Three years ago on this day we received our company registration certificate and we knew things were going to get serious. The certificate made it official but things had started almost about 2 years ago. I don’t exactly remember the date I decided to do this, so thought might as well keep the official date as the mark of the beginning.
It all began during college days when I was in my 3rd year of Engineering. We all had plans of landing that dream job which comes with a fat pay cheque. Most of us had no idea how we were going to do it and I was no different. A trip back home changed things.
Every time I visit Jammu, I make sure I visit my school and meet those who made me what I am today. During that visit my school was in the process of getting a website done. I had nothing much to do so I thought of giving it a shot. After a few
hours days of frustration (that I knew nothing about this web thing and I should just give up), I somehow managed to pull it off and it turned out quite well. This was when I realized how powerful knowing a programming language could be. I just type some secret verses on my keyboard and things would start appearing on the screen, it was like magic. I got interested and started digging deeper into this new world I had just encountered. It was then that I decided to start my own venture.
I get back to Bangalore, one year of college was still left. This was final year so we had all the time. I kept learning about web development and all related things like domains, hosting, server management etc. – it was fun. I realized its time to hit the road and get some real projects. Few projects came and things started moving. I also launched an online platform that encouraged people to plant trees and it was a hit for first few weeks until people realized that they didn’t have time to plant tress. I learnt a lot from this project but also realized that things don’t always work. When college got over, I had a pretty decent job at Infosys. But instead I decided to give Chanan a shot, for some reason it felt the right thing to do even though I had recently seen a project not go so well.
What really helped at this point was the enormous and unconditional support I received from my parents that gave me the courage to take on this venture. My dad envisioned the name Chanan as the symbol of love among our family and I was more than happy when I decided that it would be the company name. My mom made sure I don’t lose my focus & kept encouraging me with occasional visits & out of the world kashmiri food. I also kept bothering them for some “pocket money” from time to time.
One day, I got a call from my mentor, Dr. Vikram Gulati, principal for the same school I studied in and did a website for. Vikram sir has been an inspiration to me since I was a kid. I did all my schooling under his guidance and there was not a single time when you meet him and not learn something new. His guidance was really helpful. He had called to check how things are going, give in a few tips about how to grow further. It was all really helpful but it turned amazingly helpful when he mentioned, “hey, also I have transferred some funds in your account, use them wisely”. Now this was a shocker & trust me the funds were enough for me to sustain a good number of months & bring in some required equipment & resources into the company. I resisted taking the funds but he insisted and we came to an agreement that I should consider this as an interest free loan and who was I kidding, those funds were a blessing at that time.
Things moved real slow for the first year, there were not many clients, no sales & marketing strategy and not much work to showcase as a portfolio. However, that didn’t stop anything, we kept progressing in the right direction. Chanan was also nominated in “Economic Times Leaders of Tomorrow Awards 2010”. More work started coming in and it was time to grow as a team. To begin with, Chitresh, my elder brother, brought in his experience and put the company in a more organized state. Every company needs someone who ensures that things don’t start drifting in the wrong direction, Chitresh ensures that for Chanan. One of my dearest friends, Satwik, made sure that he dropped by every other weekend & see how things are going at the company. You can’t grow if you don’t take a few risks, Satwik was always encouraging and has been the reason of motivation behind a lot of heavy decisions Chanan has taken so far and we are glad those decisions were taken. Sadly, he is not with us today but I am sure he would be really happy to see how things turned out.
Agnish, a great friend of mine and a design ninja, soon joined Chanan as Creative Head & started managing design projects. I have bothered him a lot from time to time regarding the logo for our company and he has been kind enough to welcome all my “dude, lets change our logo, bring in something fresh” needs. He has designed our current and all previous logos.
Company was now in a more organised state, however we needed some more developers who could take on the growing flow of projects. Satwik introduced me to one of his good friends, Arshaan. We decided to bring him in starting with an interview – at least I tried to make it look like one, however it turned into a conversation about how the current state of education & employment is in India. Arshaan has since then been a dedicated Chanan developer & I have seen him grow his skill set enormously. He currently manages a team of developers at Chanan and actively codes for all major development projects we take on.
We all have a simple plan, keep up with the technology, deliver quality & give awesome support. This plan seems to be working great so far.
As of today, Chanan is one of the leading web development companies in India. We have a good number of clients in India and quite a few overseas and we are really thankful to all of them in helping us grow. The company has come a long way over the last two years & I must say the journey has been nothing less than an adventure. In the last two years –
- Chanan became one of the first few companies to bring in cloud based hosting solutions in India. We have partnered with all leading data centers across the globe and are now capable of powering hosting servers in about 20 locations worldwide. Our clients have not seen a downtime in the last two years
- We have developed web solutions for partners and clients that have helped them grow their businesses
- We have worked on multiple web based products like freeZbe, Lendyx, Holiday Mine, Seva Today
- Ensuring that we keep up with the new technologies, we gained expertise in responsive web development & catered the same to lot of projects. We just released our own responsive website, you can check it here (try it on a phone or a tablet), some sections are still incomplete, but that wouldn’t stop me from talking about it on its anniversary.
- We love open source & make sure that we contribute in any way possible. We released a responsive web development tool kit called “Tiny Dev” & open sourced it for others to benefit from the same.
- Chanan has gained a good expertise in mobile application development and we have worked on quite a few apps already.
- Chanan works with technologies like HTML, PHP, Java, Android, iOS, NodeJs, BackboneJs, MongoDB, jQuery Mobile, eCommerce platforms and the list only gets long.
- Apart from specific web & mobile development, we are trying to present a complete package in terms of businesses needs like taking care of hosting applications, search engine optimization, online advertising etc.
Some recent work can be found here, here & here.
All this could not have come into being without the never ending support from my friends, family and of course the whole Chanan team. Few other people I would like to mention – Sandeep (for being on the same wave length & listening to my “future” plans), Mithun(for doing reality checks on my behalf & sponsoring few LED monitors), Abhishek(for tolerating me as his roommate for 4 years of college and encouraging me in bad times), Suraj & Chandan(for being the guys I always looked up to & for raising the bar), Nivedita(for being my biggest critic & tolerating the times she had to listen to my ideas), Sneha(for getting Chanan its first client). I might have missed calling out some names here, because trust me almost everyone I know has been a part of Chanan in one way or the other, I would like to thank them all.
In conclusion, I think the company is on the right track but the journey has just started and we need to go a long way. Right now we have no plans of introducing any new services but just focus on the on going ones and keep on improving the quality of what we deliver. I will try keeping this blog updated with our progress.