If I was to say that an IT company could be started as a result of floods in the city of Mumbai, then you would probably laugh and say “what an idiot I am”.
But you will be surprised to know that there is a company out there which was formed because of exactly the same reason. Yes it’s true and its name is Rasilant Technologies
Rasilant technologies is a technology solution and consulting company. It has its headquarters in Mumbai, India. It was founded in 2005 by Shailasdity Mukhopadhyaya and Sahil Anand and specialises in Radio Frequency Identifications solutions and system identification services.
Shiladitya excelled at what he did and he quickly started taking freelance projects for external colleges and companies as well. “It was additional pocket money at that time,” says Shiladitya. One thing led to another, and he started dabbling into different technologies and taking up rudimentary projects, things like building applications on ASP.NET.
Then came the break. In 2005, Texas Instruments was looking for someone to take up an RFID (radio frequency identification) project for which they didn’t have the competency and Shiladitya happened to be at the right place at the right time. This was his entry into RFID and successfully delivering the project, he realized the opportunity that existed in the space.
The 2005 Mumbai floods are remembered for the destruction it caused but also for the resilience of Mumbaikars. The city was caught in a shock by nature's fury but the city as a whole got together and worked things back into place.
And this resilient spirit is deeply ingrained in Shiladitya as well. He was at a friend's place when the incessant rains began. This friend happens to be Sahil Anand, Shiladitya’s batchmate and now co-founder of Rasilant technologies.
Shiladitya couldn’t go back home that night and the havoc that was being created outside got the duo in an introspective mode. They conversed about the strong urge to not fall for the 'corporate trap'. Everyone has these talks at one point in time but the duo acted upon it. Things were hazy till then but that might put things into perspective. A company took birth.
Sahil is a very resourceful guy and liked what Shiladitya had thought about RFID. Raising some money from their families, the duo started up Rasilant technologies- a Global Automation Solutions and System Integration Services company.
Rasilant is a B2B company that has undertaken more than 35 major projects to date including Bajaj Auto, Reliance (multiple companies), and IL&FS. “We help companies automate their internal processes,” says Shiladitya. The market was almost non-existent when they started up in 2005 but has picked up since then and now Rasilant is a formidable name in the industry. A 42 member team, Rasilant has an annual revenue of approximately $8 million dollars.
Shiladitya loved what he did at Rasilant but had a desire to dabble into consumer products as well. “I was seeing a lot of gaps around me and I wanted to take a shot at building some kick-ass products”, says Shiladitya. Time had moved to 2011 by now and the app craze had set in.
Shiladitya happened to meet Aneesh Bhasin by chance on Twitter. And Aneesh turned out to be his neighbor in Andheri. Aneesh was a photographer and had never been in a corporate job. A connoisseur of wine, Aneesh had this idea of building an app around it.
And as fate would have it, Shiladitya wanted to understand the process of making a high-quality app. And this is how the Indian Wine List came into existence, a mobile app that has been making waves in wine circles. With IWL, initially, it was mainly about high-quality content but the duo have realized that there’s much more potential and they’ll be shaping it up as a holistic platform for wine lovers.
Along with another co-founder Priyo Patra, who also has a similar story in running his own family business, they started a company called Infisync Labs in 2011 and since then have built Pointshelf. It is a platform for small-to-medium-sized businesses to launch a mobile-only loyalty program, which in its current form gives customers a web dashboard and consumers use the Android or (coming this month) iPhone app to collect loyalty points at all partner outlets.
“I'm a big fan of technology like Square and of course NFC coming from my Rasilant roots and what I hope we can do with Pointshelf is evolving it into the mobile payments app that everyone is vying to become,” says Shiladitya. It’s a tough market to crack but they have set themselves some milestones and will be firing on all cylinders to make it happen.
All these ventures make one think if Shiladitya manufactures time but well, entrepreneurs just do what they do, so all 24 hours are theirs. “I work on the products on weekends and after office hours at Rasilant,” says Shiladitya. Shiladitya takes huge inspiration from the marvelous Elon Musk and just chases his dreams, not worrying much about consequences.
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