Ganesh Balakrishnan, co-founder of Flatheads Shoes, appeared on the fifth episode of season two of ‘Shark Tank India’ to raise funds for his startup.
Investors in the reality TV show noticed that Balakrishnan’s startup was struggling. The company’s funds dried up, co-founder Turk Balakrishnan moved on behind, and the venture capitalists pointed out that the 4Ps of marketing (product, price, place, and promotion) were misplaced.
A veteran businessman with over 20 years of experience’s financing move takes an unexpected turn when a shark reminds him of his responsibilities to his family and 10-year-old daughter.
The IIT-IIM graduate broke down on national television.
Despite what happened on the show, Balakrishnan took to LinkedIn to reveal that his 10-year-old daughter wants to be an entrepreneur.
At 10 years old, Balakrishnan Jr. had already begun her entrepreneurial journey. She was busy creating a 2023 calendar with her paintings and was taking pre-orders for the same. The post reads: “She is an artist and is taking pre-orders for her 2023 calendar created with her paintings.”
The proud dad went on to say that his daughter was a fan of Lenskart founder Piyush Bansal’s mindset. He also said that she admires the cheerfulness and positivity of SUGAR Cosmetics founder Vineeta Singh. In his letter, he wrote, “She is very proud that I was able to get an offer from both of them.”
Balakrishnan said that while he was afraid to air the episode, he was inundated with people’s messages praising entrepreneurship.
“Crashing on national television isn’t exactly great for one’s self-confidence. What I definitely didn’t expect was that the episode would be received the way it was, and it’s very heartening to see people applauding the entrepreneurial spirit — to all the startup founders, with me as an agent,” Balakrishnan wrote.
He also thanked the Sharks for helping him get some perspective. “Many thanks to Sharks Anupam Mittal, Aman Gupta, Vinita Singh, Piyush Bansal and Namita Thapar for helping me get some perspective. And to Sony and Shark Tank India for giving them a chance to talk about entrepreneurship really like it.”
“Most of all, a million thanks to everyone out there for all the support and love. It takes some effort to process all of this, so please give me some time. I will respond to everyone as quickly as I can,” he shared.
Balakrishnan also said that stocks of Flatheads sneakers in India had almost run out after the show. We have almost sold out our stock in India, so excuse us if you can’t find your size on www.flatheads.in. It would be great if you could tell your friends in the US and UAE to try our shoes.
People Group founder Anupam Mittal took to the professional networking platform to wish Balakrishnan luck and that the entire country was rooting for him.
Balakrishnan replied to Mittal.
In his warm post, the founder of Shaadi.com said that Balakrishnan taught everyone the power of openness, honesty and acceptance. “I often say that ‘entrepreneurship is not a straight line’ and when you look back, the biggest failures are the most rewarding because ‘success builds ego and failure builds character.’ I know that because I was there… not once but twice… I made it big and then lose it all… onwards and upwards,” he said.
Balakrishnan thanked Mittal for featuring him in the show. “It was genuine and came from the heart, and I was so touched by your gesture. When things don’t go your way, you tend to lose self-confidence, and I was in a vulnerable state at the time. Your spontaneous offer gave me confidence that I could come back strong, even if things weren’t going right.” I’m fine for the moment. I will forever be grateful to you for that moment.”
Despite his struggles, Balakrishnan’s entrepreneurial spirit lives on. His story is the story of every small businessman who fights against the odds to keep his dream alive.
What are your thoughts on Balakrishnan’s debut in ‘Shark Tank India 2’? Let us know in the comments section.