By Anusha Ashwin
When digital technology can reshape every discipline, every industry, every sector, why not many centuries-old astrological practices. Today, the trend among millennials is to dig deeper into their roots to unearth and digitize traditional Indian practices. Evidentially, Chandan Tiwari observed the need for technology intervention in astrology during his academics and more so because of his father being an Astrologer with 25 years of experience, proved the need. Taking the onus from his father, to further the family’s astrology practice, but with a digital touch, Chandan Tiwari founded Vedic Rishi.
Mumbai-based entrepreneur, Chandan Tiwari, an Electronics & Telecom Engineer by education was raised in a family of astrologers and was influenced, inspired and mentored by his parents in the field of astrology. He combines both Vedic and western astrology and believes that astrology is 75% science and 25% art as one needs to interpret the readings on the basis of their current situation.
A predictive start
“My father Pandit Rishiraj Tiwari is an astrologer, and vastu consultant, practicing for more than 25 years. While working with him, we encountered technology constraints in providing astrology solutions to people. I found most of the related software in the market to be monoliths with huge pricing. On completing my engineering, I worked on multiple technologies and observed that technology and astrology combined together has huge market potential. Since, there are no SaaS service providers in astrology domain, I grabbed the opportunity and started Vedic Rishi on my own,” explains Chandan Tiwari, sharing how he came about getting started with Vedic Rishi.
Tiwari, while working on different technologies after his academics, realized that API is future of technology. Building a website was an ongoing process during Tiwari’s engineering days. He was certain that the idea of making Astrological Algorithms and predictions served as APIs should make astrology domains more dynamic and easily accessible. “Initially I started working on my idea, and soon after I realized the need for a developer, so I hired Ajeet Kanojia. Funds were managed by my family, friends and myself, as I was working on Vedic Rishi idea as a part time effort. I shared the office space with my father,” notes Tiwari.
Incepted in 2015, Vedic Rishi has an Application Programming Interface (API) for astrology services called AstrologyAPI. It helps to get horoscope, prediction, matchmaking and other astrological calculations and report making to a business’ app or website. Thus, ranging from Lifestyle to News segments every business that wants astrology to get seamlessly integrated, personalized and scaled up on their app and website, knock on Vedic Rishi’s door.
Apart from the API, Vedic Rishi also has a direct customer connect where the company’s android app has witnessed more than 3.2 lakh downloads with a 4.3 rating. Vedic Rishi also has a website for customers to log in and undertake astrological calculations, matchmaking reports, generating horoscope and numerology reports.
Matchmaking API and Artificial Intelligence with astrology
Tiwari says that Vedic Rishi is a pioneer in providing API solutions to the Astrology domain. Tiwari, first began offering solutions to address the then market needs by providing general solutions. Opportunities paved way to further create value-added solutions and services that combined his knowledge in astrology and computing technology. Initially, those value additions lead Tiwari to profit in terms of gaining new partners and their trust.
“Today, Vedic Rishi has grown to provide Astrological-API solutions to SaaS business which includes Vedic Astrology, Match Making, PDF, Numerology, Panchang and Western Astrology at overview level. Each section has relevant APIs which makes the count of more than 180 APIs. All the mentioned APIs are available in 8 different languages,” asserts Tiwari.
Vedic Rishi has grown to cater to various segments for different target audience/partners. Along with Astrological websites and apps, the company has partnered with news and media, matrimony, lifestyle and entertainment channels, jeweler’s segment, and dating apps. Gradually, with growth Vedic Rishi has partnered with Hindustan times, HelpChat, Daily Hunt, Doppels, BigMatrimony and many others.
“Doppels (a premium birthday sharing app in NYC), Maaheshwari Matrimonial and Hindustan Times were one of our early adopters for astrology API services. Our partners have witnessed an increase in subscribers and web traffic with Vedic Rishi’s API integration. Also, with unique personalized content, accurate algorithms our partners are able to connect with their customers,” boasts Tiwari on the company’s USP.
Stars in alignment
Vedic Rishi’s bright future is already predicted! The Astro App and the APIs are carving a niche in the less forayed space of astrology-technology combination. From being a two-member team, Vedic Rishi is now a team of 12, with diversified areas of expertise like development, content writing, sales, and astrologers. As the requirement from western countries seems to increase for customized astrology-based algorithms, Tiwari is certain on adding additional human resources in the coming days.
Technology upgradation is also certain with its API. “We have started taking help of Cognitive APIs and Deep learning to train our data models and analyze them in the astrological charts. With self-learning technologies in near future for astrology domain; predictions will become more accurate, genuine and fast. Building SIRI like features for astrology domain shall make it more popular,” foretells Tiwari.
The company is en-route experiencing growth in terms of features and revenues from its B2C app and websites. Vedic Rishi’s current turnover is Rs 36 lakhs and the projection is to tap Rs 9 crore in two years time. Though bootstrapped now, Tiwari has not overlooked the idea of bringing external investors to the company to further the business.