Lucknow: Ankush was born and brought up in Lucknow. His (late) father was an engineer with the Uttar Pradesh Rashtriya Nirman Nigam. He finished his schooling at St. Francis College, Lucknow, and completed hospitality management from MJP Rohilkhand, Bareilly, in 2001.
With 20+ years of experience in capital marketing and international real estate, his last job was with Century-21 Real Estate, a US-based company, as International Sales Head.
Recalls Ankush, “I had a fair idea of service industry and knew the know-how of it. So, I decided to explore it, eventually leading me to begin my first start-up Placio – India’s first organised student housing and co-living company.” He took a profitable exit from the company prior Covid.
In late 2020, Ankush and Neelesh Kapoor, founded HashTagBazaar – India’s first-of-its-kind socially-impacting group-buying e-retail platform. Here, the sales are generated by resident women of tier-2 and below cities on work from home basis. And while most of them come from less socio-economic backgrounds, this eventually make them ‘Atmanirbhar’.
Currently, operating in Lucknow, Prayagraj and Dehradun, the company soon plans to expand in other cities of India viz. Gorakhpur, Chennai, Bhubaneswar, etc. Very soon, HashtagBazaar will be launched in US, Singapore and Malaysia. Currently, HashtagBazaar is working with employee base of 32 (direct & indirect employment). Continuous, honest market feedbacks and learnings has helped the company to grow in a big way.
The Startup known as HashTagBazaar was founded in 2020. HashTagBazaar is India’s first of its kind socially-impacting Group-buying e-retail platform; where the sales is generated by resident women of tier-2 and below cities on work from home’ basis who largely come from less socio-economic backgrounds; eventually making them ‘Atma-Nirbhar.
In the current online and offline retail system the micro-retailers are unable to secure better margins from the wholesaler & manufacturers as they buy in ‘smaller quantities’, eventually loosing on profits. As a solution HashTagBazaar’s ‘Group Buying’ methodology & algorithms help aggregate multi micro-orders into a single mega-order which helps secure ‘higher margins’ for our retailer community, resulting in better profitability.
Currently, operating in Lucknow and planning to expand in other cities of India viz. Prayagrai, Gorakhpur, Chennai, Bhubaneswar, etc. as well as in USA. Currently, startup is working with employee base of 32 (direct & indirect employment). The startup is also supporting women empowerment initiatives in the form of “#b ereft”, connect & communicate with retailers and get orders for the startup.
Awards and Recognition
1.Awarded Fastest Growing/ startup by Ekana& The Lucknow Tribune 2021
2.Awarded ‘Gaurav Samman’ by Gyan and The Lucknow Tribune. Presented by Asim Arun, Minister of State (Independent Charge).
3.HashtagBazaar awarded first and the most promising startup among 52 shortlisted startups in an event called ‘Khoj’, powered by VCats and VisionStartUPs
4.Awarded Top 5 startups during UP State Conclave under ‘Mission to USA’ initiative by STPI (Software Technology Parks of India)
5.Raised institutional funds from Unicorns, Rapid Bloom Ventures, NexzGen Technology Fund-1 (NGIS Fund of STPUSTPINEXT managed by Fund Manager, Pontaq)
6.Memento of Honour and a jury member to judge aspiring startups at Shri Ram Swaroop Memorial University, Lucknow
1.Speaker at ‘StartUp Master Class’ for the faculty and few selected students of ‘Lucknow University MBA – LUMBA’
2.Speaker at ‘Masterclass on Developing Startups’ at School of Management Studies (SMS), Lucknow, on the occasion of National Entrepreneurship Day
- Speaker at U.P. Investor Summit ‘Invest UP’
- Month on month (mom) growth of 50%, 10K+ orders served with average order value INR 10,000-and have helped buyers save more than INR 1 crore + on margins.
- Current company valuation is USA million next round open at US I0million valuation
- Awarded Fastest Growing/ startup by Ekana & The Lucknow Tribune 2021
- Awarded “Gaurav Samman’ by Gyan and The Lucknow Tribune
- Awarded Top 5 startups’ during UP State Conclave under “Mission to USA initiative by STPI
- Raised institutional funds from Unicorns, Rapid Bloom Ventures, NexzGen Technology Fund-1 (NGIS Fund of STPUSTPINEXT managed by Fund Manager, Pontaq)