Amit Singhi and Anand Prasad would frequent the same fitness centre, do the same exercises and ate the same kind of food. But Prasad ended up losing 8 kg, while Singhi gained 3 kg. Curious, the friends researched the cause of the difference in outcome, which is when they stumbled upon the fascinating world of genes.
Today, the duo, along with Sandip Agrawal, head Genecorp, a Mumbai-based start-up that conducts a DNA analysis listing preventive healthcare measures and recommends lifestyle and dietary changes. The idea is to educate people that a one-size-fits-all solution might not work for fitness, because genes play a major role in one’s physical development.
The start-up sources its DNA kits from a Canadian company, Oragene that can be booked through the Genecorp website or purchased directly during events organised by it. The client is required to deposit a saliva sample, which is then collected by the staff and sent for testing. It has tied up with three labs — two of which are based in India and one in Europe. A lucid report is given to the client within four weeks, and counselling sessions are held, where experts inform the client about possibilities of certain diseases. A diet and workout plan is accordingly chalked out. Over and above the report and counselling sessions, the customer also has option to top it up with a monthly subscription plan. A package of Rs.999 offers one a monthly diet plan whereas a Rs.1,999 plan provides a monthly diet as well as workout consultation plans.
While companies such as VLCC, Mapmygenome and The Gene Box also provide genetic tests and reports, Singhi claims Genecorp has more depth to his offerings. “Our focus is not to help you lose weight. The markers that we use are far more — for one disease, say diabetes, we check 10+ genes,” he says. While the other companies have nothing to offer after the report, Genecorp will continue to track the food and lifestyle of its users and give suggestions based on that through its app after its launch on September 5. Present in Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Surat and Bengaluru, Genecorp currently offers packages starting at Rs.7,000 that goes up to Rs.25,000.
Launched in January 2017 with an initial investment of around Rs 25 lakh, Genecorp has signed up over 60 customers so far. Its average ticket size currently is Rs.10,000-12,000, which fetches it a revenue of around Rs.7 lakh. According to Singhi, around 80% of their customers are senior executives or corporates in top positions opting for the all-inclusive test. The start-up hopes to rope in 1,500 customers with an average ticket size of Rs.12,000 by March 2018.