Pranoti and Rishi Nagarkar : The people behind rotis at one touch.

 

A company which created the world’s first robot chapati maker is one of the success stories from start-up hot spot Block 71 in Ayer Rajah Crescent. It is also a good example of why it is important to promote entrepreneurship in Singapore.

In the English segment of his National Day Rally speech yesterday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong noted that entrepreneurs do not just create jobs and prosperity.

“With their resourcefulness and optimism, they give our society the confidence that ‘anything is possible’,” he said.

Zimplistic’s product, Rotimatic, has transformed the way the wholewheat unleavened flatbread can be made. “Put in flour, oil and water, press a button, and out comes fresh hot chapati and roti, one per minute. If you have made chapati, you know what hard work it is,” Mr Lee said.

If you’re looking for an example in good packaging, here’s one: Rotimatic. A simple but beautiful idea, Rotimatic is a machine that’ll help one make rotis at the click of a button. Rotimatic comes from Zimplistic, a venture founded by Singapore based Pranoti Nagarkar. .

Whoa! was the exact reaction when I had a look at the offering and glance over the “Why Rotis” section totally seems like a leaf from Apple’s book. The machine will have compartments for flour and water (no measurement required) and it’ll mix up the ingredients on its own and bake out rotis at the rate of one a minute.

 

Zimplistic is one of the 15 Singapore startups that has received grants totaling $6 million from Spring Singapore. Rotimatic also has an impressive board which will help to scale up the company. The major demand will come from South Asia and Indian expats living abroad.

There have been other companies who’ve made roti makers but all of them have been locally manufactured and distributed. Rotimatic is probably the first one to do it at scale and with internet as the primary means of promotion.

The device will be available commercially only in September 2013 but the amount of press they have received is significant and a lot of it has to be attributed to the presentation. Also, looking at the sector the venture is in, it is refreshing to see it getting funded. How they actually materialize the machine and how effective it is, is still open to speculation but many will surely be waiting to know it all pans up.

 

The Rotimatic was developed by Ms Pranoti Nagarkar, a mechanical engineer by training, and her husband Mr Rishi Israni, who is a software expert.

It uses patented artificial intelligence technology to measure and mix the correct ratio of flour and water in real time.

“It is our staple diet. I thought, we washed clothes by hands, then came the washing machine. Where’s the machine to make chapatis?” Ms Nagarkar told The Straits Times in an interview in 2014.

She spent $20,000 to create Rotimatic. A prototype won the national Start-Up Singapore competition in 2009, and the product was brought to market with the help of Spring Singapore and other investors along the way.

The Rotimatic was launched early last year, with nearly 8,500 units of the product selling out within a few days.

 

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One thought on “Pranoti and Rishi Nagarkar : The people behind rotis at one touch.

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