Coffee, Tea, Redbull?
This HAS to be a special place. Never heard this before, in any company, as you walk in. Also, it made me feel veeery old. The Redbull offer and the fact that Rakesh greeted me with “oh sir, please come”. And stopped an activity which people usually stop, when they spot people from other generations.
I was curious about this Hackathon which was going on at Innoz. Also the fact that they are a Seedfund Investee, I had to go and show my support. Plus the fact that its walkable from our office was super.
As i enter Deepak’s office, i notice one familiar face and one stranger. Nikhilv, my fellow TEDIndia fellow, who is one of the most creative person you will ever meet was there. Nikhil doesnt need Redbull. Redbull needs Nikhil. He is that kind of guy. We spoke about this awesome product that he is developing to like things in the real world. What if you had a “like” button everywhere in the real world? He is launching the product soon, must check out.
All this time, i was trying to figure out who the other guy was. The other guy turned out to be the fakeipl player, whom obviously i did not know. IPL is not my cup of redbull.
Rakesh gave me a tour of the Office. I think he called the office the “hostel”, a couple of times! It had the buzz of a hostel. I was imagining “Jwalamukhi” hostel in IITD. And you could feel something magical is happening. People all over the place. People watching movies. Press folks taking bytes. Robots moving around. Another fellow TEDIndia Fellow Gaurav Vaz was there on the terrace, showing his support. Young kids walking in the main door asking, “where’s the event da”. Kid on the reception – “Here!”. T-Shirts with 55444 on it. Food. Games. It was pure startup spirit.
So this Hackathon was about random people using 55444 platform to develop cool apps. Rakesh told me that he has developed an app which sends him an SMS when he passes by a beautiful girl to alert him that he is married. Apparently, you can do things like that. True. Someone else developed an app to get prices of electronic items across stores by sending an SMS. Fuel prices over SMS. All kinds of stuff. Over SMS. This is truly revolutionary, and brings the internet to millions, who have simple phones. And get this, they do 25,00,000 sms a day. Yes, you can count those zeros again. 2.5 Million SMS a day. They have partnerships with Airtel, TATA, Vodafone,… all of them. I cant even get a SIM from one of these guys.
Amazing stuff. And i see this amazing stuff coming out again and again from these colleges in Kerala. Great thing for startups. We need more people like Rakesh and Deepak. And I need a Redbull.