Internet has become an inseparable part of our lives today. Just a simple click and you are introduced to an ocean of information. The ever-increasing demand for internet services is a testimony of how internet has penetrated into our lives today. This has also opened growth prospects for internet service providers to achieve the Government’s Digital India vision. One such player who has stood the tide of exponential consumption of internet services and created a niche for itself is WEFE Technology Private Limited. Started by Nitin Agrawal (managing director) and Prashant Agrawal (director) in 2009, WEFE has become synonymous with the best, reliable and affordable internet services in Odisha. The success story of the brother duo is an inspiration for the young entrepreneurs of the state. Today they serve both corporate and domestic users in Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Khurda and Berhampur.They are present in almost all the sectors like hospitality, IT, medical, automobiles, manufacturing, education and media among others.
It all started when Nitin was pursuing engineering studies in Odisha. There was always an urge in him to do something of his own. After completing his studies in 2008 he briefly worked for a few telecom companies. It was then he felt there were only handful of players providing good internet services in Bhubaneswar. He saw that as an opportunity and hence prepared a business model. He then discussed it with his younger brother Prashant, who earlier worked in New Delhi and both of them decided to quit their respective professions. Thus WEFE came into existence on July 15, 2009. “It was a brave decision for both of us. Back then not many players were present in the market and those present weren’t really providing professional internet services. Thus we decided to fill in the vacuum. Nevertheless the whole objective was to ensure reliable and faster internet services to the customers and make their internet browsing experience hassle-free,” reminisces Prashant.
While the existing players provided internet services through cabling system then, WEFE became one of the pioneers to introduce internet services through wireless technology. But the initial challenges for WEFE were galore. Starting from funds crunch to lack of manpower, the duo had to go through several hardships in the beginning. But it did not take too long for WEFE to reach out to the customers. People were also inquisitive to know about their product and showed confidence in them. Once the ball got rolling, the duo have never looked back.
“During that time, we came up with an innovative idea by offering monthly internet plan starting with Rs. 10 which was more or less like a backup plan. Subsequently we introduced another monthly internet plan of Rs. 150 for the domestic users. But in 2013 we closed our residential user plans and decided to solely focus on the corporate segment. This was done to streamline our services and expand our footprint for a particular segment,” Prashant pointed out. Today WEFE provides unlimited monthly internet plan for home users starting from just Rs 500 with 5Mbps speed and Rs 1900 at 100Mbps speed for corporate users.
Nitin feels the industry has witnessed unprecedented growth over the last few years. Thus ensuring round-the-clock hassle-free internet services and staying updated with the latest technologies are two biggest challenges for him. “Every day is a new challenge for us. We always strive hard to provide the best and reliable services that are at par with national and global standards,” he says adding that the skilled and experienced technical support team at WEFE differentiates them from other competitors.
Prashant was all in praise for the efforts taken by the state government to support the home-grown entrepreneurs. Having already partnered the government for several skill development events in the state before, he believes some more improved policies on skill development will enthuse players like WEFE to surge ahead in the market.
Recently WEFE completed 9 years of successful journey in Odisha. “Initially we started off with only 3 members in the team. But today our team boasts of over 50 experienced and spirited staffs and employees. We believe that the success of a product like ours depends on the user experience. Our existing users are our ambassadors who have helped us reach this far. Their word of mouth has worked very well for us in the past and we intend to continue doing that. That said, we have adopted several strategies to reach the user base properly. We engage through local events with users and encourage them to share feedback with our team directly either by dropping a mail or through a simple phone call. We also encourage our users to post their feedback on social media,” says Prashant.
The brother duo are confident that their hard work will pay rich dividends one day. Despite several challenges and emergence of new players in the market, they both have stayed like pillars for one another and working day in and day out for the sake of customers.
Among the many ambitious plans, WEFE is in the process of expanding its footprint to other cities of the state in the future. “We’re soon rolling out our services in Puri in the next couple of months. But our ultimate aim is to see WEFE emerging as the numero uno internet service provider in Odisha in the future,” he signs off.