Blue Screen Of Duds

Where the alter ego of codelust plays

A Brijj too far

with 21 comments

When I started writing this sort of a review, I honestly wanted to rip Info Edge apart for releasing such a sham of a website. Having read a lot of what Sanjeev Bikhchandani has written and said over time and having seen Naukri grow into the robust company that it is today, I had considerably greater expectations from Brijj. But I’ll hold my horses, tone down the criticism and look at the larger picture, that the blame is almost universally spread out among the Indian internet landscape. Our idea of innovation is to look at the hottest 50 websites out there in the west, pull elements from each of them and promise to do everything, including an unconditional end to global warming, and hope nobody notices that beyond the stellar messaging (email for body builders, email for stupid people, anyone?) the product is the same wine in the same bottle.

Of course, a lot of Indian internet companies are profitable and in a good shape and at least in theory that should drive innovation across the board. But we seem to be happy to wait for the next big thing to fall from the western landscape, lap it up, spit it out and hope the audience here picks it up and voilà, you have a shortcut to near-instant profit. The strangest thing is that even here where there is hardly a decent business model online beyond the traditional banner spots, you get to hear almost endlessly about Web 2.0 and the like from within and outside the trade almost like it is the gospel that fell straight off the money tree.

What nobody will tell you is that most Web 2.0 companies in India today are neither successful nor feasible in both the long and the short run, including the latest string of Ruby on Rails-powered monstrosities, which often don’t have user bases that don’t extend beyond the developer’s immediate family and a string of former and current lovers. From that point of view, the ‘copy from west and paste here in the east’ routine may sound like a good and easy idea, but it is a malaise that will end up leaving us behind like cheap clattering Chinese imitations before soon. I think someone has to wake up, ground some good beans, brew some strong stuff and smell a whole lot of it.

Now to the product at hand: Brijj

On the surface, Brijj picks out the best of Facebook in terms of presentation (the squeaky clean lines, funky Javascript, Ajax etc) and marries it with the best of Linkedin (references, plug ins for Outlook, Outlook Express etc). But that’s where the similarity and the theory ends. Neither does Brijj have the stupendously awe-inspiring backend data wizardry that is the hallmark of Facebook, nor does it have the professional-friendly feel of Linkedin. For existing users of people networks, the lack of what are considered as standard features also stick out like a sore thumb.

For example, there is absolutely no granular privacy settings in terms of who gets to see what and how much. I am assuming that a lot of it is controlled by who you are a friend of and who you are not a friend of, but there’s hardly any easy way to figure it out. Beyond a few clicks and a handful of links, there is nothing to discover about the website. There is just no surprise factor. It looks and feels like a low cost carrier and the killer blow comes in when you see the best done page: product comparison — where you get to see what the different membership options are. And that is a dead giveaway of the shortcut to profit route, when you are crystal clear about your pricing options and are relatively clueless about the rest of the website.

On the technical front, the site is a bit rough around the edges. The server signature is the standard “NWS” or Naukri Web Server, which is actually Apache under the hood, running PHP and possibly one of the MVC frameworks. There are some duplicate meta and doctype declarations all over the place (UTF-8 or iso-8859-1? Make up your mind!), possibly due to some unfortunate soul including a default editor template in some controller file. There is almost certainly only a limited amount of QA done on it (other than a basic copy check) and page titles and meta tags are the same all over the place. And at least in the logged in home page, there is an invisible DIV with a certain Sonal Mehta’s (apparently, an HR manager at Infy) email and phone number hard coded into it.

So what’s the verdict? I am afraid unless Info Edge puts some real hard work into it and revises/refreshes the product, this will end up in the dustbin before soon. In any case, I can imagine the company having real pressure on it to diversify, especially after their successful listing. With 99acres and other properties not doing too well and still being huge cost points that gnaw away at Naukri’s healthy constitution, this won’t come as a relief in breaking the one hit wonder curse. Positioning-wise, I can’t see too many existing users moving over to this. The switching costs are way too high and the features are way too less and honestly, it all feels a bit too amateurish.

