"The value of your society determines the valuation of your wealth; let's build a valuable society."
18th September 2022 marks the 14th anniversary of Suvision Holdings Private Limited & also my entrepreneurial journey. I come from a village where we got electricity when I was in 7th Standard & our imagination of richness or luxury lifestyle was limited to what we used to see back in our village & in our town. But when I moved from my village to Shimoga city for my graduation, my imagination expanded as I was exposed to many new things. And when I got access to the internet and moved to Bangalore City for my career, things changed for me. Coming from a place which gifted many great people to this country, like Kuvempu, U R Ananthamurthy (Jnanapeeta Awardees) and Kadidal Manjappa (Ex Chief Minister of Karnataka), I was naturally committed to dedicating my life to a bigger cause than just settling down in life.
When I met the auto driver with whom an insurance salesperson cheated, I saw a huge opportunity & need to build a financial education company in India. And we built India's first & largest financial education company. Though we were happy about the impact we made by educating over 9 million people through our call centre, we wanted to build a bigger & more sustainable business. That's when we decided to build a mobile application to deliver financial education to the masses in different languages. Though we were convinced of the opportunity, we wanted to understand people's sentiments about an idea of this kind. Hence I conducted 28 Financial Freedom Workshops from the 3rd of November 2019 to the 6th of March 2022 & met over 7000 people in person. Though Financial Freedom Workshop was conducted to teach people the five things we do with money - Earn, Save, Spend, Invest & Borrow, people were more interested in the Earning part. We built ffreedom.com
to teach people to manage their money better, but they taught us during these in-person workshops that "it's not that we don't know to manage money, but we don't have enough money to manage".
If you study this problem closely, you will understand how the world has changed in the last two decades. Back in my village, even a 5th standard student Today knows about the lifestyle of "who is who in this country", thanks to the internet. While I am happy about the progress we have made as a country in achieving this information revolution, I am equally worried about the possible damages it may cause, or it is already causing. I believe every individual should be allowed to build the capability to fulfil one's aspirations; otherwise, they may find shortcuts to fulfilling their aspirations which is dangerous to society.
I consider the biggest fraud of Independent India is the discrimination being done in the name of govt schools / private schools, state syllabus / CBSE / ICSE / IB and Kannada medium / Hindi medium / English medium. Unless we provide equal access to the same quality education to all, we won't build a society in which feel safe to live. Though what is already being done can't be undone, I only hope the governments take the necessary steps to fix this going forward. Those affected due to this discrimination can't be ignored; they should be at least given access to knowledge & opportunities to build their livelihood.
This is when we decided to upgrade from just a financial education company to a livelihood education company and launched the ffreedom app on the 20th of March 2020. Today, the ffreedom app has over 900 courses in 6 languages taught by over 1500 successful people from farming & business. In the last 30 months, we have helped over 83 lakh people access high-quality livelihood education, and we are proud that over 1.65 lakh people have become micro-entrepreneurs.
Our team took up various initiatives in the last year to spread the need for "sharing knowledge & opportunities", and some of the key initiatives are,
Icons of Bharat (season 1)- A 28-episode TV reality show to celebrate the success & passion of 60 amazing micro-entrepreneurs who came forward to share their success know-how to build a better Bharat. Season 1 of the show was aired on NDTV India from the 29th of May to the 11th of September every Saturday & Sunday between 9.30 PM to 10.30 PM.
ffreedom Show - We are currently hosting the ffreedom show in partnership with 5 TV channels in Kannada & Telugu.
ffreedom Nest - A unique initiative to coach our members who started their venture after watching courses on the ffreedom app.
On this special occasion, I want to thank all our 1500+ mentors who selflessly supported our mission to "share knowledge & opportunities" to build a better Bharat. I congratulate all our 83 lakh members for their courage to embrace micro-entrepreneurship. This journey wouldn't have been possible without my team, who stood with me in all our adventures; I thank each one from the bottom of my heart. I am always grateful to our Chairman & my mentor, Sashi Sir, for his untiring mentoring in serving this noble cause. I am also thankful to all our board members & investors for their continued faith in us. I must also thank all our media friends for taking our initiatives to people and supporting us throughout. How can I forget to thank those who tested their talent by troubling us in all possible means? They did contribute to this journey and made us strong. And last but not least, my family for sacrificing so much to support my mission.
Before I conclude, I promise all our well-wishers that this is still a beginning. We will soon transform ourselves from a livelihood education platform to a "livelihood platform for the world".
With Best Wishes
C S Sudheer
Founder & CEO, ffreedom app