Start-ups in CA; Possibilities & Challenges

Start up, not a new word these days. We have been hearing this word since quite few years. It has now been a dream of every youngster out there to get them into this sort of thing. This sort of thing ! What is this thing? What is start-up? Why people out there are keen to get into this? Start-ups these days have not only attracted the attention of experts, business persons and other stakeholders, its success stories have also become a hot topic of discussion in the towns across the globe.

Start-up; an entrepreneurial venture or a new business  in the form of a company, a partnership or temporary organization, designed to search for a repeatable and scalable business modal, is what the literal meaning comes out to be.

This business modal, where persons from different spheres as well as students, earlier or later in their graduate school make a commitment to turn an idea into carrying out a business, out of the funds accumulated, borrowed or inherited, to run and exist on a platform that promises to fulfill the basic expectations, needs and tries to solve the problems in the society and get a living out of it, the revenues.

Alike start-ups being famous in other streams, it has also to do with some great scopes in our CA fraternity too. Today every CA as well as CA students aspire to engage themselves into an entrepreneurial adventure and start something new on their own. Starting an entrepreneurial venture is never easy but however there is nothing that can hold you from starting one if your dedication and determinations are high. There are million opportunities and trillion possibilities. Along with the possibilities, there also come challenges and risks. Here, in this piece, has been featured few success start-up stories from our CA profession that will let us discover what the real possibilities and what the actual challenges are.

Gauri Devidayal, a qualified Chartered Accountant, a law graduate from the University College London and currently donning the owner’s role at her Mumbai based restaurant, The Table. 'I am not a risk-taking entrepreneur by nature, but I’ve definitely caught the bug now having run this business, and I enjoy it.'

Gauri left a lucrative career as a tax consultant with Price Waterhouse Coopers and later with KPMG in London, where she lived for eight years. She says she had that entrepreneurial instincts within in her that let her cope with one biggest change in her life and she claims she’s happy doing that. The Table, Mumbai based restaurant today serves fine quality dining experience to thousands per week. The diners range from solo to family. Every bit of hospitality that the couple thinks must be given is given indeed at great space and affordable cost. She, as of now, is happy serving there as the managing person. 

Gurgaon based Tanmay, Rohit and Yash getting some time after their article ship hours tried shaping their ideas and getting them printed on t-shirts co-founded a small business of printing t-shirts and selling them. 'Initially, when I proposed this idea to the boys, they turned crazy and tried shutting me up quoting ‘t-shirt salesman’, but today they thank me upon receiving the 2/3rd share of  80K per month roughly' says Rohit, co-founder TRY T-shirts. When asked about the scale of operation of their small business they claimed it to be of smaller one as of now but they showed confidence of making it to 1M Rupee business by the year 2016. 'We have got all our plans on paper waiting its proper execution by the end of each months of 2016' tells another co-founder, Yash, TRY T-shirts.

Also when our team inquired what the functions are involved in their business at this stage and how do they manage time for it besides the hectic article ship hours, Rohit has to say, 'The time management is not as tough as you guys think but yeah it has made our clocks go the daily schedule of 16 hours and talking about the function, the core designing and print task is upon me and Yash and Tanmay together get the merchandise ready for print at the print house and thanks to the today's rapid growing e commerce, we don’t bother much about the dispatch. We simply post them on the web portal and whatever left after our not meeting on the web we sell them to the local vendors. All this we do is after the office period and weekends and holidays.'

Chartered Accountant turned Food-tech entrepreneur, Sanjay D. Lalwani shares his journey to this milestone of his life. 'Starting with own venture was more of joy &self satisfaction. Being in a Indian society, food is something which I could see connects relations/people and we are happy that we have this opportunity to serve varieties of food delicacies at your doorstep.' Mr.Lalwani and his team have also got a website registered www.foodwalas.comAt Foodwalas, they claim and are indeed explorers of food. On their journey, they’re seeking out the legendary local famous food, amazing artisans and great gourmet food sellers that produce amazing regional products. Their vision is an online marketplace that connects curious eaters with India’s best gourmet food sellers. Their goal is to ensure that every famous foodstuff across India is made available online for sale. So that every foodie can enjoy it, right at his place, with just a click. When asked was it really tough for him to switch the role from an auditor to an entrepreneur, Lalwani delightfully answered, 'It was much easier indeed since I being from a management fraternity. Chartered Accountancy has taught me a lot from time management to finding potential market and risk dealing.'

Now having read these start-up samples, let us analyse the possibilities hidden there in and challenges that we may come upon. When talking about the possibilities, no doubt there are few but millions. Every person who is a chartered accountant and who are pursuing must have in them atleast one per cent of business person hidden in them.

We are already so much into this word business. From our curriculum texts books to real life client dealing we don’t miss of single bit of it. We are there witnessing live how business traits are made, who is setting the example, which brand is leading the market, who got the court order stay making default in any activity. Much beyond the audits and taxation, CAs are well defined as business guru; person guiding an entity in carrying out whole set of activities from conversion of resources into product. Simply talking CAs are the trade and company drivers.

We are so well fed by our curriculum the renowned strategy making techniques that we aptly apply in real life scenarios. Strategy making has never been a challenge nor will it be.  CAs are well paid in drafting strategies to corporates. So here’s my point why just draft those chanakayanitis and give them to others not and not apply in our own?

From visiting the MCA officers cubical to lawyers cabin, we can get all the legal document relating incorporation of a business readily done with just sitting under one roof, meaning, we are well abreast of the procedures launching a business. It can become really an easy cake to make and kick off our business.

Manager, finance person, supervisor and all CAs can be an all-in-one combo ensuing huge saving of cost. If we are to join an entrepreneurial we may be blessed with huge opportunity cost and that’s a key driving factor starting one.

Well now discussing the challenges part, I recall Swami Vivekananda’s saying, 'If you are not facing any challenge, you are on a wrong path. The more the struggle, the bigger the result.'

The biggest obstacle that may come while kicking off an entrepreneurial journey is the proper time management addressal.One can fall short if he/she doesn’t lay out the time management which their plan seek. But no worries as discussed earlier we are a breed of better time managers since our course has aptly taught us.

One professional may not easily risk out their lucrative career and come into starting up something from very zero. Switching from one career to another is always a big deal and the well-established CA who manage potential professional of their clients and make handsome money don’t easily get convinced by the concept of entrepreneurialism and start-up.

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