“Nobody is bothered about an institution more than its alumni” said Mr. N. R. Narayana Murthy
College life plays a vital role in an individual’s life. That is the phase when we learn to build relationships, to trust and to let go and prepare ourselves to stand up on our own feet and make friends for life. But, what after graduation? Everyone gets so lost in the hustle-bustle of their new lives that they rarely go back to cherishing those good old memories from college.
To help alumni cherish such times and involve them in institutional development, a lot of universities and schools organize alumni meets. But how successful are they? How many people actually get to know about such meets?
Understanding this challenge, Paresh and Sanjeev decided to come up with a solution that would help schools and universities leverage the power of their alumni networks. This decision resulted in the birth of Vaave – A SaaS platform to build exclusive alumni networks. Vaave helps institutions build and manage an updated alumni database, organize successful reunions & alumni meets, involve alumni in student development, raise funds from alumni and engage alumni effectively.
At Vaave, the team envisions a world in which ALL institutions are effectively leveraging the power of their alumni networks. Their mission is to grow into a global leader in providing alumni networking services and to be able to reconnect even the most rural institutions to their alumni.
Paresh did his schooling in a rural school in Adilabad. Many alumni of his school were in a very good position in their lives. He felt that they can develop the school a lot and provide better infrastructure facilities to the students if all of the alumni members contribute a little each. He did his Masters in Mumbai from one of India’s best institutions where he learnt more from his seniors and guidance from alumni than from sitting in the classroom. After experiencing all this, he felt that we can completely transform the education system if every school/university can be connected back to its alumni. The idea of Vaave was born then.
Paresh and Sanjeev were active members of Bhumi, an NGO in Hyderabad. It was there that they met each other. When Paresh discussed the idea with Sanjeev, he jumped on board. Together they set out to build Vaave.
Paresh and Sanjeev are the co-founders. Later, they were joined by Yasaswy and Jaipal. Yasaswy was Sanjeev’s schoolmate while Jaipal was Paresh’s collegemate.
Paresh is the MD and co-founder, who is a NITIE Alumnus with 11+ years’ experience in building web apps. Sanjeev is a IIIT – H dropout, and is the CEO and co-founder of Vaave. He has 8+ years of experience in Sales & Strategy. Yasaswy, the Sales Head of the startup is a VIT alumnus, has worked with Cognizant and has 8+ years of experience. Jaipal Reddy has worked with ICICI and is the Head of Finance & Operations of Vaave. Srichandana Nagoji is the Chief Happiness Officer. She is an IIT Kharagpur & Teach for India Alumna.
“Alumni have the potential to miraculously transform the institutions they belonged to, especially in the education sector. By leveraging their alumni relationships effectively – Institutions can raise funds from their alumni to solve the existing infrastructure problems; alumni can mentor students and help them make wiser career choices; alumni networks can generate job opportunities and referrals for students and alumni of the institutions; alumni can fund research projects and start-ups by their alma mater and alumni can also help structure future strategies and curriculum of the institutions,” says Paresh.
Vaave’s features include complete database management solution, events module, funds module, mentorship module, jobs & internships module, online merchandize store along with an integrated mobile application. The network can be launched in 7 days and the team provides round the clock support to their customers.
Vaave is the result of an extensive research and hard work put in by the team over the years and suits and caters to all the needs of alumni and institutions.
If you would like to have a look at their demo, you can check it out here. This demo will give you a basic idea of all the important features of Vaave.
Vaave currently serves more than 800 institutions across India. Their happy customers include prestigious institutions like University of Mysore, Indian Institute of Technology (BHU) Varanasi, Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology Nagpur, International Institute of Information Technology Hyderabad, S.P. Jain Institute of Management and Research Mumbai, Sydenham Institute of Management Studies, Research & Entrepreneurship Education Mumbai (SIMSREE), JNTUH College of Engineering Hyderabad, Osmania University College of Engineering Hyderabad, multiple institutions under the Symbiosis Group, M S Ramaiah Institute of Technology Bengaluru etc.
When the duo started off, they bootstrapped the company. The profits they made from services business were invested into building Vaave. Once they gained their first few customers, the team chose to focus on Vaave completely and stopped providing all the other services.
In 2014, they raised an angel investment from Utthishta Yekum Fund. Rest of the investments have majorly been small packets from friends, family and their clients too. The last round of investment was a minor one in August 2016 from friends and family. They are looking forward to raise Pre-Series A in the coming financial year (2017-18).
Current and Future Plans
Vaave has successfully launched its first international network for Global e-Schools and Communities Initiative (GESCI), run by United Nations ICT Task Force in Africa this year. They have also launched their integrated mobile app recently.
Vaave will be launching its first corporate alumni network for Qualcomm India this month and is in negotiations with 5 other corporates to build their alumni networks.
Speaking about the future, they plan to strengthen their presence in the international and corporate market this year. They have a lot of exciting plans in pipeline to enhance the value that Vaave provides to the educational institutions in India. They will also be piloting a couple of additional revenue channels.