1. Congratulations on your new role in housing.com and all the very best from 9 AM Stories team. Firstly, how excited you are to join housing team and how the future is looking like?
Thank you. Yes, the journey seems to be very exciting indeed.The team is young, bright and zealous spelling out marvellous insights on every development in the industry. It is a pleasure working with this enthusiastic bunch of people and the exchange of ideas enables immense knowledge sharing amongst everybody in the team.
I am all geared up to explore multiple avenues for Housing.com to drive its vision of being the most innovative and trusted real estate platform and look forward to contribute to the company’s commendable efforts to keep the momentum on.
2. Tell us something about your responsibilities at housing.com. You bring a lot of experience and diverse expertise from Amazon & Google; what do you find the most challenging and exciting thing about your job role in housing.com?
I have been tasked with applyingmy competencies to strengthen the product and engineering aspects of Housing’s business. I will also work towards ascending the brand to achieve the objective of becoming a full-service transaction player.
Real estate is a highly unorganized market and hence poses umpteen challenges like lack of transparency, low trust, no historical records / data, no MLS and lack of reliable information on market / transaction prices. Housing.com has successfully mined several opportunities out of these challenges and we believe in continuing doing so. Challenges are a way of life and helps keep us thriving, functional and vigorous enabling us tounlock doors to innumerable opportunities untapped.
Tell our readers something about your journey so far. According to you, what are most special expertise and knowledge you bring on board that are going to strengthen housing.com product innovation strategy?
I started my career as an early member of Texas-based start-up Ashley Laurent (later acquired by Cisco) and was promoted to be Deputy Director/India Country Head within three months. Two years after that I moved to Motorola Mobility, a division of Google todrive the product in several developed and emerging markets through conceptualization, definition, testing, optimization, certification and successful phases. Post this, I moved to Amazon as a Bandwidth Product / Business Head for the cloud division.
My responsibility at Reliance Jio, being a part of Chairman’s leadership team was to build the company’s Digital Media business and the core leadership team. Prior to joining Housing.com, I was the CEO at CA Media Digital (owned by The Chernin Group and private equity firm KKR) and focused on growing the company’s digital service portfolio and various consumer facing businesses in New Media.
It is important to bridge the gap between technology and business and this is something I would really want to focus on. Through the several years of experience I have gained, I have realised that while innovating with technology is important, it is also crucial to simplify and make it customer friendly for the benefit of end users.
4. How do you see the competition and what are your immediate plans on housing.com management vision to be leader in transaction services?
We obsess over our customers rather than looking at competition. Wepay attention to our competitors but it’s not where we spend our energy; it’s not where we get our motivation from. We really like to start from customers and work backwards. Over the years, I have realized that if you obsess over the customers, it will truly cover a lot of other errors / mistakes.
5. What are your plans on product innovation at housing.com? Anything exciting that your team is working on to launch soon, can you share with us?
We have always strived to be ahead of the curve and keep innovating for our customers. This is a fact corroborated by the various innovations we have launched like Maps, Data Science Labs, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Chat Box, Virtual Reality, etc. We are also partnering with Google and Facebook on various technological and product integration and innovation.
It is in our DNA to think exponential and for that we are open to taking calculated risks. We challenge ourselves by setting bold goals to achieve factors of 10Ximpact. We constantly run experiments, collect data, are not afraid of failure, learn from our mistakes and keep iterating till we succeed.
6. How is it like working with Mr. Jason Kothari and the Board at Housing.com?
Jason’s dexterity coupled with his commitment and focused approach to work has helped steer Housing.com to achieve great heights. It is a laudable fact that he has been able to formulate and direct the company’s strategic plans commendably in such a short span of time. We are in talks about various things to be launched soon for our customers and I look forward to many such discussions and successful implementations in the near future.