What is Hike all about?
You have to really talk to someone who lives across the city in another state either for personal reasons or business work. It is urgent and important. Flying there to talk or discuss with them is not feasible due to the sky-scraping fuel prices. Calling them and talking to them is not very budget friendly either, due to the high recharge costs for STD calls. So what do you do? You download the Hike messenger App.
It does not just let you call and talk to people or just does not let you express yourself in mere simple texts, but it is a messenger that does not just offer you messaging. It seems like a fun filled party that is going on in the app. If you are wondering how then you can download the app to see all the colourful themes and fun and frolic filled features the App has to offer. Alongside the normal messaging and calling, there range of the add-on features the app has to offer is nowhere close to anything else in the market in this arena.
How Hike came into existence?
Hike honestly the newest addition to the list of Unicorns and the youngest too. The inception of Hike happed on 12th December 2012. With the advent of the internet and the increased awareness and demand for the need of end to end communications with the utilization of the internet, Hike was launched by Kavin Bharati Mittal.
Hike messenger is a mobile application that works on Android, Ios and Windows operating system mobile phones. It was founded to make communication more feasible and accessible to all. Where in the software just does not provide a communication platform for English speakers but for people communicating in 10 other languages.
About the founder:
Kavin Bharati Mittal, the founder of the 6th largest mobile messaging application in the world- The Hike Messenger app. He is genetically blessed with the entrepreneurial mindset, being born to the famous Indian Billionaire Sunil Mittal who is the founder and owner of Bharti enterprises with the famous Bharti Airtel being one its flagship companies. Mother is Kiara Mittal, Shravin and Eiesha his siblings.
He hails from the city of Delhi having done his undergraduate education in Electronics and Electrical Engineering from the University of York and Masters in Electronics and Electrical Engineering Management from the prestigious Imperial college of London. His hobbies are go-karting and playing cricket. He is also a strong believer of Zen Bhuddhism.
Kavin Bharti Mittal is seen to be making commendable attempts in the Entrepreneurial juncture ever since he has been studying in London. He was Interning with different top-notch companies like Google, McLaren Racing and Goldman Sachs where he is known to have made significant contribution to the companies. For example, he devised a technology where one could see the flags on the steering wheels while he worked at McLaren Racing. He devised a movie app for Apple which was extremely well received and acknowledged. He also devised a food application that gave information about the top food in the menu when in London. After all these he came to India and founded the Hike Messenger App on 12th December 2012.
Valuation and Investment:
Hike Messenger has created an unprecedented history by becoming the youngest organization to get into the list of unicorns within just 3.7 years of Inception. It is currently valued at $1.4 Billion. It is the 6th largest online messaging company in the world which is another feather on its cap.
The first round of investment was received from Bharti Softbank of $21 million and $65 million from investment firm Tiger Global. There are other investors for the company like Ruchi Sanghvi, Matt Mullenweg, Adam D’Angelo, Foxcon and Tencent.
Journey so far:
Kavin Bharati Mittal founded Hike Messenger app in 2012. Initially it just started off as a simple home-grown messaging app company and soon started to diversify rapidly. It initially did not have any downloads on Playstore but the referral feature was introduced and soon there was a bombarding number of downloads.
The diversification involved various features; the first in-demand feature that was released is the messaging without the data feature that was released by the app. There were also a lot done in terms of making the app more user friendly, interesting and colourful, Catering to their target audience that is the students between the age group of 18 to 30. The greatest asset to the booming organisation was the acquisition of the free voice calling company Zip Phone. With which it started its app based calling services which brought a lot of users on board.
The company’s growth can be attributed to the various diversification done by the company. To name a few It posted a sticker challenge where designers were to make innovative stickers for the app which brought in a lot of traffic and downloads for the App. Then there was a timeline feature that was present in the App that let people share thoughts and stories on the App. The most staggering was the Stories feature that was added to where a story can be added and it stays for about 24 hours and disappears. Apart from these interesting features people can play around with colours of and fonts. And the constant addition of new features and diversification has made it possible for Hike Messenger for the 6th largest messaging app downloaded in the whole world.
Obstacles faced and overcome
The first challenge that the company faced was combating the high internet prices in India, data is not as freely available in the other countries. To combat that the company introduced offline messaging and the downloads increased exponentially. There weren’t many downloads of the app so the company introduced referral codes and the downloads soared great heights. But due to more than a million downloads the system crashed had to be fixed again. It was a great loss and a learning lesson. They fixed the issue and brought the system back. To wade off competition from other companies like whatsapp, the company introduced a range of different features. Including News and now also payment App.
Expansion and future plan
After taking over the position of the 6th largest messenger company in the world and the being the youngest company to join the unicorn group, the Hike messenger App is planning to go International with its first expansions in Europe and Latin America.
Impact on the society
Anyone can talk to anyone from across any city with the simple download of this app and it is making life simpler and fun foe millions of people.