Coming from different backgrounds, different interests, and yet they could share their concerns and worries. Shobit and Supriya discussed their fears and confusion since their first meeting. They both were well educated and/or experienced success in their lives, either by excelling at studies or sports. However, they both had this feeling of not knowing where they are heading to, or why.
This feeling is well-felt among their peers. When Supriya first joint the college, she had doubts if becoming a chartered accountant is her dream. She decided to check with her classmates hoping to get some hopeful insights. However, to her surprise, none of them knew why they choose this, or whether it was their passion. The reason was, simply everybody is doing this, or everybody in their surroundings advised them the same.
They both started analyzing the situation, and they ended up with certain facts. The problem is not about how well-educated a person is it is the surrounding environment and the education system. The fact that the education system in India is more like “Dehumanizing people”, drove both Shobit and Supriya to start the idea of Josh talks.
How did The Idea of JOSH Talks start
Supriya and Shobhit did not choose the name or the way spontaneously. As the word JOSH in the Hindi language means “Energy and Enthusiasm” and this what young Indians lack. Therefore, the name matches the purpose of this story-telling platform. As for the way the talks are performed “Story-Telling”, as both of them believe that it is a unique way to share ideas and is more efficient at the same time. Their segment is the young people who are already fed up from lecturing. Therefore, sharing real-life stories will be more appealing, encouraging, motivating and inspiring to the young people, than simply giving advice.
The start of JOSH Talks was very simple. Shobhit and Supriya decided to call for a conference and invited different successful people from different sectors to talk about their stories. Then, they have invited an audience of about 300+ people. This event took place on April 6, 2014, at the Air force Auditorium Delhi.
After this conference, they kept receiving emails from people, asking about their next event, or sharing their own experience and how this conference had changed their course of life.
Witnessing the huge impact their first conference had on people, and how they managed to change a few people’s lives, made them more constant on keep sharing stories to inspire people.
The actual birth of JOSH Talks as a registered company was in the year 2015, where they have their headquarter in Gurgaon city in India. They started as two of them, and right now they have around 80+ people working with Shobhit and Supriya.
JOSH Talks received many rewards and recognitions such as the National Media Award by the president on India in 2019. Also, it was considered among the Top 50startups in India by Economic Times and SturaHR.
Challenges on the Way of Josh Talks
Starting up JOSH talks was not easy, yet achievable. Both, Shobhit and Supriya faced many obstacles, not only financially, but emotionally and acceptance.
Supriya’s parents, especially her father, were not sure if this will ensure a brighter future for their daughter. Although her father did not refuse the idea of having Supriya participating in this type of event, he did not have high hopes.
However, being at the event and seeing the influence Supriya’s conference had, changed his views.
Another challenge they faced was how to convince speakers to come along on board. However, this was eliminated early, as people were constantly in contact with JOSH talks founders to participate or attend their events.
Understanding the needs of each region in India was another challenge. In the beginning, they thought providing the same contents in regional language will have the desired impact. The results showed negative outcomes. Then, Shobhit and Supriya came to know that to reach to all different parts of India, is not only possible by speaking the regional language, but by presenting their local idea, concerns and issues.
One of the main challenges was financing and funding JOSH Talks. Shobhit and Supriya did, and still do various ways to ensure funding their platform.
The most touching way was the fact that Shobhit had to sell his bicycle to assist in JOSH Talks funding. Shobhit was one of the most well-known cyclists in India, and he used to participate in cycling events before moving into Delhi.
Supriya once said that “I had sometimes to wait outside offices for long hours waiting to talk to potential sponsors and funders, and sometimes they never show up”.
By the end of the day, JOSH talks managed to receive funding from famous Indian Angel investors like Girish Mathrubootham who is a founder of Freshworks, Apurva Chamaria who is a global brand director at HCL, Ritesh Malik who is a doctor-turned-investor and cofounder of coworking space provider innov8, and Rohit Chanana who is a head of strategy and finance at Hero Corporation.
Also, JOSH Talks depend on sponsorships and brand partnerships. They had a partnership with Facebook India to launch a #StartAb campaign in order to inspire young individuals in April 2018.
Basically, JOSH talks revenue comes from two different channels, online and offline. The online revenue forms the larger part and it is generated by advertising through YouTube and brand partnerships. Offline revenue depends mainly on sponsors.
JOSH TALKS Revenue and outlook for 2019
In October 2018, BWdisrupt website states that JOSH talks breaks-even and is expected to rise and generate higher revenue in the coming year. The expected profit is Rs 2 Crore.
What makes experts positive about JOSH Talks is the fact that it is on a constant growth and expansion. They have so far 1080+ Talks, 280M+ viewership, and 300+ events, and JOSH Talks founders consider all this just a start!
Also, JOSH Talks proves to all that it can reach all young people by different means, and within a very short time, JOSH Talks was able to brand its name and build a huge audience and excellent reputation. This makes it easier for JOSH Talks to receive recognition and supports.
JOSH Talks’ potential market size in India as a whole. They are expanding their brand by engaging with more partnerships, sponsors, and investors. Also, they have their chance with digital advertisement marketing which will assist them to grow their revenue.