The great hustler: Sharks back a founder but not his startup on Shark Tank India S2
- In search of financial freedom, Ilesh Kumar Sharma developed three income streams - a
salaried job, providing coding servicesfor apps, and running a business selling momos.
- He developed Same Notification, a
monitoring appthat can share the notifications received on one device with another if both devices are paired and permission is provided.
- All the sharks were impressed by Sharma’s attitude, but not by his business idea, which they believed was a gross invasion of privacy and susceptible to misuse.
AdvertisementMany people start their businesses while working a full-time job. But few hustle as hard or as effectively as Ilesh Kumar Sharma, the founder of Same Notification, a parental monitoring app. Sharma appeared on Season 2 of
Sharma joined CarDekho in 2019 as a business manager. He was simultaneously providing coding services to another organisation (not named on the show) and running two momo stalls. However, when he heard about Jain joining Shark Tank India as a judge, he quit his job.
Sharma shared that he earned ₹35,000 per month from his regular job while coding services fetched anywhere between ₹90,000 to ₹1 lakh in a month. He also made a monthly net profit of close to ₹70,000 from the momo stalls. Impressed by his attitude, Anupam Mittal, founder of Shaadi.com, said, “Through people like you, Ilesh, India will learn the value of business.”
In search of financial freedom
Originally hailing from Ahmedabad, Sharma is an automobile engineer who started working professionally in 2013 - but he always wanted to do something of his own. Thus, he set up a roadside stall to sell momos. In 2019, he added another small outlet to sell momos. He claims both outlets are profitable and running on autopilot.
While working at CarDekho, he started developing apps for other people. That’s how he developed Same Notification. When Aman Gupta, co-founder of boAt, asked what satisfied Sharma, he responded “financial freedom gives me happiness.”
“I don’t want to be stuck on one thing. I want freedom from the idea that if that one thing doesn’t work out, my house will stop running. That’s why I keep hustling,” shared Sharma.
Same Notification is a monitoring app that can share the notifications received on one device with another if both devices are paired and permission is provided. These include all notifications, even those of apps like Instagram, WhatsApp, Telegram, etc. You can select the apps for which you want to share notifications.
The app is available on Google Play store. The app offers three options - access to partner’s notifications, option to share your notifications with your partner’s phone, and the option to exchange notifications with each other. Sharma didn’t disclose the technical framework of the app on the show but said the two devices can be paired by sharing a six-digit code, which can be generated once the app is downloaded. He said he earns through in-app purchases and ads but the sales weren’t revealed on the show. At present, the app has over 10,000 downloads.
According to Sharma, the app’s purpose is to allow parents to monitor their children’s online activities and social media consumption so as to save them from harmful activities. However, the sharks expressed concerns over the app being misused.
“Your idea isn’t investable but you are”
The sharks commended Sharma’s journey and attitude but not his business idea because they felt it was a gross invasion of privacy.
“I appreciate the hunger you have but in principle, I don’t like such apps for two reasons - firstly, it’s an invasion of privacy and privacy is very important to me even between a parent and a child. Secondly, this app can easily be misused. For these two reasons, I’m out,” said Namita Thapar, executive director at Emcure Pharmaceuticals
Vineeta Singh, co-founder of Sugar Cosmetics, also backed out, advising Sharma to shut the app altogether. Meanwhile, Mittal commented that Sharma should continue looking for that one thing that could provide him financial security - but the app wasn’t it, and thus backed out.
Jain advised him to transform his approach from developing a “hackish” product like Same Notification to thinking of parents’ actual needs and working on developing a product for that.
Peyush Bansal, co-founder of Lenskart, also backed out but advised Sharma to focus on a business idea that wasn’t as controversial as Same Notification.
“You have all (the) traits of a good entrepreneur. Your idea isn’t investable but you are. When you have a non-controversial idea, I’ll invest in you. But I’m out for now,” said Bansal.
Aman Gupta, co-founder of boAt, followed suit — he too wanted to take a bet on Sharma but didn’t find his business idea worth investing in.
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