Info Edge is also making critical mistakes like not having a common registration database among its properties. Who on earth wants to maintain yet another login in an already troubled world of products where there is almost nothing that goes by the name of interoperability. I am assuming that at some point Info Edge will roll into Brijj, the muscle of Naukri’s database, but they have again erred gravely by not having it on from day one. It would have stood out as a major differentiator to any other similar product and this is again made considerably difficult because of users having to maintain two different identities on Naukri and Brijj.

Written by shyam

August 9, 2007 at 8:33 pm

21 Responses

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  1. Good review…it’s very first time I have come across an open review of a Indian website on international standards.
    I am still counting on when people will start really innovating.

    Lalit Shandilya

    August 10, 2007 at 6:29 am

  2. Hi Shyam

    Thanks for taking the time off and doing a detailed review of brijj.com

    The site is in Beta as you can see on the home page and is still going through the final stages of testing and stabilisation. We have done extensive QA and we do have a pretty good QA and testing competence within the company.

    We have gone live with the basic feature set that we felt was essential to make a start.

    There is an ambitious product enhancement agenda on the anvil for Brijj and there will be improvements on an ongoing basis – some of which will be visible to the user and some that wont be.

    Granular privacy settings are in the pipeline and so are many other features which we would not like to announce at the moment.

    Yes pricing options are clearly communicated however we do not expect revenue anytime soon.

    What a lot of people dont realise is that the bulk of the value of a networking site lies in two things :

    1. How well the network is populated and by whom

    2. How easy it is to find people who are relevant to you

    Now on both these we felt there was a gap in what is needed in India and what the current international sites are providing.

    What we have done is built in a friend finding engine that we believe is far superior in the Indian context than that of any international site. So once the network is populated we will be able to recommend many more people you would want to connect to than would a comparable international site with the same number of people registered from India. This would enhance the value of the network.

    This capability is currently not apparent since the network population is low but it will make itself felt in a few months time hopefully.

    As far as populating the network is concerned most international professional networking sites don’t currently have a very large registered user base from India – although this is growing. We feel that we have the wherewithal to catch up in this area.

    So we had two choices – delay launch by four to six months and build a Taj Mahal and then go to market with all the bells and whistles. Or else build the essential feature set while ensuring the core proposition of a larger network population and a superior friend finding capability are met.

    On balance we decided to go for speed to market. We believe we have made the correct choice.

    Time will tell whether we were right or wrong.

    Sanjeev

    Sanjeev Bikhchandani

    August 10, 2007 at 11:08 am

  3. Good thoughts!

    Actually, (ab)using the user base of Naukri could have helped them. (And they could have morphed asknaukri to just another feature of brijj.)

    Much of these copy-pasted services have very little Indian flavour unlike international clones of other popular services. Wonder when this party will end.

    Shashi

    August 10, 2007 at 11:35 am

  4. Sanjeev,

    Thanks for responding here. I wish more top level execs would be as transparent not limited to commenting on blogs, but also on numbers etc. Thankfully, you are not listed on the daq, thus not having to fear the sock of the SOX, but I do appreciate it a lot.

    Like I said, I’d been much harsher initially, but launching products that don’t have much of a use case or products that are half baked is an industry-wide phenomenon in India. I’m pointing fingers at everyone and not just at Info Edge. We have to innovate and do things better.

    Is time to market such a major factor? I don’t think so, at least not in terms of going live a couple of months down the line with a compelling enough/different enough feature list. Right now, unless you hit the market with a major marketing initiative, there is little traction you’ll get with it and you know the kind of pressure the existing marketing initiatives are putting on your bottom line with regards to 99acres and other new products. Even good marketing can’t hold up a sparsely featured product in a tough market place for too long.

    Of course, there is large bit of space available for all things old that are done with an Indian flavour. But reeking of Indianness alone will not ensure that it will work if the features are not there and I don’t know how reasonable it is to tell users: “listen, this does not look too good right now, but the moment we hit ‘n’ number of users, hidden features will suddenly show up, till then we won’t amount to much.” What exactly is the threshold it needs to cross to be effective and how is a user to know what that number is going to be?

