In this episode of The Ball Of Steel Show, our host Sarthak Varshney get in conversation with Shaurya Agarwal, who talks about his early journey entrepreneurship and diabetes.
Starting to find out how anyone can figure a business opportunity out of anything. Just like Shaurya, he beat his sugar to create Beat My Sugar. A disease liked diabetes also did not stop him from being an entrepreneur, which added to his “Dhandho Ni Soch.”
WHAT IS THE BUSINESS THAT YOU ARE DOING BECAUSE WHICH WERE GOING TO SAY THAT YOU ARE GOT THE BALLS OF STEEL?
The business is called Beat My Sugar, and it is a health care service platform for people with diabetes in particular. This platform would be more like a one-stop-shop for diabetes, where we provide our customers with all the diabetic related products. With that but we provide diabetes-related services on a single platform. Therefore, this being the basic idea and the main aspect, it has led to my journey.
TAKING THIS CONVERSATION FURTHER SHAURYA TELL ME HAVING DIABETES, HOW HAS YOUR JOURNEY BEEN A DIFFERENT ONE?
I am 21, born in Dehradun. I live in Delhi NCR, schooling from APJ School, Noida and further Shri Ram Millenium, Noida. At the age of ten, I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. It is surprising because then I did not even know what diabetes was. No one at that age would. I only had one reference about diabetes that was my grandfather was also diabetic.
I have always seen life as a roller coaster. The experience of having diabetes moulded me in a way I would think of. It made me discover things differently. I found my passion for fitness. Also, how to bring about the idea of giving what I felt back to the community. This was one reason for starting of BEAT MY SUGAR.
In school, I aimed to become a CA. I was managing both college and CA. By my second-year degree, I started losing interest in the idea of CA. I wanted to do something else, either a job or something,
One day I was looking for products related to diabetes. But, unfortunately, I couldn’t find it. As I got an idea about the product in my head, I wrote it in my diary. And slept over it. The next day I talked to my father about it. He was interested in the idea. He connected me over people as he knew related to IT-based companies. And my Chachu invested in the idea as he really liked it
The first was product-based e-commerce. Then in our discussion in board meetings, we thought of providing services as well. Because that is something very essential to diabetes management as a whole. Further coming up with the entire model to go about it. The main idea came from my life journey. As I am a diabetic myself and that is what has fuelled the business too.
DO YOU SEE THE 11 YEARS WITH DIABETES AS A STRUGGLE TO STAND WHERE YOU AS YOU TAKE PROUD OF IT?
Yes, I would say that. I mentioned life had been a roller coaster. It has been no less than a struggle of difficult situations times that I have seen. When I was diagnosed, my friends did not accept me with it. I was alienated. I started losing confidence in myself. They all started to see diabetes, which spreads through touch, and I lost many friends.
I had to change school; luckily seemed to have a principal being supportive—an inspiration to me during my difficult time. Also, when it came to new friends I made there, they were equally supportive. They happened to mould their behaviour to situations and conditions to balance my problems along with their reactions. Slowly, as to how I tend to gain my confidence and is what I am today.
PLEASE TELL OUR LISTENERS SHAURYA IN THIE CONVERSATION THAT HAVING DIABETES HOW DID YOU HAPPEN TO CHOOSE FITNESS AS YOUR PASSION?
Here, I’d say that fitness is the third wheel of diabetes as I heard someone saying that diabetes holds three essential aspects: lifestyle, medicine and exercise. The lifestyle, she told me, was that there was exercise, mental health, family. Your extended family holds the prominent place as it shows how it affects your blood sugar range daily.
I further started to research how fitness can help a person with diabetes. How fitness can control the level of blood sugar, and glycaemic control can be improved.
HOW HAVE YOU COMBINED YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH DIABETES/FITNESS AND ALL THE PRODUCTS AND SERVICES THAT IS NOT AVAILABLE TO PEOPLE, WHICH YOU PROVIDE IN YOUR BUSINESS?
Firstly, I got in fitness when I was on the 12th and with no much experience. My main focus then was in CA, and whatever be the situation now, my main focus wasn’t surely into fitness. But, when I had the idea of what I wanted to do, I started creating my own plans where I put in my hard work and saw YouTube videos where people discuss diabetes and fitness, reading much more about it on Google.
Later, that is how I came with a plan of what could be done and give to customers coming on the site. While now it has been currently in development, and once we have it, we will have it, it will be on the website for others to see.
HAVE YOU STARTED YOUR TRANSACTIONAL PROCESS OF BEAT MY SUGAR?
We haven’t yet started with our transactional process; it would start a little time later, as right now, we are at the testing phase. Basically, we are testing our site developed by the IT person as we are trying to figure out how it would develop at large. When it comes to the transaction part, I am probably hoping and aiming to start by June.
