Alumni Connect: My college director inspired me to become an entrepreneur, says Vikram Kumar
Vikram Kumar, an engineer, analytics expert, entrepreneur, co-founder and managing director of SRV media, digital media marketing agency, says success is about identifying opportunities, making optimum use of them and ensuring constant improvement in oneself and the working ecosystem. He talks about his alma mater and how it shaped his career and life.
Tell us about your educational background
I completed my schooling from Bokaro Ispat Vidyalaya (BIV) and Bokaro Ispat Senior Secondary School. I did my bachelors in engineering from Birla Institute of Technology, Mesra and completed MBA (IT) in 2011 from Symbiosis Centre for Information Technology. Currently, I am pursuing a PhD in digital media marketing, under the mentorship of Ramakrishnan Raman, director Symbiosis Institute of Business Management (SIBM).
How were you as a student?
I was not at the top of the class in academics. However, my academic performance improved while studying at Symbiosis Centre for Information Technology. I was able to hone my skills as per the industry and make a mark as an entrepreneur.
What made you choose this career path?
My mentor Raman Ramakrishnan, who was the director of Symbiosis Centre for Information Technology (SCIT) back in the day, when I was doing my MBA, inspired me to become an entrepreneur. Conversations with him gave me direction and helped fine-tune my dreams into reality. I had also worked with the idea of an incubation group in my college. Together, we presented and executed small-scale business ideas, which gave me further insights into operations, marketing and sales. I feel such college activities helped me showcase startup ideas.
Tell us about your experience of stepping into the corporate world
When I completed my graduation in 2008 our economy was going through a recession and there were hardly any jobs for engineers in the market. Also, I didn’t want to take up a 9am to 5pm job so I took admission for MBA from Symbiosis. After completing my MBA, I worked as an assistant manager at HDFC to gain managerial experience and started my own business in 2013.
How did your college help you in achieving your goals?
Me and my co-partner, Rohit Prasad, used to take up digital marketing projects during our college days to explore the domain. We used to involve our college friends to write for us and in return, we use to provide food for them. This experience helped us carve our path to start our business from scratch.
What about the highs and lows of your career so far?
There were many lows in the initial days of our career. Many talented people from our team left due to differences in vision. Also, we did not have enough clients. It took us several years to build trust in the market. This year has been one of the best years for SRV Media, now we have 100+ clients. We also have a strong team which sticks together through thick and thin.
What are your future plans?
We aim to build technological assets which help our clients get a better return on investments from digital advertisement spendings. We are also working on building an impactful presence in the global market.