PulsePlay Digital

PulsePlay Digital

September 13, 202115 min read296



Why write this now?

  1. To thank our clients and brands for trusting us
  2. To reflect
  3. To document our journey
  4. To share our experiences with those planning to embark on their ownentrepreneurial journeys
  5. To connect and collaborate with like-minded start-ups and brands
  6. To connect and collaborate with influencers, though leaders, team members and potential candidates

Thank you and gratitude to our clients and brand teams for trusting PULSEPLAY DIGITAL

Thank you for trusting our start-up digital, social, media, performance, tech, content, creative team at PULSEPLAY DIGITAL serving you from the laps of Himalayas. We will continue to strive every day to earn your trust and do everything possible to make your brands succeed and dreams/goals become a reality. We are just getting started. You inspire us every step of the way to bring more value in all things we collaborate on. THANK YOU. This is only possible because of you. Our team exists to serve youbetter every single day.

February 2011A seed sown and a dream born

Shruti and I got married in Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, India in February 2011. Since the day we set foot in Dharamshala, with our Baraati (marriage procession) – friends and family from Pune to Dharamshala, we instantly fell in love with Dharamshala – it’s culture, it’s people and everything it has to offer. My (late) brother Raj, my brother Anup, Sujata (now Anup’s wife) and my sister Sangeet; on the wedding day, driving from Naddi to Dharamshala started discussing – won’t it be great to move here and live close to nature immersed in 5 elements? We all said yes, we must live in Dharamshala, some day.

Post marriage, Shruti and I left back for USA where I had been living and working for some time. Shruti got her visa done and we arrived at Provo, Utah. That story is for another day. We kept discussing and making plans of buying a plot of land and living in Dharamshala someday.


Shruti and I decided to move to Dubai, UAE. We will always remain grateful for the opportunities, workplace environment, family, friends, colleagues and people in Dubai, UAE.


Proximity between Dubai and India helped us in visiting India frequently. After a lot of search and due diligence we finally bought a plot of land in Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh. We remain grateful to Shruti’s father Mr. Umesh Thapa and mother Mrs. Sushma Thapa (my father and mother in-laws) for their constant support and encouragement in getting us the right plot of land. This is a big deal in India – buying a plot of land due to all the running around,legal formalities in title search report, especially when you are not based in India etc.


We had plans to build the resort on the land we had bought in Dharamshala. With Covid-19 news coming in, it was as if a sign from up above to postpone construction work. We waited. Shruti and Shanaya were in Dharamshala with Shanaya’s remote classes in progress. I was in Dubai working remotely from home.

Shruti, I and family started discussing what if we still stuck to our plans of permanently moving our base to Dharamshala and instead of building a resort, pivot to launching a digital services company alongside getting into organic farming from the beautiful Dharamshala. I spoke to my mentor and guide honorable and beloved Prof. (Col.) A. Balasubramanian, who gave his blessings and helped us weigh in the pros and cons and finally said yes – ‘Go ahead’. Prof. Bala Sir left for his heavenly abode on 20 th February 2021. I owe everything to beloved Bala Sir. I will share in a separate post, in detail how I first met Bala Sir and what positive life changing Bala Sir has had in my life.

So, I resigned, started to wind up and after serving a three months’ notice at my workplace, I finally moved to Dharamshala and 4 th November 2020. For those in India, this was the day for Karwa Chauth festivity. For those who may not be aware, in India, on this day, the wife fasts for the whole day, does austerities, and prays for the well-being, health, and long life of her husband. Shruti fasted the whole day and I was finally home, in India, after spending almost two decades or so outside of India.

We started working on the finer details for our company registration and launch. We also started experimenting with organic farming on the same plot of land and enjoyed harvesting of fresh organic onions, radish, and a few other vegetables. We had always wanted Shanaya to be involved with mother earth and nature. More on this experience of building a relationship with mother earth and nature later.

