Founder Spotlight – Rajat Singhania, Founder and CVO of Hylyt | Startup Pulse Podcast

Rajat Singhania Interview

In this episode, Anshuman Sinha is in conversation with the founder and CEO of SocioRack, Rajat Singhania, who has been a tech leader with 30 years of experience and has done it all, from managing hundreds of dealers in the Gujarat cement industry to leading tech teams that work on everything from transportation services to mobile apps. His latest creation is Hylyt, an app that changes how people handle information on their devices. 

Besides being interested in technology, Rajat Singhania also loves music and traveling. He is a big fan of connecting with people and is involved in many businesses and tech groups. He is also an extremely sought-after speaker and mentor known for inspiring others to think outside the box.  

Anshuman Sinha’s first question is regarding Rajat’s journey with TiE.   

Rajat Singhania explains that he has been a part of TiE for over 12 years. He was a part of TiE Silicon Valley and TiE Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, and Vadodara. He shares that he attended a TiEcon at Silicon Valley with his friend 12 to 13 years back and was highly inspired by what it stands for.  

He shares that TiE believes in helping fellow entrepreneurs who eventually begin their startup journeys. He explains that 12 years ago, TiE was all about helping entrepreneurs when they were looking to start their journey. At the same time, it is an entirely different platform today as it focuses on helping startup founders and equips them to pitch to investors.   

Anshuman Sinha follows this up by asking how Rajat Singhania’s startup journey has been.   

Rajat Singhania shares that it was a fascinating instance that triggered the need for Hylyt. He shares that since he runs other businesses, he was attending a meeting when an informational message popped up on his mobile. Not wanting to be rude, he swiped the pop-up, thinking he would return to it later. However, he needed help to track that message and had lost a lucrative business opportunity.  

This incident triggered his need to find a solution that would help manage information efficiently, ensuring no business opportunities or essential messages were missed. He spoke to many technological individuals within the industry and realized people needed to learn a solution. He took this personally upon himself and began working on a solution.  

However, he also shares that TiE had a significant role in this aspect as he realized while building the product that he could start working on the product as a business endeavor. TiE Silicon Valley listed his company among the top 50 companies, changing his perspective regarding the product he was working on. He realized that since an honorable platform like TiE would list his company among the top 50, it was his responsibility to create this product as a business venture.   

Anshuman Sinha agrees with this and shares that TiE 50 is a competition at Silicon Valley where startups from all around the world apply, and only the top 50 companies are allowed to pitch in front of accredited investors at their annual conference held at Silicon Valley.   

Anshuman Sinha follows this up by asking Rajat Singhania about the definition of his product for a layman who needs to become more adept with technology. He also asks what the product does and how it will benefit its users.   

Rajat Singhania shares that the product has a straightforward mission: to solve the problem of too much information and information overload. He states, “Information is compelling, but it is useful up to a certain measure.  

When there’s an overdose of information, it becomes counterproductive because it becomes a mental strain. Stress causes anxiety and overwhelms us, so we are not able to make the best use of the information, and it is manifesting in a way that is causing us to reduce our attention span.”   

He further shares, “The global average for the human attention span is down to 8.25 seconds as per studies conducted by McKinsey, and this has gone down by 30% in the last 20 years, which is a cause of great concern. It is a significant reason for a lot of people having mental anxiety and stress disorders because they are always overwhelmed trying to stay on top of things.”   

He says this was one reason why this product was necessary. He gives an example stating that every layman has information on email boxes or the SMS or WhatsApp windows. If they’re using a calendar, it is on the cloud and their Facebook. But staying on top of this is a challenge that causes many issues for everybody, including individuals and businesses. Hylyt can solve this problem by letting people stay on top of the information they receive.   

Anshuman Sinha follows this up by asking how the app would filter out all the information an individual receives.   

Rajat Singhania says that on a day-to-day basis, an individual who receives 100 emails would only have the time to read some of them since not all are important. He also shares that the individual might need more time to delete these emails.  

Similarly, on other platforms such as Slack, teams, and WhatsApp, an individual might receive 400 messages across multiple platforms. Not all these messages would be as important, and not all could be deleted. In such an instance, Hylyt would highlight the most important messages.   

