She is a start-up geek with a tremendous interest in high-tech and internet industry. Apart from being a founder and CTO of Mera Medicare, Madhu Khandelwal a series of other Start-ups.
In India the idea of ordering medicines online and delivering at the doorsteps is not very popular, she thought of making patients lives hassle free and help them save on medicines costs and Mera Medicare was launched to bridge the gap without compromising the quality.
SheThePeople.TV conversed with Madhu Khandelwal to know more about Mera Medicare.
Madhu Khandelwal, when did you decide you wanted to be an entrepreneur and what was the idea behind starting ’Mera Medicare’?
When I moved to the USA after getting married to Pankaj, I had easy options such as going for a job or Masters. But taking the Entrepreneurial plunge and creating something meaningful seemed fascinating to me. One of the episodes “Does Healthcare Need Healing?” on Satyamev Jayate where Aamir Khan and the doctor talk about Generic Medicines and their benefits was a complete surprise to me. This gave birth to the idea of Mera Medicare and since then I have tried to create awareness, transparency and efficiency to the Healthcare.
It feels truly amazing to see that so many women are taking the plunge into the Entrepreneurship, which gives me immense hope for digital India.
Where India needs to be updated in the field of medicine, what future plans do you have to take your venture to the next level?
We would like to expand in 50 major cities of India in 2016 and in 100+ cities in next 2 years. Other targets for next two years are:
- Adding two more innovative and profit-making business segment
- Registering 5 Cr Users
- Registering 10,000 Pharmacies
- Reach to 100,000 transactions/ day
We also plan to work on data analytics and big data integration to create more values for our customers. We’ll keep hiring brilliant minds in form of employees or advisers to keep innovating our system and product.
Footing on to medicine world is not so simple in India where the concept of buying medicine online is still a myth. What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced as an entrepreneur?
Till date, our biggest challenge was to finalise the right features and value propositions. When we started working on the idea of Mera Medicare, we thought of creating the best solution and providing all the value propositions from Day 1. In order to achieve that we invested many months in creating those features, however, we soon realised that all those features didn’t attract customers. Then we spent another month or two to de-feature the system.
Another big challenge was to earn credibility. Many patients still don’t believe that medicines can be sold online and delivered at home. To resolve the credibility issues, we have changed our pitch and started focusing on “Delivery from nearby authentic chemist”.
Persistence and Passion make a successful entrepreneur. Even if you don’t have technical skills, business skills or expertise, you can earn them if you have passion and persistence. You can positively influence investors, customers, employees to trust in you.
What do you consider to be your greatest achievement so far?
In terms of business, we have seen many achievements such as partnerships with IHO, AllizHealth, Healthy Billions, etc. However, the most satisfying moment was to receive blessings and appreciation from an elderly lady in very initial phase of Mera Medicare. Even though she was a regular user of those medicines but never received such kind of customer service and discounts in the past.
How did you manage the funding for the base operations initially?
We didn’t really take help from any organisation or networking group, however we truly believe that joining entrepreneurial and networking groups can be highly beneficial to the new entrepreneurs. So far, we have been bootstrapping to operate Mera Medicare.
I believe women can do anything if they decide to. When I moved to the USA and started working on Mera Medicare for India, 99% of my friends and relatives didn’t really believe that I could do this. However, I kept working on.
What advice would you give to fellow entrepreneurs?
My advice to entrepreneurs is to Start Early, Fail Early!
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