his beautiful eyes filled with tears.

The Nightingale hears him and feels for him. It scours the gardens for a red rose bush but finds…


If you had asked my mother, she would say it was because I overlooked one question in the Chemistry paper.

If you asked my teachers in biology they would say, “What’s the big deal? He was studying maths, physics and chemistry all day. If someone studies so much, All India fourth is just about ok. He should have paid more attention to his biology.” If I ever dared to reply that I got through the national medical exams with an under 150 rank, the reply would be “Board exams, board exams, that’s what counts. …


The feeling of delivering a drastic improvement in revenue or cost for a client is a thrill. Having a near-perfect record of big wins makes selling easier. It took us a while to get a compendium of diverse results. Now that we are here, we must capitalize hard on it.

An advisor and mentor who has run sales at the highest levels says one of the most important things in sales is having a credible offering. The most important thing, he says, is Showing Up. So, the last two weeks have found me in Dubai, then India, then California. …


I was in Delhi yesterday to observe the first Shraaddha after my mother’s passing. This is a ceremony that commemorates and acknowledges one’s ancestors. A modernist would interpret the puja as simple-minded ancestor-worship. It IS that. But it also a reminder of the immensity of what you owe, and the value of gratitude.

My company’s name is Euler Systems. It had raised a normal-sized seed round in 2015 from friends for an e-commerce aggregator. We had about a million downloads + web users at peak. We built a product that could keep near-real-time track of prices for 10 million SKUs…


In 2004, I ran the data science team @Yahoo. We had all URLs visited by a set of users and wanted to characterise what net users did. All urls were placed in 20 categories to examine usage. At the top were 3 sites with high + accelerating acquisition, engagement & retention.

#3 Neopets, a virtual pets site, sold for $160m
#2 Myspace, a social network born of a mailing list
#1 Facebook. Every graph of any metric was exponential. I had just left the US, or I would have resigned and joined next day. …


The IIT JEE is one of the most competitive exams in the world. About 500,000 people take the exam and 9,000 get a seat at one of India’s most prestigious engineering institutes, the IITs. These are the doors to social mobility for Indians from the middle classes and middle cities who don’t have capital, or connections, only drive and intelligence. The campuses do welcome worthy contenders from India’s wealthiest families, but the great promise of the IIT JEE is that, where everything else has been debased, they have remained mostly free from copying, corruption, leaked papers, influence and backdoor manipulation…

Himanshu Nautiyal

I am CEO and co-founder of euler-systems.com

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