MOVING AHEAD IN THE CONVERSATION, SHAURYA DO YOU HAVE A STORY BEHIND THE NAME BEAT MY SUGAR?
I would not say there is that much of a story behind the name BEAT MY SUGAR, as first of all, I did not come up much with it. I would relate it much to my Chachu as he came up with the idea. He also has diabetes, and he also understands the nooks and corner a person with diabetes goes through; mainly, he has had a long journey.
He understands from people’s perception of how they think and says to one who has diabetes, “arey tumhe toh sugar ki bimari hai, yeh khao who maat khao yeh theek karega and so.” They think of it as a stigma that can cure, but there is no cure now and as I would like to mention this here in the show.
So, that’s how they came up with the idea of the name BEAT MY SUGAR, also for one reason that you cannot be bogged down by diabetes. I believe that sugar can’t control you. You have to control sugar, basically in the route of sugar management.
WHEN WE TALK ABOUT INVESTMENT, WHAT KIND OF BUSINESS WOULD WE TALK ABOUT FOR BEAT MY SUGAR?
I would describe to us like a bootstrap start-up for now, mainly because we have not had any external funding as of now, and we all co-founders have bootstrapped the company as for what it is now.
I would not consider it a family business, but we surely consider all our members and the employees together as a big family. Also, we don’t create any business hierarchy as we tend to work as a big family.
WHY DON’T YOU GIVE US AN INSIGHT ON HOW YOUR DAY TYPICALLY LOOKS LIKE?
I would be ashamed to tell this, but my day starts at around 11.30, 12 and I start with my breakfast, take a bath, have my lunch and finally sit for work. I go through my emails, watch some videos regarding diabetes and different products and those offered in the international market that are not offered in India.
Later, pick up my books, study for my exams, have my internal board meetings regarding the company. Finally, some family time sits together, has conversations on various topics, watches the news, and all has dinner together.
When I get to the room, sit have more research on various ideas and watching various people related to their life around diabetes and looking up more information on google ending up sleeping at 3.30,4.
BEING AT YOUR EARLY AGE, WHAT ARE YOU YOUR MONEY MANAGEMENT PLANS?
Related to the money plan, firstly, I would not be very comfortable sharing the aspect of money management related to the business. But, when it comes to my daily expenses, I don’t have many expenses on day to day basis.
I have minimal expenses. Before COVID, I would go with my friends once or twice a week to talk about our daily lives. So, all in all, I do have much of expenses as such, and that is how my daily money expenses tend to go.
WHAT DOES YOUR ENTERPRENER JOURNEY LOOK LIKE, SOMETHING YOU FEEL YOU LEARNT FROM THIS?
In this journey of an entrepreneur, mainly what I have learnt is time management. It has something in which I have grown with managing time in college and business. It has also helped me manage my time for studies, work, meetings, workouts, and family time in this journey of entrepreneurship. I have had to demark certain parts of the day for certain things.
Like morning for college, afternoon for family and business, and evening for work and fitness and last before sleep is also for a little more work. I have also picked a habit of watching series, which has helped me grow in my journey.
People say that watching on Netflix is not much of good. But, I would say watching series which are educational would be no harm but would only help you grow. For example, I was in the habit of watching Shark Tank- it is one that shows how a venture capitalist thinks. And I would recommend people to watch Shark Tank. And I would love to be there once.
HEADING TOWARDS THE END OF THE CONVERSATION SHAURYA, WHAT ARE SOME TIPS AND ADVICE YOU WOULD LIKE TO GIVE TO OUR LISTENERS?
Firstly I recommend watching Shark Tank to those who want to jump into entrepreneurship. Also, indulge in reading books like I just read one named Rich Dad Poor Dad. All of this tends to give you a lot of money management tricks.
Other than all of this, don’t use YouTube as an entertainment platform but as an educational one. For example, there is a channel called Alux where one can understand how the luxury market works, how billionaires think, and breakthrough ideas catching the world. Also, watch personal development channels like Ranveer Alahbhadia Show and generally be aware of your surroundings.
Finally, when I talk about social media, it can be used positively if used correctly and not in the wrong terms.
This got us to an end of the beautiful journey of Shaurya Aggarwal of BEAT MY SUGAR. This conversation with Shaurya gave us a whole new definition of overcoming one’s limitations. It has very well brought to us how it is essential not to lose hope and confidence in circumstances as Shaurya in this conversation did. Having been diabetes at the age of 10, it was never his weakness.
He always thought of learning more about it and growing his knowledge, and helping the community. Also, he discovered his passion for fitness during this period, worked on it. He grew to become an entrepreneur with all that he learned and shares his experience. To listen to more inspiring conversation like Shaurya, tune into the full podcast on the following platforms. Stay Tuned.