By Sidharth Rath
IN CONVERSATION WITH KIRAN VERMA, FOUNDER – SIMPLY BLOOD.
(Simply Blood is fundraising now to support their sustained operations of making blood accessible for free for all. Support them! Check the fundraiser here: CLICK HERE)
Simply Blood, a social startup by Kiran Verma connects a person who needs blood directly with a blood donor, making the process transparent. The school dropout turned founder has taken it upon himself to ensure that nobody who needs blood suffers, while people who want to donate blood need not worry about misuse.
As Kiran claims on the fundraiser page, Simply Blood since its release of the android app on 29 January 2017 with a humble aim to save 100 potential lives in 2017, in less than 4 months has saved more than “700 potential lives at ‘NO COST’ to receiver or blood donor.”
Read the full interview below:
Sidharth Rath: Why did you start Simply Blood?
Kiran Verma: I lost my mother at the age of 7 due to cancer and I know the pain of losing someone. There are 38,000 blood units required everyday and 1.5 lakh units of blood is being wasted every year. So, I thought of creating a platform that solves both of these issues.
SR: How exactly do you solve the problem?
KV: We have created World’s First Virtual Blood Donation Platform where we are not taking the blood from a blood donor without any need, but we are connecting a blood donor with the needy directly without any middlemen.
Most people don’t know where their blood is being used after donating blood in a blood donation camp. So we decided to come up with a solution to send donor directly to the needy.
With this we are reducing the turnaround time, reducing the blood transfusion cost, and also donor can see visible impact with the blood donated instantly without possible wastages in storage etc.
SR: Quite simple and impressive! How scalable is the model?
KV: The potential of the model is huge as we can reach out to virtually every country with the app-based model. The model runs on a process based app, so negligible amount of manpower is required to scale.
SR: What is your vision for Simply Blood?
KV: Our vision is to create a platform which is free and accessible throughout the world, saving 1 million lives by 2020.
SR: That’s inspiring. And what’s the biggest challenge you face today?
KV: Initially I thought to start this as a social initiative with limited opportunities to scale/expand but later I realised that there are many small issues which needs to be addressed beyond blood. That unexpected expansion forced us to look beyond what we have planned or STOP the platform.
SR: Tell us a little bit about the fundraiser!
KV: Unfortunately, we have had to face a situation where we have only 2 options: either shut down the operations or raise funds to develop the platform further.
Initially I thought to go for a loan, but that got rejected as I was not earning anything. Later when I went to government officials and political parties, I saw that it was close to impossible to get the funds.
So, I decided to go the crowd funding way, where I could raise only Rs. 38K which was less than 7% of what I was looking for. So I decided to stop the program but there was something else planned for me.
I made a post on LinkedIn which reached to many people who motivated me and forced me to start fresh. So, here we are with a new campaign to raise funds.
SR: Thank you so much for your time! Wish you all the best in your commendable journey.
Do you want to help Simply Blood make access to blood accessible for free for everyone? Support them! Check the fundraiser here: CLICK HERE