Nandoo founding team

Millennials prefer jobs that help boost their personal and professional skills. But when their work doesn’t allow that, it makes them dissatisfied and leads to stress.

A study by health insurance firm Cigna TKK reveals that nearly 95 per cent of Indian millennials admitted to being stressed primarily due to work. After logging long working hours, they find it hard to juggle work and personal life, finds this study.

“I have two sisters-in-law, one a professional and the other a student. They have no time to take care of their health or well-being when they get home,” says Mihir Shinde. “Their examples triggered me to think of developing a product that could help millennials enhance their mind and soul. This is when my friends and I decided to leverage our combined experiences and expertise in mobile app development and partnerships to create a unique wellness-based app.”

Nandoo, as the app is named, was launched in 2018 by Shinde and Yashika Shah, along with US citizens Han Lin and Jaime Cajamarca. With offices in New York and Mumbai, Nandoo helps Indian professionals enhance their mind, body and soul.

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“All of us have at least once felt left out in a small talk conversation at work or had this like crazy passive aggressive enmity with that one colleague and we want do everything in power to stand out. We decided to create Nandoo to help you beat all such enemies. We help our users in developing an uber-enhanced mind, body and soul in terms of wellness,” says Shinde.

This is how the app works. The Mind Wellness feature on the app gives you a breakdown of what’s going on in the world with a fresh, fun take to strengthen the mind. Articles covered in the past include “Why you can’t listen to Cardi Ben & Bruno bhai on Spotify India” or “Why Norway is the cleanest & dirtiest country in the world”.

On the other hand, Soul Wellness helps in controlling and steadying your breathing to manage stress and strengthen the soul. It is a relaxing feature that helps you guide your breathing in a simplified format.

Body Wellness means you consistently walk for 10 minutes every day and compete against other users on leaderboards. The app has small rewards associated to keep the motivation up.

“We are redefining wellness to fit into the modern routine of our Nandoo-ers and turn this experience into an actual lifestyle and community,” he says

But there are quite a few life coaches and motivators around the world. How would you find a space among the crowd?

“Well, we have several features that help us stand out. One is localisation. This means the app is catered to make a typical Indian millennial feel he/she is speaking with a friend. The way we write and present things on our app, it is all in Hinglish (Hindi + English). Our name is extremely Indian. Our competitors are so focused on coming across as a global brand that they lose their Indian essence and thus, connection with the Indian millennial diaspora,” he elaborates.

“Secondly we keep an extremely chill approach and vibe to wellness and health. This can be seen in everything we do — from our UI, UX, voice to even our name. On the other hand, our competitors are focused on the tactic of using shame to making members stick around and use their apps,” he adds.

Nandoo’s goal is to utilise the power of a mobile phone to motivate people to further enhance themselves. “While in the future we are looking into incorporating interesting coaches, right now we want you to get hooked to the idea of it is okay (& not self-indulgent) to think about your wellness first before anything else. This is a tough nut to crack because we have grown up with the mindset of “I will work till I am super tired and rest when I retire”. Well, guess what, if you don’t take care of yourself right now, you are most certainly not going to enjoy life – forget about retirement! If you think about it, we are using the YOLO model but for the good,” he Shinde says.

The app is targeting only individual professionals and has no plans to cater to corporates, he adds. “This is because we have a counter culture persona – as in, we are cutting through the crap to tell you the real deal and motivate you in the same way to become the best you. Partnering and working with corporates dilutes our messaging. This is of course a longer process to get Nandoo-ers hooked, but we are in this for the long run so we are more than happy & patient to play the long game.”

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According to Shinde, if Nandoo can reach the 50 per cent of the stressed out millennials — which is around 200 million –that itself is a huge market. At the moment, Nandoo has 283,000 users, of which 82 per cent came through word of mouth, he claims.

Self-funded so far, Nandoo will start looking for VC funding once it has hit the internal metrics that it has set internally.