Whether you are an individual, a startup or an established business, handling taxes can always be a daunting task. Businesses are known to spend a lot of cash so that experts can help them handle taxes better. Individuals sometimes end up paying more taxes because of lack of expertise.
MakeMyReturns is a startup that does exactly what you need as far as taxes are concerned. We got a chance to interact with the founders Vikram and Aashish Ramchand and here is what they had to say.
Q. What is MakeMyReturns.com all about and why do you think this was needed?
MakeMyReturns.com is an online tax planning, saving and filing service dedicated to making taxes easier for everyone. We come from over 60 years experience in the field of taxation and have built every inch of our experience into the proprietary algorithms which help you save a lot more on taxes than ever before. This service is especially useful for salaried employees who can simply upload their digital form 16 and get done with their taxes!
Similarly, for our self employed professionals providing invaluable services , we simply ask you to upload your tally data file or excel financial statements and you are done with your filing!
In a country like India, where the internet penetration is still at 5-6% of the total population, and where tax compliance is at about 5%, an online and efficient tax planning and filing service that helps you save those hard earned Rupees was the need of the hour and we decided to diversify our brick and mortar legal practice to the online space.
Q. How did it all start and when?
In 2011, my brother and I realized we’re having a discussion about the state of affairs in India and how tax compliance is significantly low. We realized that the major roadblock for tax knowledge and compliance in India was the fact that people did not have access to expert tax professional and advisers We realized that we had the expertise and there was no better way to bring it to the world than via the Internet.
Q. There are many such offline services also. Do you think entering the online space has been a challenge?
Yes, there are several offline service providers, in fact, we are one of them, but the online space was a frontier that needed to be conquered in order to increase tax compliance and thereby awareness about the importance of paying and filing your taxes in time. A mass medium like the Internet was the best platform to launch such a service. The biggest challenge we have faced so far was the mental transition between an online tax advisory and compliance service and our current offline tax advisory practice – the online customer is unknown and we have to quickly understand his problems and come out with a solution.
Q. There are other service providers also who provide something similar. How are you ensuring better services?
We keep things simple. Our Technology is people and experience driven. We have built and hand picked every aspect of the technology using the years of experience and practical know how of taxes in India.
We have a bunch of enthusiastic CA’s and tax professionals who enjoy what they do. Taxes have never been fun for most people, but our guys love helping others and helping them save even more with each passing year. In order to be more efficient, we have three dedicated teams – one for each of our customer types – salaried – professional and Non Resident Indians- comprising of smart blokes who have gone through and solved hundreds and thousands of tax issues just like the ones that our prospective customers are currently facing.
Q. We know you have been funded. Can you give a little more detail about that and how it all happened?
Yes, we are funded by a venture capital fund based out of the Middle East. We have secured a first round of funding and will soon raise more via a second round. My current connection with London Business School helped us in perfecting our business model and making our company an attractive investment for venture capital funds associated with London Business School.
Q. Do you provide tax services and help for startups and small businesses too?
Of course, we love startups and small businesses – they are the future backbone and growth drivers of our economy. Being a startup ourselves, we understand the compliance and legal issues faced by other companies and are here to help at any time. Small business owners can seek tax advise and filing services through our Professional Services section.
Q. Finally, what are your short term and long term goals. Where do you want to see MakeMyReturns.com in the coming days?
In the short term, we plan on making our filing and planning process even more efficient by redesigning certain process flows. We also plan on introducing more services that put the customer completely in charge of his tax matters including filing rectifications – checking refund and ITR-V status and even communicating with the IT department directly through your personal dashboard. We aim to makemyreturns.com the final word on tax matters, so whatever be your tax problem, we are there to not only solve it, but help you save taxes more than ever before.
About The Founders
Founder, Vikram Ramchand is a computer science engineer from the Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta and an MBA from the London Business School. He has founded two successful startups and is now leading the innovation and technology at MakeMyReturns.com.
Co-Founder, Aashish Ramchand is a chartered accountant by profession with years of experience in International Taxation. He has previously worked with KPMG and Ernst and Young. Aashish builds on the tax knowledge base for MakeMyReturns.com and trains the junior chartered accountants into giving the best possible customer experience.
Co- Founder, Varun Advani is a budding Chartered Accountant and works with M.B. Advani and Company. Varun is the brain behind the complex tax algorithms devised at MakeMyReturns.com.[divider]
Well, it was definitely a pleasure interacting with these guys. Like Vikram says, “They are here to solve.” If you are an individual or a business and want help with your taxes, head over to MakeMyReturns.com right away.