We believe that the biggest brain drain in India today is an internal brain drain. We see hundreds of mothers dropping out from the workforce every day just for lack of adequate maternity leave or lack of support systems. In fact, only 23% of the workforce in India is constituted of women, shockingly lower than Middle East or Northern Africa. Getting women back to the workforce and supporting them through pregnancy and parenting is not only a moral imperative but a national economic need.
Which is why The Maternity Act, now passed by the Parliament, is the right step forward. As per data on BabyChakra, more than 60% of mothers who resumed work at earlier than 6 months gave up breastfeeding. 26 weeks of leave will allow mothers to exclusively breastfeed up to 6 months.
The introduction of childcare (creche) facilities by every establishment with 50 or more employees within a prescribed distance is an important enabler to getting mothers back in the workforce. The only aspect which needs to be urgently considered, is the introduction of Paternity benefits. Given that most families are nuclear, the responsibility of child care must be shared by both parents. This will begin to happen only when fathers will be granted paid childcare leave. Families end up sacrificing the mother's career so that the father can meet financial obligations. The repercussion to this is that the obligation to raise a child falls only on the mother. Also, employers may not take a woman's career as seriously/consider it an organisational burden vs. that of a man's.
Overall, it is heartening to see though the progressive steps taken by the govt. These are steps in the right direction to getting mothers to financial independence & develop an identity outside the home.
BabyChakra is a social discovery platform for young parents in India. It is the first-of-its-kind and the largest parenting platform in India for pregnancy and childcare.
It has the largest community of Indian moms online (1 million+ MUVs) and the biggest base of reviews on maternity and child care services.
The company raised its Series-A funding from Round Glass Partners (Seattle) in 2016 & its Seed round from Mumbai Angels, the Singapore Angel network and Arihant Patni in 2015.
For its disruptive innovation, it has won awards from Google, Microsoft, Exhibit among others. It has been highlighted internationally by Facebook, Wharton India Economic Forum, INC.com and TechCrunch.
The company’s goal is to become the go-to site& APP for resources and information on parenting and early childhood development.
The firm has over 17000 services listed on its platform spanning across Bangalore, Mumbai and Delhi. The firm has plans to expand its footprint abroad very soon. In the next three months, they are looking to bring on board over 10,000 more services across Mumbai then move on to Delhi and Bengaluru before gradually expanding to more cities.
The start-up has a 40-member strong team and it aims to have 2 million monthly users by 2017. The firm makes money by providing a marketing platform to companies, including Johnson & Johnson, MamyPoko, Babyoye and Unilever.
The company aims to build a one-stop ecosystem for baby care by integrating community, content and commerce. The company connects over 500000 young parents on a monthly basis.
It is also in the process of launching a commission-based model where it will provide with the services in maternity and child care and charge a commission on the services booked.
The company aims to capture 60% of 60 Million Indian moms online over the next year. The site also provides reviews of more than 25,000 maternity and childcare services.
The leadership team comprises of serial entrepreneurs and experienced industry professionals from leading ventures such as Google, Bloomberg, InMobi, HackerRank, Tiny Owl, Practo and others who have come together to create a global product from India.
The size of the baby care industry in India as of 2015, both online and offline put together, is $15-17 billion [Rs 1 lakh crore]. This is expected to exceed $20-22 billion by the end of 2017 as per RedSeer Consulting report.
In addition, the platform has a panel of 20 experts including paediatricians, baby weaning specialists, prenatal and lactation consultants and special needs educators.
They have a panel of experts covering most important aspects of Mom and childcare such as pediatrics, nutritionists, prenatal experts, lactation consultants, special needs experts, gynecologists among others.
Naiyya Saggi CEO & Founder, BabyChakra.
BabyChakra has been founded by NaiyyaSaggi, a Harvard Business School alumnus, who has extensive experience in maternity and child care having worked with both McKinsey and the Public Health Foundation of India.
Naiyya has been awarded as one of the leading young entrepreneurs in India by Google & Microsoft.
Naiyya is a graduate of the Harvard Business School (MBA 2012) where she was a Fulbright and J.N.Tata scholar. Prior to Babychakra,Naiyya was a management consultant at McKinsey & Company and at the Bridgespan group (Boston) where she worked extensively on her areas of passion - maternal, child health and education.