Mohammed Shaker Talks Nepal, Giving Money Back, and Hard Work
Getting paid to buy products. To many people, this sounds impossible. Well, Mohammed Shaker’s Panda Cash Back is this entrepreneur’s answer to those doubts. His startup, asks users to sign up with the site and begin shopping to earn money back.
Once a user has earned at least $15 in cash back, Panda Cash Back sends users that money as quickly as the next day via PayPal. While the stores one can shop may seem limited to some, it’s a way for others who love spending money and do it, and get something back in return so they can buy more stuff.
We had a chance to interview Panda Cash Back’s founder Mohammed Shaker, and here’s what he shared with us:
How’d you come up with the name for your company?
Panda is my favorite animal. A couple of years ago, I got one pair of cute baby panda dolls. They got a lot of attention and it got hundreds of comments on my Facebook page. When I was thinking about the company name, the posting reminded me of something specific and gave me some ideas.
Panda is perfect actually – it makes people feel easily comfortable and smile. Panda Cash back derived from my favorite panda baby dolls.
What’s the very first thing you do at work everyday?
The very first thing I start with my new day is to do a customer service, check emails and answers questions, and also to try and solve problems. Customers service is my priority.
How many people were invoved when the company started and how many people are there now?
It started by myself and whenever I need some technical assistance I rely on outsourcing. There are few companies that I outsource most of my work to. I have been dealing with them for long time and I find them reliable.
How do you handle frustration? When/how was the last time you dealt with frustration?
What’s helped me is reading about success stories. When I see how people have triumphed through hardship, that inspires me.
What’s your office environment like?
My office environment is very simple, and quiet. It’s very traditional.
How do you picture your company in 5 years?
I’m planning to provide additional services beside rebates such as shopping tips and reviews from our visitors regarding their shopping experience. It would be a good place to get perfect information about online shopping.
Who or what inspires you?
The book inspires me a lot. It means not a specific book; any book can get me into the new world: Art, successful man’s biography, world economy trends, even magazines. This is because I get to know about something new, it gives me the new energy.
How’d you fund this venture?
Thanks to God, I got enough seed money from my very successful business that was a site I previously had built. A lot of investors wanted to buy it and when I sold it, it was sold at 500% profit.
Got any great bootstrapping tips for the lean startups out there?
Be patient, it is always hard at first to get started. I’ve met many people with great ideas, but their ideas have never seen the sun. They gave up shortly after they started. Just remember that hard work and dedication always pay off.
What would you be doing if you had one year off and $500,000 to spend?
I’d take $100,000 for personal purposes such as emergency money.
Then, with $400,000 I’d donate it for a scholarship foundation in Nepal. I lived in Nepal as volunteer for two years actually. The scholarship foundation would help to build up library or give scholarships to students.
Of course, there is so much we could do with such cash. If we can give lands to schools which they then can plant vegetables then they could sell those vegetables and provide some kind of income for the school itself. Or, it could be used to feed the students. I think I could make it work. It’s my dream.
Do you consider yourself a successful entrepreneur right now?
Yes I do, because I know what I am doing and I feel that I am good at it. I do my best. Sometimes my efforts come with good results. Even when I fail, I feel it’s okay. I always learn a valuable lessons from my mistakes. As long as I am learning something new, I will be successful, always
Mobile App you’re in love with and why?
Netflix. It connects with good movies that I can watch in my spare time.
Dogs or cats?
Well, they both adorable, but I would have to go with cats on this one.
iOS or Android?
Android. Currently, I have an android mobile phone and it’s cool, the Samsung Galaxy 3.
Number 1 country you’ve always wanted to visit but haven’t yet?
What’s the greatest thing about your company?
Giving cash back to customers with the highest rates. I designed my website to give back more to customers.
Where can our readers get ahold of you?
The company website. I do check the emails that I receive through the website on daily basis.
So, email is always easy and simple and fast!
Also, check out my personal page.