Heartonnect is a Mumbai based self-funded start-up Co-founded by Meeth Mehta and Akshay Mahale. They initiated operations 2 months back with the launch of an Android application (app). Their aim is to change the way people find and connect to each other around the world. Heartonnect is a buddy finder or a date finder application that assists users to connect to other users anonymously through VOIP calling. They want to help connect people on the basis of exchange of words and thoughts by talking to each other and not seeing each other’s pictures. At present there is a team of 10 people with a varied educational and professional background. Heatonnect has recently won the FBs tart program that is a great program by Facebook to encourage start-ups with potential.
Idea behind the project
To this Akshay Mahale shared “The idea of anonymity was inspired by the personal experiences and experiences of our friends on various dating applications (apps). We noticed that as the society is going digital, so is the art of connecting to people. Additionally, we also observed that all the dating apps functions on the idea of appearances of the users i.e. via their profile picture. This eventually led to failure in finding an ideal match or a date or a buddy in most of the cases.” This made them come up with the idea of Heartonnect.
The core team
The core team consists of 7 people from a varied educational and professional background.
Akshay Mehta, 25, is the CEO. He is the alumnus of IIM Indore. He is very good with spotting opportunities and capitalizing on it. He is the one who keeps the team organized, focussed and motivated. He has prior experience of working in a start-up and interning with established organizations.
Akshay Mahale, 25, is the CTO and the co-founder of Heartonnect (Alumnus BITS Pilani and Atharva college of Engineering). He is the geek armed with his codes who looks after the technical aspect of the business. He has 3.2 years of experience in technology industry.
Meeth Mehta, 24, is the CMO and the co-founder of the Heartonnect. He handles the marketing and business related aspects of Heartonnect. He is the one bringing in new plans and activities. He is an alumnus of Atharva College of engineering and has 2.5 years of experience in technology industry.
Kushal Kumar Rawal, 28, is the CFO and the Chartered Accountant. He is the wizard who plays magic with numbers and keeps start-up financially viable. He also sorts the legal hassles of the business. He has 3.5 years of post-qualification experience in technology industry.
Yagnesh Joshi, 29, is the COO and Chartered Accountant who is very passionate about lean operations and processes in business. He also proactively engages in branding activities. He has 3.5 years of experience in technology industry.
Laxman Pandey, 25, is the person who looks after social marketing aspects for the team. He has good knowledge of E-marketing and about using various tools for the same.
Nilay Tambat, 25, handles the marketing initiatives in Bangalore. He is an alumnus of K. J. Somaiya College of Engineering.
Other members of the team include Brij Shah (developer), Sayalee Tirodkar and Jay Pithadi
Revenue, traction, and growth
Currently, the services are free and revenues are expected to flow in at a later stage with their paid services and other associations. Heartonnect now has 1700+ download from Google play store and 250-300 active users per day. Team has launched the App since 2 months and the download is totally organic by peer-to-peer referral without any marketing push.
USP and Revenue model
Team’s primary aim is to connect people whether for dating or for socializing on the basis of the interaction with each other rather than looking at the images of profiles that are bombarded and who you do not know as a person.
Akshay thinks that their platform stands out from competitors on the concept level by the means of anonymity. The focus of other apps is on the appearance and that of theirs is the communication skills.
Heartonnect has a very simple UI. The app requires a Facebook login and personal details like gender, age, and language of communication. User’s mobile number is verified with OTP authentication and then the user can start using the app.
After the basic steps are completed the app opens a screen showing a heart icon. Once the user clicks it he/she is instantly connected to an anonymous match via VOIP calling. Once the initial anonymous conversation happens users can opt to connect (or not to connect) each other on Facebook.
One of the major change and added feature in Heartonnect App will be the HT chat. Connecting to other users anonymously via chats, the feature is suggested and demanded by the users. Team also has some ambitious plans for future. This includes increasing their user base rapidly from current numbers to around 1 Lakh by February as they now have more funds and FB start benefits. Read more about Indian Startups.