Sunita Maheshwari is the Co-Founder of StartupArena.in, one of the largest network of deals for Startups and Small Businesses, which provides comprehensive, end-to-end solutions for Startups and SMBs. She also runs a successful Chartered Accountancy practice in Gurgaon.
Her journey in the professional arena began 20 years ago, when she joined an Export House in Kolkata as an export executive. In about 2 years, as she started making an impression at work place, she got married and had to shift to Delhi NCR along with her husband. She started to rebuild her profile in a fertilizer company in Delhi as an accounts executive. As fate would have it, she had to take another break from her career after 2 years as she was blessed with a son.
As she says “I wanted to give my full-time and attention to my new born son in the tender years of his growth, hence I decided to take a complete break for 5 years.” She also kept updating herself professionally on the latest developments in her field. After 2 broken attempts of career building, along with the desire to spend enough time with her growing kid, she decided to start her own practice as a Chartered Accountant, initially at home, and then at a small office nearby to her home. The initial 3-4 years saw nominal but steady growth, as she kept spending quality time with her son at home even during the day, ensuring she had lunch with him, and helped him in his homework and other school activities. It was only when he started handling his school activities independently at age of around 10 thatshe started to concentrate on building her practice.
Sunita adds “While setting up the practice, we came across numerous problems of growing business in terms of getting quality services at reasonable prices. Also, business was difficult to come by.” This laid the seed for the desire to set up a market place where quality services are available to SMBs at reasonable prices and in turn SMBs get ample business opportunities at reasonable cost. This is how the idea of StartupArena was born.
Sunita has a very clear vision for her Company. Her aim is to make the company a key player in the SMB space, a so called business exchange, where businesses would meet businesses over business. Five years down the line, she wants to see the company as a key player impacting revenue for more than a million SMBs.
The most important trait that one needs to follow blindly is commitment. There cannot be a long term business relationship without commitment. “Our biggest achievement has been the high rate of client retention, which hovers close to 99% in the CA firm and at around 80% in the SMB platform”. She goes on to add “In a service-oriented industry, the most effective marketing technique is word-of-mouth. There is no match for referral-based marketing, where your customers talk well of you.”
“Having involved myself into so many multifarious activities, relaxation is difficult to come by. Whatever little time I get, I try to spend with my family and also catch up on soulful Bollywood music over a cup of tea”.