#263 - Nayan Ratandhayara, CEO Shipyaari - on succeeding in bootstrapping a SaaS business

A story about building a SaaS business that lasts by blending technology, empathy and novice thinking

This podcast interview focuses on product innovation that has the power to help logistic providers make their shipments cost-friendly and effective. My guest is Nayan Ratandhayara, co-founder and CEO of Shipyaari.

Nayan is a Chartered Accountant by Qualification and an entrepreneur from heart.

Early in his career, he grew from Account Executive to Finance Director. The idea of doing his own start-up came out of a logistical problem they faced in the business.

It led him to co-found Shipyaari In 2013.

However, that was not enough to support a single bread-earning member, so he kept his corporate job and later moved to his next corporate job at WPP.

Shipyaari has been a hustling start-up for close to 7 years but came into a sustainable and scaling phase in the pandemic, which appeared to be a blessing in disguise. The growth he saw during this period forced the entrepreneur in Nayan to go full-time on this and leave his high-paying job.

Their vision is to create a world that’s enabled by better-controlled operations that can deliver products with commitment and guarantee.

Their mission: To transform the last-mile delivery experience of the end consumers.

And this inspired me, and hence I invited Nayan to my podcast. We explore how Nayan has been able to build a successful logistics tech business without any logistical experience. He shares how he’s been able to scale his business from 20 to 100 FTE in under 2.5 years and what first principle thinking enabled them to spark growth while the world got into lockdown. Last but not least, he shares advice on what mentality to develop to stay resilient and build a business that has staying power without desperately chasing funding.

Here’s one of his quotes

COVID was unfortunate for many, but it was fortunate for us. We got a blessing in disguise. During that period. Initially, when India went into lockdown, everybody was curious about what is happening, what needs to be done, what did not need to be done, and all the chaos around the regulations and everything was happening. 

So we took time for two or three months to evolve our system, evolve our technology, and evolve our process. That helped us in scaling up the business because when the machinery is running, you never got time to think about it.

During this interview, you will learn four things:

  1. How to go about approaching the problem you solve in a way that creates defensible differentiation
  2. How to prepare yourself to succeed in expanding your business internationally
  3. Why being a novice in a particular domain can be a big advantage to creating a successful business
  4. What human skills are required to build remarkable traction

For more information about the guest from this week:

 

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