This blog is our joint effort ( you can check our profiles at these links – Tonmoy Shingal & Ketan Kapoor). We have been friends since our school days and got together to start Mettl in 2010. It was an awesome journey to start, grow and then eventually sell the company to Mercer in 2018.
Our brief informal intros are below.
I co-founded Mettl.com in 2010– A SaaS startup, in the HR Tech space. We navigated Mettl through the calm waters and the storms in our journey of 8+ years. We were trusted by 2500+ customers in 90+ countries and grew to 350+ employees strong. Late 2018, Mettl found a new home at Mercer. As the COO of Mettl for 8+ years, I worked closely with the Technology, Product Development, Data Science, Artificial Intelligence and Marketing teams at Mettl.
Now I am taking a break from work – catching up on family time, books, health, travel etc. I like to meet people from all walks of life. It is great to know about their unique spaces, experiences and ideas. I love talking to startups and help them in whatever way I can (also as an investor). I am enjoying my current downtime until I embark my next journey again.
Outside work I like to spend time with my wife, my 6 year old son, my parents and sister. They have been my mentors when I am clueless, coaches when I am going wrong, bed rock of my support system when everything seemed be going haywire, entertainers when I am down. I owe it all to them.
I grew up in Lucknow and Kanpur (two of the largest cities in UP, India) in the India of 80’s and 90’s. I have some of the fondest memories of playing gully cricket at the slightest opportunity, waiting for that lipsmacking orange bar from a mobile cart every second day or so and running to that heavenly sweet shop called Chappan Bhog next door (everytime I go to Lucknow, a visit to this shop is a must – they still serve the world’s best chaat !!).
I was very fortunate to study in some of the best schools in these two cities – some of the closest friends (including Tonmoy, my Mettl co-founder) till day are my school friends going back more than 25 years.
Engineering followed as a natural choice; My 20th year coincided with Y2K and that was perhaps the first time I realized that there is a huge global demand for Indian tech talent. As luck would have it, I got placed in a startup (Talisma) from Campus – that exposure and experience was a total eye opener for me and for the first time in my life I realized that you can create very valuable and globally competitive product companies out of India.
Post my MBA (which was more like a 2 year vacation) and small stint in a large company (which made me realize that I am not cut-out for it), I again joined a garage startup (Indepay) intending to do mobile payments. Ofcourse it was before its time, but everything that I know about B2B sales and ecosystems is because of the work that was done at this place. In addition, I met some of the best people here which would later become an integral part of Mettl. While Indepay didn’t work out, I found my calling in another startup that wanted to be the leader of tours and experiences (isango!).
Mettl started just after the financial crisis in 2010; It has been a ride of my life, with infinite learnings, both personally and professionally. This blog is an attempt to summarize some of these learnings into byte sized posts for easy consumption. I am incredibly proud of what we have achieved at Mettl and thankful to Mercer who is now taking our offering to the world.
At present, I am on a break and spend my time mostly with my wife and two young boys and in Singapore.
For any queries, comments or suggestions, feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.