    You’ve missed a point in elaborating on the value of a networking site, that it also depends on the quality of people who are in there. A network that has a lot of influencers, top level executives and recruiters will always have a value that’s better than one that has a lot of people from the lower end of the hierarchy. Linkedin has stolen a march on almost everyone on that count and as I’d mentioned, switching costs (basically recreating the network) will prevent a lot of people from moving across. Without that group of people, you’ll be stuck with a slightly improved version of Orkut. It will have the masses, but will it have the value? I doubt it.

    One of the disappointments in Brijj is that your company has the potential to deliver so much more. You have some pretty smart young chaps in your labs who are fiddling with cutting edge tech and none of that is seen right now in the product. Naukri is already sitting on a goldmine of data in terms of user interaction, patterns and I can bet my bottom dollar that you have the tools inhouse to mine and extract relevant data. So it is not like you don’t know how to build a Taj Mahal or that you don’t have the tools to build one.

    I have a feeling the product was rushed due to a lot of the competition being rumoured to be entering the same space and as you said, only time will tell.

    All the best with it.

    shyam

    August 10, 2007 at 12:12 pm

  5. Shyam,

    All technology/product purists would agree with you when you say that speed to market is not important.

    I am not sure how many successful companies would though.

    At naukri we are the first to admit that in February 2000 when Jobsahead launched it was vastly superior to naukri on UI, design, product features and the technology platform.

    But naukri had greater brand equity and aggregation – of traffic, clients, jobs, response and everything else that counted. Maybe this was for historical reasons or maybe we were prioritising what mattered more at that stage of evolution of the market – sometimes by accident and sometimes by design.

    We had early mover advantage and we did a good job of defending that advantage on aggregation in the two or three years that it took for us to to catch up on product and technology.

    In early stages of product category evolution on the Internet aggregation will beat bells and whistles hollow – so long as the core required features are there. You can have all the extra features you can imagine but without aggregation they will come to naught. That is the reality although a passionate product / technology purist will not like to hear it.

    I have a really fancy mobile phone. It has a hundred features. I dont even know all of them. I just use five – the Phone, PDA, SMS, Solitaire and email. Till three months ago I did not use email on my mobile.

    We researched the market and talked to users of networking sites to understand the features they really used.

    We also understood what the need gaps and opportunities were.

    We believe we have gone with an offering that has a good chance of succeeding. It is not half baked as you have described it. Our recommendation engine will create more connections than other offerings out there. But only after a certain level of aggregation. We have thought it through thoroughly. Our architecture is scalable.

    The bells and whistles will come – but a little later. They will be the kind that will satisfy the purists.

    Speed to market is essential for aggregation. We don’t want the international sites to gain on aggregation while we incorporate all the less used features.

    As regards to your observation about 99acres and Jeevansathi – we have said publicly (read the transcript of our analyst calls at http://www.infoedge.in) that if all goes as per plan in Jeevansathi we should be in a position by March 2008 where we could make a profit going forward if we wanted to. We may choose not to if we want to go for even higher growth. In 99acres we hope to be in this position by March 2009.

    Both 99acres and Jeevansathi are progressing well. We are satisfied.

    But like I said earlier on all the above – time will tell.

    Sanjeev

    PS. We do disclose numbers that we believe are truthful and are important for the public to know. You can see them in our IPO prospectus and also in all subsequents announcements at infoedge.in

    Sanjeev Bikhchandani

    August 10, 2007 at 2:16 pm

  6. Great article Shyam. I particularly liked ur quote “copy from west and paste in the east”.

    But I don’t expect any innovation in web2.0 space in India any soon.

    Reasons
    i) India’s internet population is very very less when compared to China and U.S. And those who use internet merely check there E-mails. Yes, I agree the iPopulation is growing day by day. But still it would take some time

    ii) I believe we’re very poor at taking risks.

