Chartered accountants have, over the years, inspired the same feeling in laypeople that their “karmabhoomi” (the balance sheet & P&L), does. A sense of awe, no doubt, but often, stifled yawns. And, the world watches on as bright eyed and uber-talented young women & men add inches to their waists and dioptres to their spectacle lenses.
However, a new breed of CAs is on the anvil. They are suave, sophisticated, charming and as comfortable on the red carpet as they are in the board room. One of the more remarkable torch bearers of this silent revolution is Hyderabad-based “Project Prefix”. Aman Chindalia, Akhil Katara, Neha Karda and Nishtha Yogesh realized that the rigorous and challenging nature of CA training was made even harder by the archaic pedagogy and transactional relationship between so-called teaching legends and their students. In response, they conceived “Project Prefix” with three key objectives:
- To make CA pedagogy more student friendly
- To improve employability of chartered accountancy graduates and
- To offer counselling to improve student experience during articleship
We hear that the team is making great progress on the first objective. They use classrooms in a fashion design institute (that’s right!) and offer an interesting, interactive mobile app that allows CA students to take quizzes and clear doubts with an experience not dissimilar to the popular QuizUp application. Having successfully shepherded their first batch, the team is ready to take up the challenge of achieving their inspiring objectives head-on. Quizzed about their future plans, co-founder Aman Chindalia said that they’re looking at expanding to 3 cities in the next 5 years with operations in the next city, potentially Bangalore, being established in 12-24 months. The team is also mooting an expansion into related services like training students for the CAT. Exciting times, indeed.
Team Gradstory then decided to pose some questions raised by students whose entrepreneurial aspirations are constricted by the traditional bugbears of loans, families… you get the drift! As someone who runs a promising start up along with full time management studies at IIM Bangalore, Aman is indeed well positioned to address these queries. While he does profess his gratitude for the support lent to him and the other founders by their respective families, he is of the opinion that aspiring entrepreneurs who are clear about the “path to their vision” must take the plunge. He went on to say that he believes entrepreneurship can’t be taught but can certainly be picked up. While one does come across literature that talks about the pitfalls in starting up with family and friends, Aman says that the strong bond he shares with his friends and partners has positively affected the venture. While they do have their fair share of professional disagreements, their personal respect for each other binds them together.
These young CA entrepreneurs sound like a fun lot and Gradstory believes we’ll be hearing a lot more about them in the future. Follow their journey on Facebook and oh, by the way, they have a site that’s definitely worth more than a sight – http://www.projectprefix.com/