Farid Ahsan is the co-founder and Chief Operating Officer of ShareChat, an Indian social media platform that allows users to chat in their native language. As COO, he largely looks after business development and revenue generation and is determined to build a vibrant work culture, to reflect the platform’s diversity.
He holds a B.Tech in Metallurgical and Material Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur.
Startup Journey & Career Growth
After his graduation, Farid Ahsan started his career with an internship as an Analyst - Corporate Finance at Deutsche Bank, Mumbai. In 2015, Farid launched ShareChat along with Bhanu Pratap Singh and Ankush Sachdeva. The app lets users create, discover, and share content to communicate in their preferred Indian language. In addition to being a founder and a visionary of sorts, Farid Ahsan is also an expert on 'Bharat users' - what Indians want, and how they think and interact with technology.
2016 - ShareChat enabled UGC (user generated content) creation on its platform, giving users room to share their posters and creative content.
2017 - ShareCHat grew to 1.7 million Google Play shares, 5 million downloads, and a user base that was growing at about 30% month on month.
2018 - It had more than 40 million monthly users.
2019 - It launched three new features, providing a great user experience through its intuitive user interface, and serving more than 35 million users across 14 Indian languages.
2019 - It acquired the Clip app, a digital media video startup that allows users to easily create, watch and download funny Indian videos.
July 2016 - In Seed round funding, ShareChat raised $1.35 million from SAIF Partners with existing investor India Quotient.
November 2016 - In Series A round funding, it raised $4 million from Lightspeed India Partners, Venture Highway and from existing investors, India Quotient and SAIF Partners.
January 2018 - In Series B round funding, it raised $18.2 million from Xiaomi, Shunwei Capital with other existing investors.
September 2018 - In Series C round funding, it raised $99.23 million from Morningside Venture Capital and Jesmond Holdings along with other existing investors.
Awards & Recognition
Farid Ahsan was featured in Forbes's 30 under 30 Asia list in 2018.
Farid Ahsan, Co-founder of ShareChat talks about his early days at IIT, what motivated him to start up, how he and his co-founders came up with the idea for ShareChat, what has helped them scale, and his learnings from the journey so far with Anand Daniel, partner at Accel, in the INSIGHTS series podcast.
You can listen to the episode here - SEED TO SCALE Podcast Series by Accel: INSIGHTS #28 Farid Ahsan of ShareChat on solving problems of a new-age vernacular audience on Apple Podcasts
“Once you start to think about monetising, the DNA of the company changes. Generating revenue is expensive.”
· Farid Ahsan, Co-founder of ShareChat