The stars are shining for GaneshaSpeaks

25 Apr,2013

 

By Ananya Saha

 

The brainchild of Hemang Arunbhai Pandit, GaneshaSpeaks.com was launched in Mumbai, India, on April 25, 2003. As it completes a decade, the website has come a long way to operate five call centres in India on a 24×365 basis providing personalized horoscopes guidance in more than 10 languages including English. The website employs more than 500 people including over 400 astrologers.

 

Areas of Operations
:: Online astrology services and mobile portal.

:: Apps on iOS, Android, Windows & Samsung Smart TV’s.

:: Astrology guidance on the phone:: Astrology Books.

:: Content Syndication Services: Astrology.fm -Horoscopes radio station.

:: Specialized forecasts for the stock market - Trends and personalized forecasts in advance.

 

The Journey

Mr Pandit, a keen believer in astrology himself, is a Gold Medallist in Bachelors in Engineering from Gujarat University, India. He has worked as Head – Product Development Group with Vodafone India (then Hutch India) and is an expert in Mobile VAS, GSM, 3G & related technologies. The website – Ganeshaspeaks.com – provides customized content for media entities and provides content to Sony TV, Star TV, Times of India, Lokmat, Samaj, etc. in India. It has also associated with Indian language publications in USA, Australia, Singapore, UK, etc.

 

Talking about the journey, Mr Pandit said, “When we started out, there were hardly any organised branded websites for astrology in India or abroad. Given that astrologers are default psychiatrist in India, we started out with 72-hour order fulfilment guideline. It was a promise that we began with.”  And the promise has worked well for the website. Its specialized forecast for the stock market, which serves 1000+ paid customers, has been generating revenue of $100,000 on a monthly subscription. According to Mr Pandit, GaneshaSpeaks.com provides branded astrology independent of an individual astrologer, more like a trusted platform for astrology guidance. The current unorganized horoscopes market in India estimated at $10 billion/year with close to two million professionals practicing astrology in top 600 cities and towns of India.

 

GaneshaSpeaks.com operates in areas such as online astrology services & mobile Portal; apps on iOS, Android, Windows & Samsung Smart TV’s; astrology guidance on the phone; astrology books and content syndication services. Its Astrology.fm boasts of being the first dedicated horoscopes radio station. GaneshaSpeaks.com apps are live on iOS, Android and Windows Phone platforms and over one million apps have already been downloaded. Nokia India is preburning GaneshaSpeaks.com apps on its phones and Samsung is developing and preburning six apps from GaneshaSpeaks.com on its Smart TV’s worldwide. Talks are also on with globally renowned phone and tablet manufacturers for pre-burning deals. Currently over five million subscribers have subscribed to Ganeshaspeaks’ daily alerts in India on SMS.

 

Online Astrology Services 
:: GaneshaSpeaks.com – India’s #1 and World’s #3 Astrology Portal available in Web and Mobile Versions

:: More than 5 million visits per month (India’s Broadband Penetration is just 8%) with 30% traffic coming from Smartphones and Tablets

:: 55 million page views per month

:: Partners Yahoo India, MSN India, Rediff.com, Indiatimes.com, Sify.com, etc.

:: Astrology guidance on the phone – Live Astrology:: 400+ astrologers provide 24X7 guidance.

:: Premium Rate dial in services on 55181.

:: Does 5 million consultations per month.

:: Zero cost remedies.

:: Tarot, Numerology, Vastu, Feng Shui, etc.

:: Guidance in English and 9 Indian languages.

:: Partners with Vodafone India, Tata DoCoMo, Airtel, Idea, Aircel, etc.

 

Challenges

Even as Ganeshaspeaks.com has provided structure to how astrology is done in India, Mr Pandit said, “Internet in India has grown and changed, but not as much as we had expected. As penetration increases, we are expecting a far bigger influence in India.”

 

The revenues have grown, according to Mr Pandit, and fall in a good range, especially as the website has a pay-per-use business model. He said, “Well, we have typically grown over 100% year-on-year. The operational profits did begin from the second month of existence.” The website delivers SMS alerts, both sunsign-based and personalized in a daily and weekly format in various languages. The Voice IVR Portal is also operational with all astrologers providing zodiac content, sports and stock market forecasts and other interesting content in English and nine Indian languages.

 

But have a safe business model did not mean that the website did not face challenges. “We faced the same challenges as any other entrepreneurial business in the first three years. We were typically hand-to-mouth. We were not a funded business, and still aren’t. While there was accrued income, there were payment delays from telcos. But once this phase of the first three years was over, we stabilised the revenues and started growing.” The growth also came from areas that the website expanded in, such as predicting political flashpoints, forecasting the Nifty Index a week in advance; forecasts that were generated intra-day for each day of the week; personalized daily and hourly ratings indicating good and bad days to trade for customers.

 

The branded astrology website is still not on the same growth path as an online retail or a matrimonial website; but the subscriber base is growing.

 

The way forward

Ganeshaspeaks is working on daily Video alerts in English and Hindi. After launching books on Kindle, and thus becoming the first astrology portal to do so, the website has taken a cautious approach when it comes to promotion and marketing. Mr Pandit elaborated, “There are many fly-by-night operators who advertise on various channels. That is making people lose trust. That is why we have stayed away from that kind of marketing.” To attract the uninitiated, the portal has invested in strong Search Engine Optimisation. “In a scenario where 38 million searches are done online on astrology-related queries, SEO helps. Secondly, we are very active on social media,” explained mR Pandit. The website has grown its subscriber base organically.

 

With the help of its Astrology.fm, the website runs educational programming aimed at creating a more informed audience and clearing popular myths related to astrology. The dedicated horoscope radio station receives 1 million+ unique users every month. It provides six hours of fresh programming in Hindi on a daily basis, according to Mr Pandit.

 

Mr Pandit concluded, “It has been a fantastic and rewarding journey so far where we have established GaneshaSpeaks. We wish to continue the growth rate and become a giant force in astrology globally in the coming years.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Post a Comment 

3 responses to “The stars are shining for GaneshaSpeaks”

  1. I am associated with Ganeshaspeaks since 01-9-2004. I was with their astrological call center in Mumbai & since 2010 with their website. I feel lucky to be with them.

  2. Bhaskar N says:

    Can somebody advise as to when the times will be good for seeking employment in India…? Anybody?

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