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Best Deals on Homestay and Beach Resorts in India

Mar 17, 2016
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In the beautiful contours of entrepreneurship, Yogendra Vasupal, founder of Stayzilla remains one of the most influential and timelessly bewitching Indian entrepreneurs. He might be described as the Dark Horse of Indian entrepreneur fraternity. His extraordinary entrepreneurial potency springs from his boundless capacity for creating Stayzilla communities and introducing the framework of alternative stay segment. This write-up is a treasure trove of illustrious insights shared by Yogendra Vasupal, fondly called as Yogi. We at Startup Whale bring to your knowledge our free-wheeling conversation with Yogi.

Tell us about your venture?

Stayzilla aims to provide unprecedented reach to travelers by providing stays across the entire length and breadth of the country, including all sorts of options from ultra-low budget rooms to luxury stays. (Note: I took these two sentences from Stayzilla website as I know little about it.)

Tell us about yourself

I am Yogendra Vasupal and I am the CEO of Stayzilla. At an early age of 19 years, I dropped out of engineering and undertook various freelancing projects. I used to develop various web-based applications and e-commerce portals. My passion for making a mark for myself prompted me to launch an e-commerce portal of my own. Thanks to my vision and eye for detail, I soon launched an online portal for hotel accommodations anywhere in India.

How do you plan to dominate your niche? Could you please run some numbers for the readers of StartupWhale?

Let me first mention a few stats that capture the simplest yet the deepest truths of entrepreneurship. Stayzilla has more than 30000 options spread across more than 4500 towns. In addition, my firm has already opened as many as 7500 rooms across a majority of Indian cities all in just 40 days. In the next three years, I am planning to take this figure to half a million.

To make this a possibility and continue to remain a vital player in my niche, I have introduced the concept of ‘communities.’ Different homestay owners can thus network and be a part of Stayzilla community. It all now boils down to the location and resourcefulness. Stayzilla mentors will head the communities and in case there are any conflicts between any guests, community heads will take care of it. This ensures smooth and seamless business.

Homestay owners who wish to be an integral part of Stayzilla should pay Rs5000.

Sounds quite interesting. But why should any homestay owner opt for your service?

There is a host of advantages associated with our Stayzilla community initiative. Should there be any thefts and other losses, we provide insurance. I am trying my best to transform the unstructured market into a structured one by bringing all homestay owners under one umbrella. Whenever individuals travel from one state to another, they often do not experience hotel-like vibes. Leave apart hotel-like experience, they do not even get home-like experience. To empower all the homestays with hotel-like services and subsequently   psychologically warm up the guests, what all we charge is a bare minimum of Rs 5000.

Who exactly are your target audiences and how are you targeting them?

Well, all the travellers- both foreigners and natives residing within India are my target audiences. Currently, we are channelizing both our efforts and revenue on digital advertising. In the last three years, we had spent over Rs 3crore to draw the attention of our intended audiences. We have over 35,000 properties spread across the nook and corner of India. That accounts for nearly 800,000 rooms all over India.

What is your revenue model?

This is no business secret. Homestays account for 50 percent of our revenue. Each property in the structured category of the three stars has 35 rooms and is charged at Rs 2,700. Similarly, each property in the unstructured category accounts for 27 rooms per property and is charged at Rs800. Differential pricing has been the key for the revenue generation.

What is your Unique Selling Proposition?

Let me keep this straight. Our Unique Selling Proposition is cheap and affordable, home-like and hotel-like homestays. 

What advice can you give to the future entrepreneurs who want to launch a business eventually?

Be it any business, bottlenecks will be aplenty. You have to be the messiah of victory and emerge victorious in your endeavors. Never back down.

Yogendra Vasupal has the right blend of audacity and intellectual capacity to comprehend the nefarious designs of unstructured stay segment. And as this thought-provoking episode of innovation, inspiration and vision ends, we sincerely hope that this write-up must have found an echo in all our readers’ hearts. Cheers!

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