A year ago Christchurch's Michael Green headed off to Start-Up Chile to grow his goal-setting social network, Day Zero Project – the first Kiwi to be accepted. Now Chile's burgeoning entrepreneurial scene is set to welcome Aucklander Pravin Daryani.
Daryani is the sole New Zealander in the fifth intake of Start-Up Chile, one of 101 winning entries picked from 1509 companies.
The 24-year-old and his co-founder Lena Steinmeier will go to Chile to work on ContentForest for six months starting mid-October. They will receive US$40,000 of equity-free seed capital and access to local financial and social network as part of the Start-Up Chile programme.
ContentForest is a profile-based platform that connects content creators with publishers who need content, set to launch later this year. He says ContentForest helps experts to promote themselves and increase their exposure as well as allowing publications to crowdsource content and implement content marketing strategies on their own.
Before building marketing agency ApeForest, which formed the base of his new business, ContentForest, Daryani dabbled in several business ventures, often spending 14 hours a day in front of the computer.
The long hours eventually paid off, however – today Daryani and his team handle the marketing operations of several multi-million dollar companies.
“Content is king when it comes to marketing, so ApeForest provided this service to its clients as well. While doing so manually, I realised we can only help so many people and this gave rise to my new startup ContentForest. The goal is to provide the same value to millions, so our whole focus is on productising.”
He arrived in New Zealand four years ago after growing up in India and going to work full-time at 16.
Working in jobs he "absolutely hated" drove him to strike out on his own.
“Listening to authors like Napoleon Hill, Tony Robbins, Seth Godin, Wayne Dyer and Dan Kennedy definitely kept me going and eventually led to the formation of ApeForest.”
Yet he says he never envisioned entering the marketing industry.
“ I was a very introverted kid and in the early days my hands started shaking heavily when I went for business meetings," he says.