Kanchan Sukhija, Co Founder — Compare Munafa
“A lot can happen over coffee” — a tagline of a popular chain of coffee chain shops applies perfectly in the life of Kanchan Sukhija, Co-founder – Compare Munafa, that brings together leading online stores and help buyers select the best deals by comparing product / shop prices online, while offering added advantage of cash back and discount against every purchase. (www.comparemunafa.com). With rising mobile internet & the penetration witnessed today, her platform provices an opportunity to compare prices for a range of products to consumers.
A Masters in Finance & Investments from Nottingham University Business School and PGDIP in Actuarial from the University of Southampton, Kanchan worked for 3 years in finance & insurance where she learnt the nuances of the corporate world. But being from a business family, Kanchan always had a heart of an Entrepreneur. She feels since she has seen both sides of the coin, it helps her strike the right balance at work.
“The idea was to create an online mall and it all started with casual meeting at a coffee shop!” says Kanchan. Her co-founder and friend, Vivek Agarwal were discussing her online purchase of a phone, where they felt a need for a a one-stop solution to make online shopping more simplified and convenient, where one can save time, effort and money as well. “Compare Munafa is the result of my passion and determination. The journey was not easy but it was very exciting indeed, as it threw new challenges in the form of opportunities at us every day”, says Kanchan.
Kanchan has always believed that investment in education is the best investment and everyone has a right to learning. This is one of the reasons of her association with SUIT (Societal Upliftment Initiative Trust) as a treasurer where they work towards educating underprivileged children.
High point in career
“The highest point in my career till date is the day we launched Compare Munafa. It was just a dream until early last year and now I am living the dream. In today’s fast paced lives, Compare Munafa not only helps save time & efforts but also lets earn cashback by bringing price comparison, deals and coupons and Munafa points (similar to cashback) on a single platform. It is developed not to be just another online portal but as a solution provider for the information asymmetry about the price of the products across other online portals. The launch of Compare Munafa and giving shape to the idea has definitely been the career high for me.
Most challenging assignment so far
“Nothing is more challenging than shaping up the dream to take it to next level. Getting the right team, keeping them passionate about work and making the work place inspiring and encouraging to get the best out of everyone is the most challenging. I believe hard work and passion pays off in the end. And I believe if you put 100%, then everything else just falls in place.”
“My greatest inspiration has been my father. He is a successful businessman and at the same time a very humble. He has always encouraged me to follow my dreams and empowered me to take my own decision. I have learnt the basics of business from him and his rich value system have made me the person I am today. He once told me a famous quote — “If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.” He has taught me nothing is impossible and we should never give up in life. He is not only an inspiration but also a mentor and my biggest strength.”
Most important milestone in life
“Nothing gives more happiness than seeing your hard work reaching out to people and being accepted. Every achievement is a milestone. Every first for Compare Munafa, be it the first registration, the first collaboration or the first employee, is etched in my memory and is a constant motivation to achieve more.”
Women are the better halves. What does it mean to you?
“Women are Better Halves. I believe this statement is completely true. Unlike men, we women are good at multi-tasking. Being a woman, we bring patience, focus, persistence and determination with us, which not only help to keep the family together but also help in growing a business. I believe that women can be men’s better half in all the aspects of their life take it business, personal, family or any other.”
Experiences on being a woman entrepreneur
“It’s just a mindset that Women Entrepreneurs are any different than Men. An entrepreneur is the one who puts in everything they can to achieve their goals. Anyone can work and make money but an entrepreneur (man or woman) is the one who works for his/her passion and includes people (Team) to be the part of this journey. To maintain a balance and take the right decision is the tricky part.The experience being an entrepreneur has been a jolly ride. Every business has its highs and lows and there is always learning from every hurdle in your path and happiness in every achievement. The journey takes you through different experiences and emotions; focus, hard work and passion helps you go through each and every step with ease.”
How do you believe in making dreams come true?
“Dreams remain dreams until you start working on it. The day I dreamt about Compare Munafa, I had decided it is not just going to be another dream, I had decided that I will work towards making this dream come to life. It all started with in-depth research and planning of everything right from scratch with immense detailing. The first aim was to get the blue prints right by refining the idea into a sustainable business model. Followed by getting the right co-founders along with the right team was next big step for me. The launch was the day when I told myself, this is just the beginning and sky is the limit. Today when I stand here and look back, I realize that everything lies in detailing and working hard with your heart and soul and having the right Team.”
“When you are trying to develop something new, everyday poses new challenges and learnings associated with it. The biggest challenge we faced was to find right and like-minded people, as we believe that many startups fail not because of the idea, but because of lack of the right team to execute the ideas. Hiring for our startup was not easy as the working environment and challenges faced are conventional. The key traits that we look for are passion, adaptability, eagerness to learn and self-motivated individuals who have the ability to take risks in the path of innovation and also the humility to admit their mistakes and find for solutions.”
Setbacks and Lessons learnt
“Every dream has hurdles but crossing the roadblocks and moving ahead is the key to success. No setbacks can pull one back if one is determined to achieve the goal. My experience of giving birth to Compare Munafa taught me a lot many things, few of them are:
- Have a sustainable plan.
- Turn dreams into action.
- Review progress regularly.
- Be flexible and welcome change.
- Stay motivated always.”