Zar­get’s SaaSy Move is to As­sist Star­tups

Zar­get launches Re­spec­tS­tar­tups, a plat­form where larger cos can of­fer help to early-stage star­tups

The Economic Times - - Disruption: Startups & Tech - Shadma.Shaikh@ times­group.com

Ben­galuru: Chen­nai-based soft­ware-as-a-ser­vice (SaaS) startup Zar­get has launched Re­spec­tS­tar­tups, a plat­form where star­tups and large com­pa­nies can come to­gether to of­fer bud­ding star­tups as­sis­tance in the form of free tri­als for prod­ucts, ac­cess to ser­vices, and of­fice space, among oth­ers.

The plat­form is aimed at help­ing early-stage star­tups that of­ten strug­gle with funds to buy li­censed soft­ware prod­ucts. “When we started Zar­get, we went through a phase where we re­quired a lot of soft­ware tools to build our prod­uct,” said Arvind Parthiban. “It’s dif­fi­cult to spend too much money on buy­ing li­censed prod­ucts when you are start­ing a boot­strapped com­pany.” Zar­get for­tu­nately bagged an early fund­ing un­der a year of its in­cor­po­ra­tion, mak­ing things eas­ier for them in terms of spend­ing on prod­ucts, Parthiban said. How­ever, to build a solid ecosys­tem there was a need for a com­mu­nity to help star­tups in need.

Backed by large ven­ture cap­i­tal firms, in­clud­ing Se­quoia Cap­i­tal, Ac­cel Part­ners and Ma­trix Part­ners In­dia, within a year of its launch Zar­get took the onus of build­ing this plat­form to give back to the com­mu­nity. Put to­gether by a team of six peo­ple over six months, Zar­get plans to man­age the Repec­tS­tar­tups plat­form un­til it gains mo­men­tum and picks up on its own.

The plat­form will al­low com­pa­nies to list their of­fer­ings to the startup com­mu­nity and will also al­low the early-stage star­tups to post re­quests on it.

While Zar­get doesn’t ex­pect a di­rect busi­ness im­pact through the ini­tia­tive, Parthiban said the idea is to grow its busi­ness by en­abling growth within the com­mu­nity. If star­tups like the prod­uct within the trial pe­riod of six months, they might end up buy­ing them in the long run. “We heard about the Repec­tS­tar­tups com­mu­nity even be­fore its in­cep­tion and availed an at­trac­tive of­fer. It is a

much-needed ini- tia­tive and will rev­o­lu­tionise the startup world,” said Karthi Mari­ap­pan, CEO, Lyceum Tech­nolo­gies. Zar­get has planned an out­reach pro­gramme to en­able more en­trepreneurs and com­pa­nies to sign up on the plat­form that goes live on Thurs­day. The plat­form will also be launched in the US next week.

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