This Start-up is Aiming For A 'Moonshot'
"We signed a partnership with ISRO which made a lot of progress."
TeamIndus is a six-year-old company started with an attempt to launch a spacecraft towards Google Lunar XPRIZE, an international competition wherein the aim is to land a rover on the moon and make it move 500 meters and come back with the evidence. "That is where we started off with engineering as our core focus," shares Rahul Narayan, Fleet Commander, TeamIndus.
The company started off like any other start-up. The whole point was to connect people and then over a period of time it consolidated. The team got full time people on board and moved to Bangalore in 2015. TeamIndus went on and did one round of seed funding and did its first prototype. Talking about the support it received, Narayan says, "I have been very fortunate when it comes to people who came forward to help us along. A big step was when we got a ranking in the competition. We signed a partnership with ISRO which made a lot of progress." Currently TeamIndus has a close to a dozen retired ISRO scientists who are working with them.
Talking about putting together a team towards such a mission and also staying focused on the same, Narayan says, "The biggest strength that we all are bringing to the table is that we truly believe that this can happen. Teams are there to take care of technology, some look after programming, operational part, building and integrating of various facts." Sheelika the other Co-Founder looks after marketing, Dilip Chabria another Co-Founder looks after core engagement and business development. TeamIndus has been working closely with other teams of the competition including a Japanese team, which is relatively a young team and they did put together the rover but didn't have a space craft to launch the vehicle. TeamIndus will help them launch the rover.
(This article was first published in the May issue of Entrepreneur Magazine. To subscribe, click here)