How MyGate’s Vijay Arisetty built a category-creating startup in its space

An alumnus of the Indian School of Business, Vijay Arisetty served in the Indian Air Force for 10 years. He has been awarded the Shaurya Chakra award for his role in evacuating victims of the 2004 tsunami in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. 

Before becoming an entrepreneur, he also served as a vice president at Goldman Sachs for four years. 

His first startup Purple Road was a logistics company that used to aggregate vehicles and give them for rent to ecommerce companies. After a three-month run, the startup pivoted to security management. MyGate began its journey in 2016 to address a gap in the security systems of most gated communities. 

Vijay, along with his co-founders Abhishek Kumar and Shreyans Daga, realised that on average, at least two to three people visit their homes in a day. And it can be a challenge for one single security manager to check and allow the right people. This led to the birth of MyGate in October 2016.

“We have onboarded 25,000 gated communities. And we have built the operational scale and capability, and muscle to onboard 1 million and these 25,000 gated communities host close to 4 million homes. And the journey of the last five years in building this product and scaling this product has given us some deep insights in terms of how do you keep this product running 24 by seven,” Vijay stated in a conversation with Siddhartha Ahluwalia, Founder and host of 100X Entrepreneur podcast.

Challenges during 0 to 1 journey

Explaining his journey in MyGate and the challenges, Vijay states,

“I think in zero to one stage, to get the product out, to get the right co-founders working with them, building and attracting the first set of talent, building the product and taking it to the market is one challenge.”

Next, startup founders have to worry about a product-market fit and conduct initial tests, Vijay says. 

“And then once you get to this state, attracting capital is the next set of problem statements. And then once you attract the capital, scale the business from one to 10 again, all these are like different chapters of the book,” he adds. 

Each leg of the startup journey brings in unique challenges and learnings, according to the founder.

As for advice to budding entrepreneurs, Vijay says that it is important to choose the right co-founder. 

“So it becomes even more important whether, if you’re like, on a scale of zero to 10, if you’re putting five efforts to select your life partner, here, you have to put on a scale of zero to 10, almost 10 efforts to select your co-founder and the initial team members. It’s very, very, very, very important. Like it just cannot be undermined. Any wrong step you take during this phase will actually get you back by almost three to four months,” he says. 

To know more, listen to the podcast here:

01:51 – Intro

03:11 – Family background and joining the Armed Forces

06:55 – Vijay Arisetty’s first startup Purple Road in the delivery space

08:19 – Aha moment that led to starting MyGate

11:53 – Final scale with his logistics startup and initial scale at MyGate before first funding

14:48 – Challenges during the first funding round being a category creator

21:25 – Zoho Sponsored: Prashant Ganti on where founders struggle with payroll and how can they fix it?

23:13 – Current and operationally capable scale of MyGate

24:56 – Evolution of monetary channels

29:48 – Challenges during their 0 to 1 journey and then in 1 to 10 journey

37:36 – Existential crisis prior to first round of funding

42:13 – Journey from Series A to Series B and beyond

44:55 – How were the two years of COVID-19 for MyGate?

49:02 – Similarities between being in the Armed Forces and being an entrepreneur

54:08 – An untapped market by MyGate

Edited by Affirunisa Kankudti