The COVID 19 had a disastrous impact on the economy. It felt as if the economy went into shatter after going through the deadly lockdown. The lockdown was imposed keeping in mind the safety of the citizens and was a need of that time, but the economy couldn’t handle the negative effects of it. There were no customers to avail of any service or buy a product, the operations of the businesses were closed. For many of them, the time was so unfortunate that they had to shut down their offices and businesses. With no funds to carry on, closing the business seemed the best option available.
But now, slowly the economy is waking up from the “hibernation” in which it went during the lockdown. The businesses have started their operations and the customers are now less hesitant to step out of their homes. Many of the startups were started during the lockdown phase but were in the baby stage of ideation, they too have now started receiving funding. The future is uncertain, there is a lot of news that the third of COVID 19 is not far away, so the businesses and startups are transforming themselves in such a way that they are able to function if any uncertainty or unfortunate incident happens again.
New news of the funding has come now. The startup Protonn, has received a funding of USD 9 million as announced on July 16, 2021. The round of funding is undisclosed and was led by Matrix Partners of India. The other participants of the round were O21 Capital, Tanglin Venture Partners, and various angel investors like the co-founder of Flipkart, Binny Bansal, CEO of Flipkart, Kalyan Krishnamurthy, ex-member of Whatsapp, Neeraj Arora, co-founder of Udaan, Surjeet Kumar, and founder of Cred, Kunal Shah.
The funds raised by the startup will be used to increasing the team members by hiring more people, launching theproduct to the market, and for the product development. This news of the funding has come at a time when the startup has introduced its products to its first users in the US, after rigorous months of product development and beta testing.
The startup, Protonn was founded in November 2020 by Anil Goteti, and Mausam Bhatt. Both the founders have a past record of scaling large technology companies. Anil Goteti was at many leadership positions in Flipkart and Mausam Bhatt has a professional history of being the head of product management for Google Commerce(Buy on Google), chief product officer of RetailMenot, and has held leadership positions at Flipkart.
Protonn provides a complete platform for the professionals who are working independently to manage and handle their small businesses online using video marketing, payments, scheduling, and CRM. In other words, it is a digital solution provider for freelancers. Using this platform, independent business people can expand their businesses by creating and uploading powerful and impactful videos of their businesses which then can be shared by potential leads and prospects.
Using Protonn, a business can be launched in less than five minutes. The features provided by the startup are as follows-
1. Video Marketing- Using the magic mode provided, various documents like Pdf, Powerpoints can be combined and attached in a video, which can be uploaded to various social media for the clients to see.
2. Video CRM- With this feature, a personalized video message can be sent to potential clients so that they are engaged with the business.
3. Hassle-Free Scheduling- Clients using this feature can book a slot with the business professional with just a click of a button.
4. Single Dashboard Business Management- Using this feature, all the financials and the analytics of the company can be displayed in one place.
5. Billing and Payments- This feature allows easy and secure payment options for clients
6. Live sessions- This feature provides live, interactive video sessions that have visual capabilities without the need for external software.
Founded in 2006, Matrix Partners India is an investment firm that manages USD 1 billion under its management. The investment firm manages and invests funds in those enterprises(when at seed, early growth stage) which target the Indian customers. Many of the Indian companies have received funding from Matrix Partners India- Ola, Dailyhunt, DealShare, CountryDelight, DealShare, Cloudnine Hospitals, SuperOps.ai, MoEngage, Five Star Business Finance, OfBusiness, and many others. It has its offices in Delhi, Mumbai, and Bangalore.
The co-founder of Protonn, Mausam Bhatt made a statement saying that existing video technology in the professional space has not been updated with the changes made by applications like TikTok and Snapchat. He further added that the startup is bringing that change by giving a platform to professional people a way to manage and expand their business using videos.
The Managing Director of Matrix India, Vikram Vaidyanathan, said that the approach of Protonn which is video-first and mobile-first with a superior experience of the customer will change how business can be grown and customers can be engaged. He further said that this is the need for today and the startup is working on it. He remarked that the founders are introducing some unique set of capabilities and Matrix India feels lucky to be a partner with them.
The startup has something new on its plate. We hope that it is able to inspire many new upcoming startups to bring a change.
Edited by Tanish Sachdev