Nitin Vyakaranam, an ISB alumnus, who also holds an electrical engineering degree from Northern Illinois has over 13 years working experience across banking, PE and three startups. He is also the founding trustee at the ISB Endowment Fund. Being in the financial space for long, when Nitin started up ArthaYantra in 2006, being in the financial space was the obvious choice. ArthaYantra has a product Tax Mantra that is useful in for tax filing. After being in the market for a couple of years Tax Mantra now has a revamped avatar – Arthos.
Early in November 2012, Artha Yantra also announced their investment that they received from WFA Global which was used to develop the product. Arthos is a web based personal finance application that provides an end to end advice for the individuals. Based on the proprietary personal financial life cycle management (PFLM™) concept of ArthaYantra, Arthos enables its users to plan, execute and manage their finances all in one place.
“There are many services which help you with your finances what we’re trying to do is to provide a tool that tells you how to do it. In many cases, the user still has to choose from the suggestions.” says Nitin. With four patents to their name, ArthaYantra’s plan-execute-manage(PEM) methodology has been developed after a lot deliberation and testing.
There are two plans – Arthos Beta which is free to use and the Arthos Pro which is a paid version with additional features like human assistance. The Pro version is available at INR 7,500 per annum. Arthos Beta was launched only in November 2012 and has 350+ beta customers.
We took a shot at using the product and it looks comprehensive. After taking detailed inputs about your financial status, Arthos manages to plan your finances well.
The sign in process could be less tedious though — three compulsory secret questions, are a tad too much. But as a financial tool, the fact that they’re taking the utmost care to keep the account safe is noteworthy. “The tool is for anyone looking to invest and can get in at any time. If they’ve already made financial decisions, Arthos can help rectify them and get things in place,” informs Nitin. Besides Nitin, the core team is based in Hyderabad. Their total team size is of 26 and they intend to expand into six cities this year.
If you look at competition, players like Scripbox, MilkOrWater, InvestoPresto, MoneyIvy helps one sort out the finances in just one specific area while Arthos intends to take a more holistic approach. Talking about opportunity, Nitin believed the 73 million households in India and growing internet penetration offer ample scope for growth.