Interview: Richa Singh, CEO, - Startup Terminal

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Interview: Richa Singh, CEO,

ST Bureau

This interview is a part of Startup Terminal interview series to mark the occasion of 'International Women's Day'

ST: Please tell us more about yourself.

Richa Singh: I am an alumnus of some of India's leading universities and have worked as an Sr. Business Analyst with Capital One for over 2 years soon after finishing top of my class at IIT Kharagpur where I did my engineering in Aerospace. Post working with Capital One, I went on to pursue my Masters in Business Administration from IIM Ahmedabad.  

Richa Singh,
I have studied in two different parts of India, but there was a consistent pain point of finding a good and affordable parlour. Post that, while working for a big corporate, it was always a run against time to get a hold of the parlour wali. I never really got to go to the parlour at my time of convenience. After realising the magnitude of the pain point, I along with my partners, did some research at ground level, and then conceptualized in 2015.

In my free time, I enjoy swimming, dancing and reading about technology.

ST: Who is your biggest influence in life?

Richa Singh: The person who influences me the most is Sanjeev Bikhchandani, because he is someone I closely relate to, as he comes from a similar background. He is also an alumni of IIM Ahmedabad, and has a similar family background. He too quit his job and built a company, and he's proven himself by being successful. I too want to do the same, I want to build a company that creates 100,000 jobs, creates cash for itself, a company that is profitable and has a positive impact on the society.  He has been successfully able to accomplish what I am starting at and hence he teaches me a lot. However, the challenge for me is that whatever he has achieved in 15 years, I've given myself 5 years for the same goal.

ST: What challenges do you face in your day to day professional life, if any?

Richa Singh: Hiring a good-quality team, rolling-out operations, getting customers to repose faith in us and raising funds are all challenges that any entrepreneur should expect to face. However, the larger society in India is still not as geared to see and accept a young woman lead a company as I would ideally want. Hence, it becomes challenging at times to make people (vendors, prospective employees, ex-employees) believe that yes, the decision I take is in fact the final decision. Some have even gone to the extent of actually declaring, “No, no, you cannot be the owner.”

ST: Where do you want to see yourself in next 5 years down the line?

Richa Singh: I would want to take to a level where it is a creator of 50,000 jobs, since I am of the thought that talented people have a responsibility to create an impact on the society, we are supposed to uplift all the people along with us. That's exactly where I am to see myself after five years.

ST: What is your message to the readers on ‘International Women’s Day’?

Richa Singh: To all the women, I would like to tell you that you are way superior than you think yourself to be. It's time you start estimating yourself right, if you haven't rated yourself yet, start with 1.8x of what you think you are in everything you do viz.  managing house, work, the pay you deserve, the number of correct answers you have, etc. Unless you start understanding it, you won't start behaving like that, and if you don't start behaving like one, no one will value you like that.

To all the men, the society could get so much more from women, if you start valuing them well. About 50 per cent of the society is getting grossly undervalued, and this is taking the human race backwards. Let's stop undervaluing them.

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