    Hope this will change soon

    satjaya

    August 10, 2007 at 5:56 pm

  7. >> As far as populating the network is concerned most international professional
    >> networking sites don’t currently have a very large registered user base from India –
    >> although this is growing.
    at an astonishing rate! Read the content sutra story that says “Facebook’s India Visitors More Than Triple Over 6 Months”
    http://tinyurl.com/2d9htw

    >> So we had two choices – delay launch by four to six months and build a Taj Mahal
    >> and then go to market with all the bells and whistles. Or else build the essential feature
    >> set while ensuring the core proposition of a larger network population

    Actually you have a third option that is adopted by most of the internet companies in India. Don’t build a perfect product, don’t build the essential feature set either, but go to market with all the bells and whistles. Haven’t you seen the Indiatimes mail ads on TV and newspapers? Or what about zapak mail / game?

    I liked briji. It’s like breathing fresh air at Marine drive after stepping out of a crowded Mumbai train. One of my not so tech savy friend was embarrassed when hi5 sent invites to all of the contacts in her gmail account. Obviously she must have clicked on “Continue” when all the gmail contacts were listed with all of them already checked! One may argue that it is the user’s mistake, but the hi5 “user interface” does not make it explicitly clear about what exactly is it going to do next. By using such tricks they shoot up the numbers and then approach VC’s who will simply multiply X dollars to the number of users!

    briji is more like linkedin and it does address that niche segment of market very well.

    Shantanu Oak

    August 11, 2007 at 6:27 am

  8. Funny that someone working for Web18 has an opinion on profitability and sustainability when the only people making money out of their own venture are Akamai.

    Most of your services are archaic and useless. Besides Ibnlive, which burns a ton of money (yes…PCWorld NO.1, we get the point (ps. there is noone else around) ) and actually does serve a function of timely breaking vid news, all and including other offerings (indiwo LOL) rely on banner ads to keep the flour mill grinding (or bubbling).

    In terms of one hit wonders, even Google is one with the exception of home brewed gmail and gradually acquired firms which had installed bases whose traffic it could make monetary sense of through a common transaction platform.

    Have blog will talk? You are so stupid that you actually think
    “some duplicate meta and doctype declarations all over the place” has a direct effect on profitability and Sanjeev is actually reverting (Listen, we are all ok OK? Pls buy Stock.)

    Robert

    August 11, 2007 at 6:57 am

  9. Dear Sanjeev,

    It is nice to be considered a tech/product purist for a change while the major gripe for people who’ve worked with me has almost always been the opposite.

    I’m not saying speed to market is not important. What I said was, if it would have taken you a couple more of months, there is not much by means of traction you are going to lose out on and those additional and obvious features would probably have given you a much better retention/usage rate than rushing a product to the market which has only the bare essentials on it. And trust me, this is not rocket science, it is still a handful of PHP scripts with weightage given to the set variables stored in a DB.

    I don’t think you can make a straight comparison between what happened to Naukri and Jobsahead in the early years to a market/product segment like this. There are proper benchmarks for a successful closure on a job website, with a networking site there is not much you can lean on, unless you take the few options that are given during sign up time as an absolute signal of intent by the user. Even then, how do you rank if the user’s reason number one is more important than reason number two?

    I have a major major gripe against personal use driven development, which has led to the ruin of a lot of decent products, where product heads think that releasing ‘x’ or ‘y’ feature that they’ve discovered day before yesterday will change the face of the internet, without bothering to ask how many other people are using it.

    I’ll have to take your word for it when you say you’ve done your homework well and you know exactly what/who you are aiming for. Let us give it some time and see how well it does, Once again, all the best.

    The 99acres and JS numbers look interesting, but I don’t think this is the right forum to address it and I am not exactly an accounting whiz or even close to it. Will let that be for some other day.

    And thanks once again for answering the questions.

    shyam

    August 11, 2007 at 7:32 am

  10. satjaya,

    Thanks. Yes, I do agree with you that penetration/use is still very low for us and will take a while (2-5 years at the current stalemate?) before it is worth a lot. If you’ve seen a lot of the business plans of major portals, you’ll see that we are very very good at risks.

    Robert,

    Now, this is a tough one. I could answer your questions, but the fact is that I am not authorised to speak on behalf of Web18 and I am not pretending to speak on their behalf either in the blog. In fact, I do make it more than adequately clear that these are my personal opinions and nothing more.

