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Name: Akanksha Saxena

Business: BookMySports

Location: New Delhi, India 

Industry: Healthcare, Wellness & Fitness 

Reason for starting? My husband loves to play many sports and badminton is one of them. During the winters of 2012, he would go to a nearby badminton facility every single day (for a week) at 5:30 am but would not get a slot to play. He would come back home irritated and frustrated. One day while we were planning our Christmas holiday vacation and were booking flights, hotels and practically everything online. We thought that in today’s world when everything is online why can’t there be online booking for sports facilities? That was the beginning of BookMySports.

This comprehensive platform has come into existence to bridge the gap between the demand and the supply which exists in the sports ecosystem and to make playing and enjoying sports a matter of 3 clicks. 

How do you define success? Success is not what is celebrated by others. It is the sense of achievement of those milestones which you have set for yourself. Success is what your heart and mind unanimously agree to and celebrate. The day my platform will be able to cater to the requirements of all sports as well as non-sports enthusiasts I will consider myself and my now startup, successful.

Biggest success: I have saved the interest of my company by taking the entire operational and financial control in my hands and by saving it from being sold at a nascent stage. A friend who is a CA was involved in the business to help us sort out financials. But then he attempted to cheat me out of my business and tried to sell my business (platform and the idea), which he could not do. He tried everything from threatening me, to harassing me by imposing unnecessary legal obligations and trying to surround me from all directions in such a way that I would give in to him. But, very successfully I overcame these hurdles and I am running my business.

What is your top challenge and how you have addressed it? Being a women you are always taken for granted and most people want to take you for a ride. Moreover, entering the Sports space which is a highly male-dominated field in India has been my biggest challenge. Coming up with BookMySports, India’s first comprehensive online sports platform, which has come into existence in order to tap into each and every aspect of the sporting ecosystem, has been a difficult journey. This is a highly technology-driven business built in order to minimize the human intervention and bring in accessibility to any activity related to sports in India. Technology is expensive and bringing in finances is still a challenge. To sell anything new requires a lot of persistence. This is a mammoth task, and we are addressing it by covering sports tournaments and matches to display the merits of our products to the end users in order to convenience them about the effectiveness of this platform.

Who is your most important role model? My drive and passion to make this business successful is my role model.

Twitter   @BookMySports

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Edited by The Story Exchange