He shares that AI cannot choose the most important things and can only filter out 50%. With Hylyt, human effort is reduced by 50%, providing users with powerful tools to organize and interconnect all the information they receive.  

Hylyt works on removing the distraction that is associated with information. They give the user powerful ways to secure the information in a controlled space for the individual to return to. He shares that Hylyt endeavors to provide a single source of truth to its customers and strives to become a go-to place for every piece of information that matters to them.   

He adds that if an individual is concerned about the security or confidentiality of the information, Hylyt will provide them with tools to manage data security effectively.   

Anshuman Sinha’s next question concerns where Rajat Singhania now stands in his journey. He asks whether the product is ready and if people are using it.  

Rajat Singhania shares that they have divided the product journey into two parts. Part one is about making the product that they recently completed. The product is usable, saleable, and ready for the market. He shares that they have done some paid pilot invalidations and are currently starting the journey of customer acquisition in Singapore and the USA markets. 

He says that they are taking initiatives to acquire customers. Simultaneously, they have also begun to work on an AI layer for the product and will be able to offer an AI-powered product by the end of this year or early next year. He says all their existing customers will get a free upgrade to the AI version without additional costs.   

Anshuman Sinha asks who Hylyt’s competitors are in India and the US.  

Rajat Singhania shares that they do not have a significant company doing what they are doing and are not considered competitors. However, he does believe them to be similar to products that are prevalent in the market. He shares that US-based companies like Monday, Notion, and Click Up can be competitors in the market in which he is endeavoring to conduct business.  

He further shares that they have two issued patents in the US, two in India, and one pending in Singapore. He says that his team is bringing value proposition to the table since this product is a little different from all the others prevalent within the market, which was one of the reasons why he applied for a patent initially.   

Anshuman Sinha asks how much time the product took to fruition and when the journey started.   

Rajat Singhania shares that the journey has been long and full of experiences and challenges. He had to go through the COVID lockdown, resulting in a two-year operations halt. It wasn’t easy since they had launched their product in March 2020. Due to the lockdown, every progress they had made had fallen apart.  

After the lockdown was lifted, they resumed operations and have remained bootstrapped. He says that initially, investors were interested in funding his business venture. However, since he was not looking for investors then, he politely declined and moved forward. He further elaborates that his company recently started to fundraise.   

Anshuman Sinha asks if Rajat Singhania saw any other challenges in the last 5 ½ years while building his startup.    

Rajat Singhania shares that along with COVID, which was a big challenge, there were other challenges that he had to overcome in his startup journey. He elaborates that there were technical challenges or limitations where he had to devise a different way to function. He also faced challenges regarding patents and competitors.  

However, one of the biggest challenges that he has been facing is creating awareness about what they are doing because people need what Rajat Singhania is attempting to do with Hylyt. Still, most people have not learned that such a solution is available. He shares that being bootstrapped; they needed more funds to inform everybody that such a solution exists.   

Rajat Singhania says, “We all are not very careful always with what we put on social media channels or share with others. With Hylyt, our product helps you prevent information from going to the people you know to those you don’t know.”   

He says that there are many products in the market that can take care of cyber hacking attacks. However, there are no products that will deal with information leakage. In such an instance, his product will allow customers to safely send information to someone and stop them from forwarding it to others. This can help protect data and eradicate information leakage.  

He further shares that there is a problem regarding information sharing regarding employees leaving a particular company. This is another place where Rajat Singhania’s product will help people to make sure that they have better control of what people are doing with their information so that they can remove or pull back information when employees are leaving the organization and then transfer this to the new person who is filling the job role. This practice will not only help reduce gaps in knowledge but also transfer and reduce the learning curve because attrition is an imminent reality.   

In Conclusion  

As we wrap up, I want to share a belief of mine: what you give to the industry will come back to you. This is why I love helping other entrepreneurs succeed,” Anshuman Sinha said. 

Remember, you are not alone in this startup journey. Join our online Startup meetups and participate in the Startup Pulse Podcast to gain insights into entrepreneurship and ensure your long-term success. 

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