Meet The Founder: Dr Ritesh Malik {Innov8}

Dr Ritesh Malik is one of India’s leading Doctorpreneurs and investor. He runs a virtual Startup Accelerator in India, right now putting resources into and mentoring multiple new businesses across different industries.Malik’s organization Innov8 has leased prime land to assemble co-working spaces, remembering one for Connaught Place in New Delhi, one of the world’s most costly office markets. The Post India talks to this serial entrepreneur

How will co-working change in the future?
Ans: There will be fundamental increment in the adoption of flexible spaces worldwide in the near future. We’ll see a sharp V shaped recovery of the coworking spaces. Businesses no longer would want to have large rental liabilities & managing traditional landlords. There will be increment in work from home, at least 20% of worktime would be now from home permanently & coworking providers would actually build professional studios within residential complexes / peoples houses & make them productive. Current WFH is not scalable.

At Innov8 how are you keeping your staff and tenants safe?
Ans: We have adopted a range of precautions & safety measures, made the coworking experience as touch less as possible. At the same time, screening & reporting of symptoms via tech is something we see which will help. We’re also using repeated fumigation in the campuses & using sanitisers like water, nothing is more critical for us than safety of our teams & coworkers.

How have you seen startups pivot in the lockdown? Particularly startups you mentor?
Ans: This is an unprecedented crisis, which 99% of the world has never experience before at this scale. This forces companies to take up the fundamental philosophies of agility, asset light model, free cash flow generation, sustainable growth & profitability at the core value of their immediate to long term strategy. Be it large conglomerations or small startups, we’re facing an existential threat due to destruction of both supply & demand. This also creates a massive opportunity in the world to create alternative models of business & build value.

What have been some key learnings as a business leader from the pandemic?
Ans: Focus on agility, keep the company as small as possible, scale with caution, generate tons of free cashflow, create insanely powerful culture, become anti fragile, control ur expenses, throw intellect at challenges than money. As Darwin said, its not the largest, strongest or the fastest that will survive its the 1 who adapts to change quickly that will survive. Evolution is true in business, change is the only constant.

Any advice for travel startups?
Ans: Just hang in there, there will be massive demand the day vaccine is accessible, this demand would be higher than any seen in the past 1000 years of human history. Stay afloat, that’s it, you’ll be just fine! 🙂

What type of startups are you looking to invest in?
Ans: Heavy on tech, patents, moat, platforms, very sector agnostic, but which solves a large need. Bharat is the new focus, Deglobalisation is here, produce & consume within the country.
What do you look for in a startup as an investor?
Ans: Founder! Founder! Founder! 🙂

Favourite Book?
Ans: Execution – Larry Bossidi & Ram Charan

How has what you learnt in medicine influenced your entrepreneurial journey?
Ans: Helps you a) become insanely hardworking, medical college is sheer hard work. Teaches you patience, b) helps you tackle continuous emergencies, common between a doctor & entrepreneur.

What advice do you have for startup founders for thriving during the pandemic? Ans: Spend time with family, stop creating FEAR, its false evidence appearing real. The world is be back to normal, post this consumption pattern would be above the roof. Focus on health & stay positive. 🙂