It’s never too early to begin building your startup. Ruchir L. Sharma is in the 9th grade. When he’s not in class at Doon Public School in New Delhi, India, he’s at work constructing a new social network. No, he doesn’t want to be the next Mark Zuckerberg or creator of the next Facebook. He wants to be Ruchir Sharma, founder of KikHub.
As I’m dragged into the Timeline incarnation of Facebook, I know I’m not the only disgruntled user more open to another social network than I would have been in the past. I’m certainly always energized by enterprising youth. Here’s what the bootstrapping Mr. Sharma had to tell KillerStartups about his Kikhub project, currently in beta.
How’d you come up with the name for your company?
KikHub gets its name from “Kik,” which is a misspelling of the acronym LOL (Laugh Out Loud) and Hub, which means, “A place or thing that forms the effective center of an activity, region, or network.”
What’s the very first thing you do at work everyday?
The very first thing I do usually is look at some statistics (like number of users, posts, bookmarks, etc).
How many people did you start the company with and how many people work for you now?
The truth is that I am a high school freshman (9th grader). I started this company alone, and currently I am the only person working here.
Remember the early days starting up? Maybe you can share one anecdote that describes the struggle you went through?
I initially came up with the name “EnderSpace.” The domain enderspace.com was registered by somebody else. That really shattered my dreams, and I was left frustrated for a month or two. I abandoned my project.
How do you handle frustration? When/how was the last time you dealt with frustration?
I usually beat frustration by playing some good old Sims, or listening to Beatles songs.
How do you picture your company in 5 years?
A decent social network for people who still care about privacy.
Who or what inspires YOU? Role models? Running? Video games? Snack food?
How’d you fund this venture?
Got any great bootstrapping tips for the lean startups out there?
Create something that you will love using yourself.
What would you be doing if you had one year off and $500,000 to spend (and you couldn’t spend it on your current startup / projects)?
I would travel the world in search of unusual stuff and people.
Do you consider yourself a successful entrepreneur right now? If not, what’s it gonna take to make you feel successful?
I would be successful the moment I create something great for mankind.
Website you couldn’t live without and why?
Google. Use that a lot. Also Wikipedia.
Mobile App you’re in love with and why?
Dogs or cats?
iOS or Android?
Android. Because it’s Open Source
Number 1 country you’ve always wanted to visit but haven’t yet?
What’s the greatest thing about your company/website/idea?
The greatest thing is the simplicity and privacy. You can feel comfortable sharing your data because nothing is ever revealed to third parties.
Where can our readers get a hold of you?
Perhaps the best way is to drop me a line on kikhub.com.