7 questions with this CA who quit the Big 4 to run a consulting firm in the sandy shores Goa

Even as a proud Goan, Asutosh Kharangate has a slightly different opinion about the Susegad concept. “It is supposed to mean lazy but I don’t believe that’s the case”, he adds. The term originates from the Portuguese word ‘sossagado’, which means a laid-back attitude. This term has been associated with the Goan people since the time of Portuguese territory.

Ashutosh has always dreamt of a career that would be different from a typical CA role which involves auditing and taxation. For this, he decided to move out of Goa and settle in Mumbai. Fortunately, he was able to find a job at one of the Big Four MNCs, PwC, as a Senior Associate. He further says, “I came to know about a process called ‘Due Diligence’ which was never really heard of ever before. It was an interesting concept for me knowing that it has to do with Financial checks of a company”.

 

About MARC

Interest in ‘Due Diligence’

Even as a proud Goan, Asutosh Kharangate has a slightly different opinion about the Susegad concept. “It is supposed to mean lazy but I don’t believe that’s the case”, he adds. The term originates from the Portuguese word ‘sossagado’, which means a laid-back attitude. This term has been associated with the Goan people since the time of Portuguese territory.

Ashutosh has always dreamt of a career that would be different from a typical CA role which involves auditing and taxation. For this, he decided to move out of Goa and settle in Mumbai. Fortunately, he was able to find a job at one of the Big Four MNCs, PwC, as a Senior Associate. He further says, “I came to know about a process called ‘Due Diligence’ which was never really heard of ever before. It was an interesting concept for me knowing that it has to do with Financial checks of a company”.

After researching about Due Diligence, Ashutosh was convinced that it was something he was truly interested in. He laughingly adds, “I honestly hated the place (Mumbai) but loved the job”.

Challenges faced running a CA Firm in Goa

 

After his successful stint at PwC where he learned more about the process, he decided to return back to Goa and start his own company.

Starting a Business Advisory Firm in Goa

In Goa, Ashutosh decided to start his own Due Diligence and Business Advisory firm. This, of course, was not an easy task. Given the nature of CA and its limited scope in Goa, Ashutosh had to face a lot of challenges to become a successful entrepreneur. He was even ridiculed by his friends who questioned his business idea.

Goa was not ready for Business Advisory services but Ashutosh was persistent in offering the place what it lacked. So, on 1st August 2010, he finally launched his firm, Mangal Analytics and Research Consulting Pvt Ltd (MARC). As a form of dedication, he named it after his mother whom he lost while he was still working in Mumbai. Ashutosh had promised his mother that he would soon return to Goa and as a devoted son, he fulfilled his promises.

Mistakes you made which could have been avoided

 

After a successful start to his firm, Ashutosh and his team are now working on three lines of services:

  • Mergers and Acquisitions: helping companies prepare project reports concerning investments, valuation of companies, project feasibility studies, and market research.
  • Developing Marketing Strategies: primary research for startups to understand whether it’s worth stepping into a new opportunity, product, service, or even new geography. Also, analyzing what kind of revenue that opportunity can generate, the profitability, etc., and developing marketing strategies accordingly.
  • Financial Analytics: analyzing the performance of an on-going process or project on behalf of a company and working on SOPs.

Challenges Ahead

When asked about the challenges he had to face while running a Business Advisory firm in Goa, Ashutosh strongly insinuated that “it’s a lack of awareness”.

“I felt it was on me to make the market understand what was the need of these things.” (H2)

With his experience in setting up his firm, he also mentions that there was a lack of knowledge about the price points at which Due Diligence services could work. Ashutosh adds, “I knew that I couldn’t survive solely on Due Diligence for long”. Therefore, at the same time, he started experimenting with profitability analysis where he analyzed the accounts, finances, commercials, and taxes for his clients. Soon after, the word spread about his business with recommendations from his satisfied clients.

MARC has now grown to a team of 30 finance enthusiasts and has a client size of more than 250 businesses across the globe! (H2)

Despite the oppositions and challenges, Ashutosh never thought about it as something which can’t be done. He always believed that by having faith in oneself and persevering through all the hurdles, success can be a guaranteed result.

(heading, H2)

Ashutosh explains, “there is no second to quality. If you know your game well and can deliver quality, I am sure things pick up from there.” (quote)

Mistakes as an Entrepreneur

Everyone makes mistakes along the way. But it is important to learn from them so that you never commit the same mistakes again. Ashutosh has a similar view on this. He describes entrepreneurship as a “learning journey”.

Although MARC took off early and people were receptive to the concept, Ashutosh says, “I am still not good in my marketing abilities, to be frank.” He believes that he could have done a better job at business development by adopting a sustainable marketing strategy in the initial stages

Nevertheless, Ashutosh is quite happy with how the business has progressed over time. However, there are times even today, when people say that they never thought they would find Due Diligence services in a place like Goa. Ashutosh, is of course, adamant about changing this outlook and has been working on the right track.

As a fresh out of college graduate, you have a mindset of “do good work, then you will get the check, and people will praise you,” Ashutosh explains. But, this is far from reality and you learn as you grow is what he likes to believe.

“All these learnings happen over a period of time which makes you wiser.”

If given an opportunuty to start all over what would you do differently

 

Advice for young CAs who want to work in Goa

In a territory like Goa, one has to understand where the gap is in the market. Ashutosh also comments on the lack of perseverance that he sees in most youngsters. “There is no substitute for that in terms of being an entrepreneur”, he says.

Advice for young professionals in Goa

While we have several suggestions and guidance from Finance professionals, we wanted to specifically ask Ashutosh how one can establish their consultancy firm in Goa. Here’s what he has to say:

 

 

 

Impact of pandemic on your business

 

“You can’t expect to sit in your nice AC office and expect to grow. You have to break your back, you have to strive hard. There will be ups and downs. One day you would feel like the best of employees, have the greatest of clients, and cash flow would look fantastic. But the next day, you would see everything has gone down−the landlord gives you notice, two of your top clients have left, your team members have just left. Therefore, I strongly recommend three things 1) perseverance, 2) being flexible, 3) building relationships with clients.”

Also Read

How this CA quit his Big 4 job & against all odds built a thriving due diligence firm in the sandy shores of Goa

Also Read

How serial innovator CA Shailesh took Haribhakti & Co, from a 20 to 1000 member team

To wrap up, have patience and understand the dynamics of the market. Ashutosh, and we at The Finance Story, believe that once you implement these things, no one can stop you from succeeding!

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