Explara is an event platform that takes the role of making events simple to organize and delightful to participate in. It was started in 2008 by Santosh Panda and Ashok Kumar, friends since their engineering days. Explara offers an integrated event platform for ticketing-registration, event community membership and events apps to organize any kind of event, conference, webinars, fundraising and RSVP.
Santosh got the idea of Explara while listening to radio. “An ad looking for venues for an event helped us stumble on the opportunity to tap the huge potential of online event management solutions. This was a pure form of accidentally entering a massive unorganized industry ‘Event management industry’,” says Santosh. “During 2008, we launched it as ‘Venue and Event Listing porta’ but we realized that venue booking is complete manual process with zero interest by the venue owners to use any ‘technology’ as such. However we got strong interest from small event managers for an ‘event registration and ticketing’ solution. That kick started the journey to pivot to ‘Event ticketing & solution platform’ and formally launch during Sept 2009,” adds Ashok.
Explara offers both one-off event organizing and community event-organizing solutions. Their event ticketing product provides various unique offerings such as Invitation only event organizing, multi-currency ticket types, integrated support ticketing tools, and team collaboration to manage an event. “We have customizable payment processing for each country/continent. For example in India, we provide TEN types payment processing for online, offline ticket sale/registration. The offline payment processing will be expanded as we expand to south Asian and similar market,” says Santosh.
Explara’s Apps Marketplace (in Beta) aims to extend apps and tools for pre-event, event-day and post-event end-to-end needs. They have partners located in UK, Hong Kong, Singapore and Philippines and plan to take their venture across the globe. Explara has raised angel funding during Jan 2013 from Blume Ventures, Harvard Business School Alumni Angels & Rejan Anandan. Prior to that, they bootstrapped for 3 years with founder’s consulting/contracting earning.
As a message for future entrepreneurs, Santosh says, “Starting up is easy, staying put is tough. Place your bets well.”