All India Bakchod is More Than Just a Comedy Group; It's Pure Entrepreneurial Genius
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When I met first met Tanmay Bhatt at Mumbai’s St Regius, he was busy sharing All Indian Bakchod’s inception story to a room full of corporate honchos which included people like Vikram Bhalla, Senior Partner and Director, The Boston Consulting Group and Vineet Rai, Founder, Aavishkaar Intellecap Group. For some of us, it was a fan moment while others were simply curious about the comedy company.
AIB inception story is simple – Gursimran Khamba, a Delhi-based comedian, invited Bhat to do podcasts on topics such as current affairs, politics and Indian comedy culture. AIB topped on iTunes' playlist but eventually was banned by iTunes India along with other producers that marked 18+ on their domestic store.
The duo continued to do stand-ups and podcast offline. Around 2013, Rohan Joshi and Ashish Shakya joined the group and the team got into producing sketches for their YouTube Channel.
Since then, AIB has never looked back. Their sketches, like India reacts to ban on pornography, Honest Diwali and Congress vs BJP, have received an overwhelming response because of their relatable content. The team didn’t even shy away from trolling Yash Raj Films, who declined their request to do a parody on the Dhoom series or discussing issues like rape or net neutrality.
With time, the team has evolved from a comedy group to a content production firm. During mid-2015, the company was officially registered while the team took a break from standup. Unlike its competitor The Viral Fever, AIB has no investors on its management board to please which is why they enjoy the freedom to experiment with content.
The Idea Miner
With the content consumption going up, there is always a dearth of good ideas, believes Bhat. “I don’t know why no one in the industry has tried to bring more efficiency to the process of ideation. It's such a nice problem to solve creatively,” Bhat said. He believes that being a businessman is one the most creative jobs out there.
Giving us an example about how he satisfied his creative itches while he was busy setting up his company, Bhatt shares that for sketches like ‘A Women’s Besties’ and 'If Apps Were People’ one needs a lot of insights.
So, the comedian spent about two months watching documentaries and reading books about how ideas come to smart people which led him to create a position called 'insight miner’.
“I wanted to create a format to match every piece of insight which leads to the creating of ‘insight bible’ an easy source of information to create videos,” he added during the sidelines of ASCENT Conclave in Mumbai.
While discussing his entrepreneurial learning, the comedian and entrepreneur said, “The only mantra I have learnt is to just work and help people to learn to do your job, so you can do nothing.
Bhat has spent the last year teaching his writers the skill and whatever he knew about comedy. “So, now they do whatever you see on YouTube and I hardly glance at it,” he added.