Tiger Global & Tencent-backed MyGate aims to serve 20,000 gated communities with its security and visitor management app.
Vijay Arisetty, Abhishek Kumar and Shreyans Daga had three main reasons to set up MyGate, a security and community management platform for large apartment complexes.
The first reason was simple. There was serious growth in no. of large apartment communities in India and visitor management by security guards was unorganized.
Two, with the advent of e-commerce and restaurant delivery apps, the no. of strangers who could walk into a gated community was rising at breakneck pace.
Three, the fundamental advantaged of living in a secure gated community were being questioned, with no real security offered in large apartment complexes. “There are almost 80 lakh security guards employed in apartments, commercial spaces and even retail spaces. Yet, even in this “software-ized world”, there was an archaic system to manage visitors,” explains Arisetty. All this put together got the trio to launch MyGate.
Today, MyGate offers two products to this target group. One, a security management product enables verification of all visitors, security-driven in flow and outflow of daily staff and tracking of delivery executives who enter the complex. Its second product is almost like an ERP for community management right from management of communication between committee members and residents to maintenance of all common area functions.
Incorporated in 2016, the company enables more than one million homes on its platform as of Oct 2019. Explaining their speed of growth, Arisetty says, “In June 2017, we added 3 to 4 new gated communities per month, June 2018 this number increased to about 80 new gated communities a month, and in June 2019 we added 800 new gated communities.” The company currently manages over 4000 communities and is present in 9 cities across India including Bengaluru, Pune, Hyderabad, Chennai, Cochin, Ahmedabad and Kolkata. It has validated over 200 million visitors in to these gated communities.
The company has recently raised US $56 million in series B funding. The investment comes from Chinese internet giant Tencent Holdings, US-based JS Capital LLC, Tiger Global Management alongside existing investor, Prime Venture Partners. It has earlier raised US $11.5 million over two rounds of funding.
There is a lot of information exchange happening today with a large number of visitors entering gated communities. MyGate facilitates real time information to the users, whether they are at office, in India or outside India. The company doesn’t have any size parameters and believes that any community is their potential client. It is organising a lot of information with the use of technology to help the communities with various domestic needs.
Everything comes with its own set of challenges. The success and failure of the product depends on the security guard using it. And it makes it more of a challenge as this person keeps changing. This apart, there is still the risk of poor telecom and internet facilities in some regions. “The main gate from which they are operated may not get proper internet signal. We have identified ways to adapt to that,” shares Arisetty.
The team has established a process and system in place to activate training of the new security guard who takes charge. This apart, the devices that are given to the security are heavy duty devices. “We have internal controls to monitor the device performance and the moment something goes wrong, our staff go to the locality to sort it out,” says he. An operationally intensive company, MyGate has a 600 member team that works 24/7 to ensure that the processes are up and running smoothly.
Commenting on its customer acquisition strategy, Arisetty says that it has remained the same from day one. The company has a strong emphasis on customer service. “We deliver great service to all the stakeholders that our brand spreads through word of mouth,” says he.
The company’s revenue model is based on the number of devices required in a building and charges a subscription fee for the gate. “In simple math, it works out to close to Rs. 10 to Rs. 12 per month per flat to use our services. We want to make our services affordable to everyone,” shares.
MyGate has recently launched a silent and secure delivery experience for its users. For this first-of-its-kind feature, MyGate has partnered with multiple e-commerce brands, including Swiggy, Zomato, Dunzo and Grofers.
“From 800 in 2019, the company aims to add 4000 new gated communities per month from here on, ” shares Arisetty.
My biggest focus today is enhance our back-end and get us ready to serve 20,000+ gated communities over the next few months. “The operational setup for this is my fundamental priority,” says Arisetty on a parting note.
In Brief: MyGate
Founding Year: 2016
Investors: Tencent, Tiger Global, Prime Venture Partners.
About the Business: MyGate offers two products to apartment communities. One, a security management product enables verification of all visitors, security-driven in flow and outflow of daily staff and tracking of delivery executives who enter the complex. Its second product is almost like an ERP for community management right from management of communication between committee members and residents to maintenance of all common area functions. The primarily goal is to enable secure visitor management and community management, as more and more strangers start visiting apartments.