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Bootstrapping an Artificial Intelligence Startup with Services: Nitesh Chawla, Founder, Aunalytics (Part 6)

Posted on Saturday, Dec 4th 2021

Sramana Mitra: That’s still a horizontal issue though. Connectors are still horizontal plumbing. There are a finite set of data warehouse that you need to connect to. As long as you have those, you are good. Where is the vertical logic coming from?

Nitesh Chawla: Then we got through mapping workshops. We sit down with the business person and go through the process of understanding the business question, looking at the data, and doing some validation. We conduct workshops. We have deep domain knowledge of the banking sector now. I was always convinced it’s a collaboration. It’s an immersion process. Then we bring in that vertical knowledge into our technology layer.

Sramana Mitra: So you have a professional services organization doing that?

Nitesh Chawla: Yes, we do it ourselves. We have a team for client success management that works with our implementation team. Once we have done that, we have a data model which says, “This is the data that they’d be interested.” As a result of that, we have understood that business. As we go through multiple iterations, our data model becomes representative of a lot of things. Then we’re a plug-and-play model.

Sramana Mitra: That is the bootstrapping product company with services story. As you get to know the domain, the models start to scale.

Nitesh Chawla: That’s what we are doing for Daybreak. Daybreak is a bootstrapped services database model. It’s powered by Aunsight which is a cloud-native data platform. It has connectors and horizontal layers. Because our implementation team is using Aunsight, we have figured out what works and what doesn’t work.

What I imagine in the future is if anyone in the world wants to build their own Daybreak, you can use Aunsight to connect to the data. You bring us your own domain knowledge. Then you use our process flows which guides you to build a Daybreak. That entire process then gets automated. If there are any breaks in data quality, it alerts you.

Sramana Mitra: You started with average deal size of tens of thousands. It sounds like that has gone up.

Nitesh Chawla: We are at hundreds of thousands in some deals.

Sramana Mitra: Where is the team?

Nitesh Chawla: In South Bend, Indiana. We have a smaller team in Michigan and Ohio from mergers and acquisitions. Aunalytics is providing significant cloud computing and data platform.

Sramana Mitra: What are the numbers in terms of teams?

Nitesh Chawla: Our total team size is 300 and about 200 in South Bend.

Sramana Mitra: What I also like about your story is we don’t hear a lot of stories from South Bend, Indiana. This is how a geography comes up. We saw this when Omniture happened in Utah. It was a major success. One of its kind. Montana came up because of RightNow. This is a wonderful part of your story. How much money have you raised in total?

Nitesh Chawla: The raises have been largely been managed by Graham Allen. The raise that we are doing right now is about $30 million to $40 million.

Sramana Mitra: How about a range?

Nitesh Chawla: I believe $10 million and $20 million.

Sramana Mitra: What are the metrics of the metrics of the business are you comfortable disclosing now?

Nitesh Chawla: We have more then doubled our revenue. The number of customers is about a thousand. We are going after an organic revenue growth to hit more than 50% on an annual basis.

Sramana Mitra: What is your role in the company now?

Nitesh Chawla: I’m an advisor at the innovation arm.

Sramana Mitra: When you started, you were the founder CEO?

Nitesh Chawla: I was. Then I took a sabbatical two years ago. That’s when we launched Daybreak.

Sramana Mitra: Great story. Thank you for your time.

This segment is part 6 in the series : Bootstrapping an Artificial Intelligence Startup with Services: Nitesh Chawla, Founder, Aunalytics
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