    Google has a business/product model that’s very different from other companies, so don’t discount it. A lot of their products need not be segment leaders for them, all those products help them profile the user better, leading to better quality ads on the other pages, helping them earn more money, while we keep thinking that they don’t do much for them.

    Of course, the blog is here because I want to talk :) But the doctype point was made about the technical part and I don’t think I’ve said that affects profitability (valid (X)HTML being tied to profits is a nice dream, mind you).

    Thanks.

    shyam

    August 11, 2007 at 7:48 am

  11. Comments on the site is premature and ahead of its full blown development, its like asking Nandan Nilekini/Gopalkrishnan (Infosys )how they are going to manage rupee appreciation. Guys grow up dont ask stupid questions, these guys have been the curve and seen it before many times over in the past – Do you really know how many levers they have and their business plans ? Ofcousre not let them do their job they have done it before , they may suceed or may not as sanjeev said only time will tell. Respect the management that publicly willing to debat on this , can you name me single corporate can willing . Least you guys can do is go and read the transcript of last few quarter in naukri site and form your opinion after that . Naukri has been consistant in its view about rest of the portals being in build up stage and not being singularly focussed on profitability.

    One of the very company to leverage the advantage of net in its business model and creat revenue out of that.

    equityman

    August 11, 2007 at 9:01 am

  12. equityman,

    Do criticize what’s been written here for all you like but do spare me and the others personal comments like “grow up” and trying to ask others what to ask or what not to. I am glad that you are happy with Info Edge and that you do trust them, but do allow others to make up their own minds.

    About your points: If you did read the transcript you’ll see that rupee appreciation does feature quite prominently in it. Everyone looks at worse case scenarios and just because something is not under your control does not mean you don’t plan for it.

    I have said it before and I’ll say it again, I have tremendous respect for what Sanjeev and his company has achieved, if it was not for that I’d not even have bothered writing it if it was a Times Internet or even Rediff. The fact that Sanjeev himself has gone to great lengths to counter my perceptions has only increased it a lot more. But please do not equate disagreement with disrespect and more importantly, I don’t think either you me should try our hands at mind reading.

    On the last point, there is very little in terms of leverage that you speak of on the net these days. Having a successful product ‘a’ does not mean that your new product ‘b’ will explode in terms of usage, no matter how much you push at it. It might get a little bit of a bootstrap from the sister product, but otherwise every product is on its own the market these days and recent history is littered with examples of how it has worked: Google Videos, Myspace News, Yahoo 360 etc.

    shyam

    August 11, 2007 at 9:41 am

  13. Shyam, Robert, Shantanu and Equityman

    Actually at Info Edge we are constantly debating and discussing internally so we dont mind being criticised on blogs and we actually enjoy engaging in discussion with people who disagree with us. We are a pretty argumentative company and internally there is a culture of dissent. The one thing that you wont get penalised for at Info Edge is disagreeing with your boss.

    So if Shyam’s post slams our strategy or the Brijj feature set, it’s good because already as a result of this discussion our product team has come out with two new feature ideas which are under consideration.

    So guys – I don’t think anyone including Shyam is stepping out of line by expressing his opinion. It’s fine. We like to listen and we like to engage.

    We dont have a business plan for Brijj just yet. We do have milestones – for network population and expansion, for connections within the network and for feature enhancement.

    We know that if we get between four and six lakh people registered on the site in the next nine odd months we would have hit a sweet spot from where network growth could hit a positive spiral that is self sustaining.

    The debate is whether we should have waited another few months before launch or is the current feature set right to achieve this milestone.

    The call we took was that if we delay our launch by a few months it is possible that the other networking sites would have established a user base in India which was large enough to make it harder for us to catch up.

    The flip side which is what Shyam is articulating is that without the additional features we will not get the desired levels of registered users anyway.

    We could be wrong but I suspect when the dust settles, in hindsight, we will turn out to have been more right than wrong.

    Shyam – thanks for your good wishes.

    Sanjeev

    Sanjeev Bikhchandani

    August 11, 2007 at 11:26 am

  14. I am giving below a comment that I had posted on Contentsutra this morning

    Hi

    I have been reading the various posts and comments about brijj.com on all the blogs – fatalerror, contentsutra, watblog, alootechie etc. with considerable interest.

