V S S Mani founder & CEO of Just Dial
Just Dial is India’s first local search destination and telephonic information services provider. The company caters to over 25 million users spread across 240 cities in India with a single national number. This unique concept was bought by V.S.S. Mani in 1994 in Mumbai.
V.S.S. Mani is serving as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Company “Just Dial”.This thought about this he while was working for yellow pages company called United Database India (UDI) in 1987.It was 1989, and when he had established India’s first phone-based directory in Delhi along with three other partners. His focus was on building the consumer helpline number, not just the brand. The idea was to have a unique number that would register in the minds of customers. It was very critical time for him.
In 1996, he came Mumbai with Rs. 50,000, and borrowed furniture, rented computers, a small office at Malad and five employees, he launched Just Dial. He went to Mumbai’s Kandivali MTNL exchange and approached the general manager at MTNL. Manager agreed to give me the number that he want – 888 8888, he was well aware of the importance of having an easy to remember number .
Company managed revenue of Rs 25 lakh in the first year. Mani started it with the sum of Rs 50,000, he has built a business with an annual turnover of Rs 100 crore and a valuation in excess of Rs 500 crore. In March 2009, Just Dial posted revenues of about Rs 134 crore.
Just Dial is available in India through various channels – phone, Web, WAP and SMS. The company also launched its local search service in North America on a toll-free number, 1-800-justdial.