“Startup” may be a small word but it signifies a long story of effort, persistence and most importantly passion. We at TBS Planet, believe that every founder is a superhero and every startup has a story that could inspire people all around the planet. And so we are launching this series of interviews to show our support towards the cause. In our first interview here, let’s hear from Mayank on his journey at Matsya -Veda.
1.Tell us something about you and your startup.
About me :
I’m, a computer science engineer by profession who graduated from Georgia Institute of Technology (Atlanta, USA), has been working in the Technology industry for past 12 years, both in US and India. I worked with DELL, and a California based startup called ‘Perspica Inc.’ as a Cloud Computing and Big Data Analytics Engineer. Recently I relocated to India and, given my inclination towards alternative medicine as well as my paternal family’s experience in herbal medicines since 1892, I quit my engineering job to start MatsyaVeda Herbals, an Alternative & Holistic health service.
About MatsyaVeda Herbals :
“MatsyaVeda Herbals” is an alternative and holistic health service, founded under the guidance of Dr. Vijay Prakash (Ayurveda Acharya) and Dr. Shobha (Yoga Acharya). MatsyaVeda has root in Ayurveda since 1982. Under MatsyaVeda, we provide consultation with Ayurvedic Doctors, prepare herbal medicines that are approved by the Ministry of AYUSH (Govt. of India), offer Yoga training classes and Naturopathy treatments, and guide folks about right kind of food as per their body type. We also regularly blog about the role of food and alternative medicine in healing.
2. Give us a brief background about founders and its core team members?
Three individuals passionate about natural healing, which is powered by resources procured directly from the lap of mother nature, stumbled upon this idea of starting something as indispensable as enabling the same magical recovery for people worldwide, and thus MatsyaVeda was born.We are a core team of three co-founders who firmly believe in Ayurveda and are well-versed with its principles, as well as those of related sciences such as Yoga and Naturopathy.
He is a veteran Ayurveda Acharya and has been practising the science for more than 50 years of his life. He specializes in pulse diagnosis and prescribes a suitable treatment accordingly. He has a special knack for identifying rare herbs and has been skillfully preparing herbal medicines for decades.
His brisk understanding of modern scientific methods of practising medicine, and a deep knowledge of parallel cures employing the ancient history of medicine, have led him garner over 15 patents to his name. He has successfully treated several chronic and life-threatening diseases including nervous disorders, brain diseases, spinal injuries, rheumatism, osteo-arthritis, migraine, sexual disorders, cervical spondylitis, respiratory disorders, cancer, diabetes, heart diseases, and many other disorders. His innate skills have had him patients visiting from all over India, and many other countries such as the US, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Peru, Colombia, Honduras, UK, Italy, Croatia, Ukraine, etc.
Dr. Vijay is additionally a distinct scholar of Yoga & Naturopathy and has a profound knowledge of the Vedas, Upanishads and various other revered ancient texts. This enriches him with a broad perspective towards the science of ancient medicine. Apart from medicine, he is an expert in meditation and a master of Jyoti-shastra (Astrology) and Vastu-shastra (science of architecture). Having aced miscellaneous fields, he has worked with UNESCO on a multitude of projects and has extensively travelled to the US and Canada for the same.It is this vast experience and intense research of Dr. Vijay, that forms the backbone of Matsyaveda Herbals.
Dr. Shobha is a Yoga Acharya with over 30 years of practice in Yoga.
She studied Yoga in 1980 from Vishwayatan Yoga Ashram, under the learned guidance of Swami Dhirendra Bhramachari.Swamiji had been a trusted mentor in Yoga for various scholarly individuals and bureaucrats such as the third Prime Minister of India, Smt. Indira Gandhi
She has additionally studied Naturopathy, under the learned guidance of Dr. Vital Das Modi. She is proficient in healing body pain with the use of acupressure and other natural therapeutic procedures. She has always been naturally inclined towards alternative medicine as her father had been a renowned Homeopathy specialist.
Mayank is a proud alumnus of Georgia Institute of Technology, USA. He is equipped with over 15 years of experience in the software industry. The attachment that he today shares with MatsyaVeda, has got a backstory to it, which is a snippet straight out of his own life.
Unfortunately, Mayank suffered a severe spine injury in 2004. After having reached out to various proficient doctors in modern medicine, spanning from India to the USA, his hopes remained dim. All the doctors had advised him to go for surgery, equally warning him of the several precautions he would have to be careful about, throughout life, even post-surgery. Amidst this period of gloom, he came across Ayurveda Acharya Dr. Vijay Prakash and that proved to be a turning point in his life. The Ayurvedic treatment of Acharya ji completely recovered him from his illness and the brief association that he shared with Matsya Herbals during that time, blossomed into a close bond for life.
3.What was your motivation behind venturing into this?
My connection with Yoga and Ayurveda began in 2004 when I sustained a spine injury, where the L4-L5 disc in my spine slipped from its position. This led to lower back pain and triggered sciatica pain in the right leg. I couldn’t walk or sit for a long duration and was on bed rest for three months. I got an X-Ray & MRI and consulted numerous orthopaedic surgeons both in India and U.S. Each one proposed spine surgery given the dislocation of the disc. They also mentioned I would need to maintain life-long precautions, such as no heavy lifting, bending forward, etc. At the age of 21, it was disturbing to realize the future of my lifestyle would be restricted.
As a result, I looked for alternative medicine and practices such as Homeopathy and Ayurveda for treatment of slip-disc. Ms. Shobha, who introduced me to Dr. Vijay Prakash, a veteran ayurveda doctor specializing in pulse reading (“nadi-shastra”) to diagnose ailments. With Dr Vijay’s treatment, I started feeling better, and within a month, I was back to my normal lifestyle. I even avoided spine surgery, which was a big relief! That was the beginning of my curiosity and inclination towards healing powers of Yoga and Ayurveda.
4. Who do you see as competition and how is your startup different?
Our competition our big herbal brands such as Himalaya, Baidhaynath, Charak, etc and also other players such as Amili, Kudos, Dhanvantari, Sandu, etc.We have more than 100-year-old formulations that we are repacking to appeal in today’s era.
5. What are the revenues and margins like in your industry?
Margins vary from 10-20% and also depends on the volume of the business. Margins are higher in case of exports.
6. What are your future plans?
At Matsyaveda, we unabashedly believe that Ayurveda brings us closer to Nature and the closer we are to Nature, the better life we can lead. We, thus, offer a holistic approach to healing and well-being of the mind, body and soul, the natural way.
In near future, we plan to officially launch more herbal supplements and wellness products made from natural ingredients and meticulous ancient processes. Some of the planned herbal products are :
– Medicine for Alzheimers
– Medicine for Parkinsons
– Medicine for Cancer
– Medicine for Heart Diseases
7. Any advice you want to give budding entrepreneurs.
Passion and Perseverance are powerful. Angela Lee Duckworth explains it beautifully in this video.