The Story of Salt Technologies
Hi, I’m Nilesh Bansi Gadekar, Founder & CEO of Salt Technologies.
If you have got a few minutes, I would like to share the untold story of how ‘Salt Technologies’ was born in 2012.
I started my career in the IT industry in October 2009 in Bangalore. Back then, I was working for India’s one of the largest IT companies, Infosys. While working for our clients, I got an opportunity to work with another giant company in the field, Yahoo Inc.
The decision to leave the job
Everything was going great with the job, and a substantial five-digit salary was getting credited every month on the last day. But, I always wanted to get into the business.
My friends, a trip to Ladakh with them, and my love for my family triggered the decision, and I left my job. I came back to Pune and started to work with my friends on a startup called Kiranamart.
How Salt Technologies was born?
I handled the startup’s technical part and developed an e-commerce website with a back-office for the startup. But due to financial constraints, we could not take the startup to the next level.
We decided to start different companies and to start providing services in our expertise. As I was from a technical background, I started a tech company called ‘Salt Technologies.’
My friends Manoj & Varun, who were with me for the startup, started a structural design (civil engineering) company called ‘Salt Design Services.’
नमक सा प्यारा (As Dear As Salt)
While eating vada-pav & sipping a cutting chai at roadside tapari with Manoj, we discussed the company name.
Everything in vada-pav was okay except the salt. It made vada-pav taste completely useless.
That reminded me of the Hindi story I had learned while I was in 6th standard called “नमक सा प्यारा.” The moral of the story was that even if you have all the wealth, even if you are an emperor, your daily meal & your life is tasteless without a pinch of salt.
I told the story to Manoj, and we decided that we will name our company “Salt.” I named my tech company ‘Salt Technologies’ and he named his civil engineering company ‘Salt Design.’
The Initial Struggle
‘Salt Technologies’ was started as a proprietary firm, and I was the only person in the company. I started working from my home and developed the company’s business website. It was a single-page website back then, based on Java.
I started working on the site’s SEO, and within a few days, I received my first inquiry from the website. Within the next few weeks, I received the first paying customer, and the journey started.
I didn’t have too much capital amount to invest in the business. So, I started a tiny shared office in a small 1 BHK apartment. Initial few computers & desks were borrowed from friends & family.
After a few months of journey as a single man team, I hired a few team members to grow as a company.
Sujay Bhagwat, my childhood friend, was working with a leading IT company, Syntel. While doing his job, wherever he got some time, he used to help me with his creative skills.
By mid-2013, Salt was growing. So was growing the workload. It was getting disorganized with multiple concurrent projects. So, I needed someone who can organize tasks, manage projects, and talk to clients.
Sujay was the right person to do all these things as he was good with communication & management skills. It wasn’t an easy decision for him to leave the five-digit salary job and join a startup. But he sacrificed his job, convinced his family, and joined Salt.
This step accelerated Salt’s growth speed.
Some plans failed
1 BHK apartment wasn’t sufficient now. Within a few months of Sujay joining the company, we moved to a 3 BHK penthouse office with a bigger team. It was one of our bold moves towards growth in search of success.
Till then, we were building HTML websites and custom PHP applications for our clients. The business was great, and we were busy. But my dream of building a successful SaaS product was still incomplete.
We had a good team by now. We added a few more team members for the SaaS product and built ‘CV Ease.’ It was an online resume builder.
‘CV Ease’ had more than 10,000 registered users in the next year, but somehow it could not generate the revenue we were expecting from it. Unfortunately, we had to shut down the product and get back to the original business model.
Failure helped us
During the same time, another team built some useful HTML templates & WordPress themes. That helped us becoming WordPress experts. SaaS product’s experience helped us in understanding UI & UX better.
We started implementing all of our learnings in our web development projects. Results were getting better now. More and more clients were getting delighted with whatever we were building for them.
‘Salt Technologies,’ a proprietary firm until now, became a separate entity ‘Salt Web Technologies Private Limited’ in Feb 2016. Though the formation changed, the brand name remains ‘Salt Technologies.’
We bagged our first big custom WordPress development project during this time, and it made a massive shift in our point of view about WordPress.
We never looked back since then. We have been continuously growing, and currently, we are a team of around 20 people who are experts in something.
In 2018, we had moved to a fully commercial space. Within the next few months, we might need a bigger office space for expansion.
With all the experience we had in web development, we have understood that there is never a full-stop for a corporate business website. You always need to keep improving it. That’s why now we provide retainer services. These are already bringing great results for our clients.
Today, eight years after Salt was started, we have delivered over 500 projects successfully. And every month, we are learning new things in web development, user experience, project management, lead generation, etc.
It was a delight for us when our first client received some excellent returns on their investment. Years have passed, and it is still a delight for us when our current clients receive superior returns on their investment.
Some dreams are still unfulfilled, and the journey is still incomplete. We will keep working smart & hard every day and will reach new heights. We will complete 1000 worldwide web development projects soon & will come with a successful SaaS product one day.
Founder & CEO,