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    Date submitted
  • 23-Feb-2018



In India, air pollution kills three people per minute. Pavan is a platform (website, app, and alert system) that fights this problem by allowing urban Indians do monitor air quality (real-time, forecasted, and historical levels), educate themselves with easily understood/ accessible content, receive real-time alerts and tips, streamline the purchase of air pollution equipment to avoid shortage/delays, and share awareness on social media as well as help the government with grassroots reporting of illegal pollution activities.


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Introduction Video

Additional Questions

Who is your customer?

Pavan's co-founder Shaili conducted extensive interviews in Delhi, India to find our customers in India. We also spoke to many partners and surveyed many others through our social media campaigns. Our initial target customers are wealth, educated parents in Delhi who are frustrated with the lack of information on air pollution and want to protect their children and elderly parents. After we successfully launch our product to this group, we hope to expand to expats, individuals with lung-related diseases and older individuals who are frustrated with the drastically higher air quality levels of the present. Much later, we plan to expand beyond just the wealthy individuals to those of the middle class, for example, or create a simpler version of our product for rural areas. In terms of geographic expansion, we want to move from Delhi to the seven other Indian cities we identified as being heavily polluted; beyond that, we hope to cover all of India and potentially launch internationally.

What problem does this idea/product solve or what market need does it serve?

Air pollution kills millions of people annual in India, as well as many developed and developing countries. Many people don't know that air pollution causes diseases like heart attack, affects brain development in children, causes many premature deaths, and cuts as many as five years in a healthy individual's lifespan. Information asymmetry and lack of access to air pollution equipment are the main perpetuators of this problem. Pavan aims to solve both of those problems with an excellent user interface, scientifically-backed content, and trusted partnerships.

What attributes will make this idea/product successful? Why do you believe that those features will create success?

Our platform aggregate data from five research groups, allowing urban Indians to monitor air quality real-time and find forecasted levels for their own location and for the rest of the city of Delhi (our first target city). This has never been done before, despite many users clamoring for information transparency. Next, we engage users through real-time alerts tailored to personal characteristics (i.e. having asthma) and so we engage users by providing individualized communication. Next, our platform has short, engaging articles which will allow users to read expert opinions in "bite-size" accessible pieces. Next, users can share air quality statistics and photos on social media, as well as report things like illegal trash burning to the government. Not only does this promote a grassroots approach to air pollution, but also it engages the major stakeholders. Other features we're thinking of adding including wearable sensors that connect to our app directly to improve the quality of our data and proprietary sensors throughout the city. We drew the plans for these features based on reviews of existing apps and competitors, as well as various customer, advisor, and business partner interviews.

Explain how you (your team) will execute to make this idea/product successful? What gives you (your team) an advantage over others already in the market or new to this market?

The main cofounders (CEO and COO) focus on sales, outreach, business, and strategy. The CMO focuses on successful ad campaigns. The CTO is developing the website and will work on our app. Our five research partners provide us the air quality information for our platform. We have several companies willing to sell on our platform and provide revenue. In terms of marketing, we have a three-pronged strategy consisting of partnerships with experts in the field, PR, and social media in order to reach as many customers as possible. Next, we have a basic website prototype (www.pavan-india.com). The strategic partnerships, intellectual property, and trusted brand image that Pavan has are all very important barriers to entry to other competitors. In addition, as mentioned in the competitive landscape on our slides, none of our competitors provide all of the following five attributes: real-time and forecasted data, accurate health information, features optimized for India, affordable pollution equipment, and a grassroots approach utilizing civic engagement. In fact, usually partners only fulfill two of the five categories. Lastly, Pavan is one of the first movers and aims to take over the Indian market by moving fast and using network effects. Pavan has many advantages over others already in the market or willing to enter.