Success story of Make My Trip – How Deep Kalra turned his dream project into reality

How Deep Kalra turned his dream project into reality

There are many success stories in the world which have inspired thousands of youngsters to take the risks and start their own venture. In order to keep you motivated, today, we are going to tell you about one such company which started as a scratch and has now become India’s leading travel platform on the internet.

Under the guidance of Deep Kalra, Make My Trip has grown by leaps and bounds. Want to know about his success story or how did he manage to gain such fame? Read on to this blog.

To begin with, let’s understand what kind of a services Make My Trip offers.

About Make My Trip

The million-dollar company, Make My Trip, is one of the most popular online travel services platforms which provides the facilities like bookings of flight tickets, domestic and international holiday packages, hotel reservations, rail and bus tickets etc. It aims to offer a hassle-free experience to the customers throughout their journey.  

How did it begin?

Deep Kalra’s professional career started on a positive note. Soon after completing his MBA from the IIM, Ahmedabad, he went on to work with many big companies such as GE Capital, and ABN AMRO Bank. However, he wasn’t satisfied with this and wanted something more. So, he decided to take a huge risk by quitting his stable and good-paying job. In 1995, he joined an American firm, AMF Bowling, only to realize that this job as well did not worth his talent. As a result, he had to quit yet again.

After exiting the American company, Kalra began the old-age brainstorming session and that’s when he realised the growing dominance of online industry. But the main challenge for him was to choosing a particular niche to start his own startup. Deep did a research meticulously and noticed that with all the brokers, agents & middlemen in place, the online travel booking industry was quite messier at that time.

Hence, with an investment of USD 2 million and three partners, Sachin Bhatia, Keyur Joshi, and Rajesh Magow, Deep Kalra finally launched in 2000.

However, the company didn’t get off to a good start as within the two years of MMT’s launch, the dot com market crashed, taking down everything that Kalra and his team had begun. Needless to say, it was a very difficult time for Kalra and his company but somehow, he steadied the ship with his firm decisions. Eventually, Kalra’s approach served him well and Make My Trip began to gain the trust of its customers yet again. Once everything got back on track, the travel platform started making awesome revenues in no time. As a result, the company even crossed 1000-cr milestone in 2008.

Founders and the team

Deep Kalra was born in Hyderabad and obtained his bachelor’s degree in Economics from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi in 1990. Later on, he did his MBA from IIM, Ahmedabad in 1992.

Deep’s business partner and Make My Trip’s co-founder, Rajesh Magow is an alumnus of Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI). Before joining MMT, Magow served as the Regional Head at Aptech Ltd.

Growth in the market

Deep Kalra didn’t have a desirable start when he launched Make My Trip but with his resilience and hard work, he successfully made his brand a monopoly in the market. This can be evident from the fact that the company’s turnover has kept increasing year after year. MMT saw its revenues more than triple in the third quarter of 2020 despite the fear of pandemic across the country.

If we talk about the current scenario, Make My Trip is one of the biggest Online Travel Agents (OTAs) in India, having a base of over seven million happy customers and page views crossing 20 million every month.

Make My Trip came into the limelight when it was listed on NASDAQ in August 2010!

 Reason behind MMT’s success

You must have heard the popular saying “No pain, no gain”. MMT and its founders had also faced their fair share of struggle during their journey to success, just every other startup. But what makes them different from other was their smart business strategy. They used those obstacles to expand their reach far beyond the imaginations. No matter how much difficult the times were, Kalra’s company managed to survive all the challenges.

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