    My favourite comment is the one from Nisha on Alootechie saying that this site cannot be from Info Edge because the interfaces are not cluttered enough. Be patient Nisha – give us time and we will clutter up this one as well. After all this is only a Beta.

    Lots of interesting issues have come up. I would like to throw in my two bits.

    Why have we launched this site?
    We launched because it made sense to do so. Sooner rather than later.
    It fits well with our other sites. We are in the business of enabling handshakes – all our sites do that. We charge money for the prospect of enabling a successful handshake. Consummation of the handshake into a transaction is self service and takes place offline. Content on all our sites is user generated (resume’s, jobs, matrimonial profiles, real estate listings) with the exception of asknaukri which will also move more towards that direction in the coming months (strange how an alleged Web 2.0 feature like UGC was integral to naukri and many other sites as far back as ten years ago) . A networking site possesses all these characteristics of our other sites. We know how to run those businesses. We feel at least some of that knowledge can be useful here.

    What will people use the site for?
    You are missing the point if you think this is a recruitment site or a site to find passive job seekers. That’s what you think the site is for if you evaluate it only from the naukri prism. The site can be used to connect with people for many things – sales leads, career guidance, employer evaluation by job seekers, reference checking, finding a vendor, meeting people with common interests, travel advice, problem solving, product recommendations, demand aggregation, finding old friends and acquaintainces – whatever you need to connect with people for you can do on this or for that matter another networking site.
    When was the last time you wanted to do something and you sought out advice or could have done with some or tried to find a contact somewhere or badly needed one. I face half a dozen such situations every week where I feel the need and cant fulfill it. And my friends say I am incredibly well networked.
    Of all countries India runs on Jaan Pehchaan.
    Sure Brijj may also help recruiters find passive job seekers. And from the naukri viewpoint that will be a useful thing. But that is only a very thin slice of the pie.

    What was the effort that went into building the Beta version?
    We put together a team around nine months ago and operated in stealth mode till now. Sure there were leaks in a couple of places but no details came out. In public we talked about our other projects – career guidance, education etc. but kept mum on this one till the last analyst call. The Brijj team studied over forty networking sites internationally – what were the features, what was the privacy policy, what was the information being captured, who was visiting these sites, what were they doing there, what could the possible revenue models be, who was getting what kind of traction, how smart was the recommendation engine, what kind of communities were being formed, was it a hang out kind of site or was it for passive networking and so on. We then spoke to Indian users of the various networking sites to understand their perceptions, usage, needs, satisfaction levels and need gaps, what makes them switch etc. We also spoke to non users and understood their mind. It was only after three to four months of this did we begin to narrow down on our target user and what features the offering should have. And then we got down to execution. The engineering feat in building architecture that’s stable and scalable for a networking site that if it succeeds can grow exponentially is considerable.

    I have two or three more things to say but have to rush to office. Will do so later today or tomm.

    Sanjeev

    Sanjeev Bikhchandani

    August 11, 2007 at 11:30 am

  15. Just one comment…

    Is the 6 lakh member mark in next 9 months realistic?

    Also, this biz model is a make or break model. Its not like a video site, or a job site, or a real estate site, or a travel portal – where you can make money even if the site is doing moderately well. So, for example in a job site – there is some justification in spending more and more marketing money to keep pushing growth … in this model … you wont know if your money is going to give returns until you are very very late in the piece… at which point its a make or break. You wont make mush cash of this model – until it reaches the tipping point – and to get there you will have to burn a lot – not being the first mover and to play catchup. So, what I am trying to say – is that as far as investment risk goes – this is HIGHLY risky. Its not a no-brainer like a job site, real estate or travel portal (which, in my opinion would’ve been a better initiative to setup, for info edge).

    Vishal L

    August 13, 2007 at 6:05 am

  16. The problem with any start up business is that predictability is poor.

    In the year 2000 when we raised money from ICICI Venture we had given them a 5 year projection of financials in our business plan. In the fifth year (2005-06) we had projected revenue of Rs. 12 crs (if I remember correctly). We actually did Rs. 84 crs (we were off by 7x).

