Independent skill-tech platform for automotive mechanics, Mechaniks TV, is in the process of raising funds to the tune of around USD 1-million for expansion of its offering and technology enhancement, its co-founder Rajeev Radhakrishnan has said.
Launched in April 2020 by T7E Aftermarket Connect Pvt Ltd, the startup provides video-based technical training in Hindi for servicing, majorly two-wheelers.
The platform claims that as many as 50,000 mechanics pan-India have already downloaded its mobile application, which is at present in Hindi and English.
Two regional languages Marathi and Bengali have also been added in the channel, albeit at a small scale and the startup plans to expand it to several other regional languages over the next 12 months.
"We will need growth capital for our expansion plans. We are looking to raise about USD 1-million funds, and have already started the process. Since the platform is skill-tech-based, we are looking for specific funds, Radhakrishnan told PTI.
He said that the platform is getting a good response from angel investors and Venture Capital funds, adding, Mechanik TV is discussion with potential investors, though at a very early stage.
We are expecting the process to be completed in the next 4-5 months, he added.
MechaniK TV recently entered into a strategic partnership with the Automotive Skills Development Council (ASDC) to launch the country's first purely online advanced BS-VI two-wheeler training in Hindi, which is expected to go live on November 1.
We definitely feel the biggest opportunity is there in two wheelers. The next big opportunity we see is in commercial vehicles, he said, adding that the platform wants to stay focused on adding value to the mechanics, but at the same time make it sustainable as well.
With the right partnerships with OEMs, the platform may be able to offer these services to commercial vehicles as well as tractors too, he said.
"Our intent is to get about 3.5 lakh mechanics on the platform in the next two years, and most of them are expected to be the ones servicing two wheelers," Radhakrishnan said.
"We are exploring three opportunities-- certification, e-commerce for workshop utilities and tools; and access to experts on demand to make the platform a sustainable one," he said.
The startup claims, through its carefully curated technical content, it has already enabled hundreds of two-wheeler mechanics across the country to be able to service BS-VI bikes without any formal training.
"We have to rapidly expand language coverage. We need to do justice to the market. We have to have these services offering in at least seven languages in the next 8-12 months.
"Apart from Hindi, we need to have four south Indian languages-- Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam. We have already started in a small way in Marathi and Bengali but we need to scale it up," Radhakrishnan said.
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