    At that stage if you had told us that we would do Rs. 147 crs six years later we would have wondered what you had been smoking.

    So is 6 lakh registrations within 9 months realistic? The most honest answer to that question is “We don’t know for sure”.

    We will get a better fix on it when we put our toe into the water and actually start promoting the site once it stabilises and all servers are running fine and can take the load of a ramp up.

    It’s a judgement call. Right now we would say 6 lakhs in 9 months is doable. But the market will tell us what the truth is. And markets frequently spring surprises – both pleasant and unpleasant.

    Is it a winner take all market – I am not so sure. The same logic may be applied to job sites. Yet Monster and Timesjobs survive and seem sustainable.

    So long as Monster and Timesjobs are able to create some differentiated value (i.e. they have some CVs that naukri does not have) they will get customers. Many of our clients for this reason use more than one job site. Should their CV database become a subset of ours then they would be challenged.

    Similarly so long as one network is not a subset of another both can survive and possibly thrive.

    Actually I am not sure launching a job site or a real estate site or a travel site today is a no brainer. It appears a no brainer in hindsight to have launched these a few years ago. Right through the meltdown when dotcoms were untouchables it was called stupid. But those who persisted are in the positions they are today because they saw something others did not or because like us they were simply stubborn.

    Many people say first mover advantage or early mover advantage is dead on the Internet. Actually it depends what you do with that advantage. You could use it well or you could fritter it away.

    The best kept secret of many market leaders is first mover or early mover. Remember this.

    Tx

    Sanjeev

    Sanjeev Bikhchandani

    August 14, 2007 at 1:42 am

  17. Sanjeev,
    I must admit that despite you featuring the site in our discussion on Friday, I haven’t ‘registered’ as yet. Maybe I will if I feel like adding another network. But I must say, it is great to see the level of discussion over at SS’ blog, great that you guys are being so proactive in discussing the site/service here. I honestly wish some other companies were so open in discussing services/products they launched online. Whether brijj does well or not, I would think that your commenting here in itself is fascinating.

    Shaym,
    Dude, you’re not a techie purist??? Please. Honestly. Aur Kimi ka kya hoga re?

    Kushan

    August 14, 2007 at 10:55 am

  18. Sanjeev

    I have seen brijj and I think it is a defensive approach. You must have noticed how linkedin ate into the traffic of Monster (the alexa comparison between linkedin and monster for 3 years gives a clear picture of what I am talking about)

    So you have expected the same scene in India and launched to safegaurd naukri and created a linkedin replica.

    And according to alexa traffic, you have got good enough traffic too (thanx to banners running on all 3 of your sites). This way, you are pushing your website on money and not on the value that it creates or it might create. A kind of monopoziling things…

    One of my friend launched a website http://www.saleraja.com recently and despite being a truly innovative idea and getting rare reviews, it has not really caught up.

    The only thing I am trying to say is that it is not an equal opportunity market anymore.

    Your views awaited, Sanjeev

    Prateek

    September 27, 2007 at 11:24 am

  19. […] December 26, 2007 It has been a while since we went over the entire social networking fracas vis-a-vis Brijj, which is Infoedge’s social networking product. At that point in time the […]

  20. 6 months have gone by and i believe Brijj must have achieved that 6 lakh count. How is definitely a big & uncomfortable question. Purely on curiosity I went and checked my college presence in BriJJ, and it gave a good number, 3236 to be precise. But strangely in the search results no member was connected to anyway. What kind of social networking it is?? Or finally Info Edge’s technology wizards have found out way to transfer naukri’s data in Brijj.

    I met Sanjeev in TiE summit last December. He seems to be a very nice and well mannered guy :-).
    He was talking about some portal for connecting educator’s & learners. Is there any news on it?

    Satish Sharma

    April 6, 2008 at 1:04 am

  21. Satish,

    Just don’t see the use case for Brijj. Other Infoedge products: the company seems to have gone VERY quiet of late. But yes, Sanjeev seems to be a very nice chap.

    shyam

    April 6, 2008 at 7:13 am


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