25 January 2021, Company Formation

We decided to incorporate a Private Limited company, which has it’s own set of Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA); other legal requirements in the India. This took a bit of time, and we finally registered our company – PULSEPLAY DIGITAL PRIVATE LIMITED on 25 th January 2021. For anyone who may be looking to set up a Private Limited company in India and looking for some tips, we will be glad to share.


Shruti and I didn’t have to look far for our first set of founding team members at PULSEPLAY DIGITAL. I had been speaking with my parents and my brother Anup and sister Sangeet. Anup agreed to join us and help set up the creative/ content/ production team. Anup brings 15+ years of experience in entrepreneurship, digital story telling – videos, corporate, documentaries, animation, and photography. In fact, Anup and his wife Sujata decided to support us fully by moving their base from Pune, Maharashtra, India to Dharamshala along with their beautiful daughter Samaira. Sujata also started helping with finance and recruiting functions. Serendipities galore – Shanaya and her cousin sister Samaira just loved each other’s company. Vlog for another day. Our family remains grateful to our parents – Mr. D.B. Rai and Mrs. Sukhmaya Rai for instilling in us the work ethic and enabling us to always dream big. Will share their inspiring journey – blog for another day.

We shortlisted a few candidates and one fine morning, Ranjeet Sharma, walked in for interview at our office. We aligned and in Ranjeet we got our tech expert leader for all things tech. Ranjeet brings 8+ years of full stack web, architecture global experience. Ranjeet started to work on our website and building out the tech team expansion plans.

Shruti suggested we visit one of the local Dharamshala graphics training Institute, from where we got in touch with Surya Chauhan. Anup interviewed Surya. Surya agreed to join. Anup and Surya then started to work on our logo, creative, brand voice, social calendar, etc.

29 April 2021 - We are open for business

The above video was released (We were a team of 5 at that time), our website was launched and we were open for business on 29th April 2021.

A few of our friends who were in the know, started referring us a few clients and thus started our work. Interesting experiences of working with the newly minted team and delivering on a few projects as a team. Our PulsePlay Digital’s website got delayed as we prioritized our clients’ business launches and digital mandate. Right thing to do. Anup and I travelled extensively for onsite brand- team, product shoots during the peak of Covid-19 in March and April 2021 to Pune, Delhi NCR, Agra, Etah, many locations in Uttar Pradesh – the heart of Bharat and India. We both got Covid-19 positive and came back to our base in Dharamshala and gave Shruti Covid-19. We quarantined ourselves. Anup took care of me literally – heat up the water, serve fresh herbal tea from our clients we had shot for and brought products for further photo video shoot – www.omcorganic.com , make Kadha, while we locked ourselves indoors – s and continued working through Covid with digital edits, corporate and brand digital story-telling edits, animation, etc. I must say, despite of being his brother and me being partial, he earned my respect and clients’ as well. Anup contributed sweat equity in the building of PULSEPLAY DIGITAL. We remain witness. Take a look at the documentary onsite, in the backdrop of the beautiful Taj Mahal in Agra, Uttar Pradesh, digital story telling – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oY0Q-W8q_yA. Ranjeet alone built the entire website d2c e-commerce enabled, integrated it with the payment gateway, integrated it with the shipping marketplace for d2c, we tested the e-commerce orders rigorously and got the d2c brand live. Surya did an awesome work helping Anup with all the graphics, creatives, content, etc. The OMC Organic team supported us through this entire process.Did we risk our lives – we perhaps did. We value integrity- we keep our word. That’s a blog for another day or perhaps a vlog.

Rishi Sippy joined Ranjeet’s team to help with tech. Rishi referred his college friend Sushant Katoch, who was happy to join. Meanwhile, shortlisting of candidates kept happening and we kept interviewing candidates.

Team from Himachal Pradesh vs. rest of India/World

Shruti is from Dharamshala, Himachal. I, Anup and Sujata grew up in Pune, but we’ve now moved lock, stock and barrel to Dharamshala. In the winter of February 2011, is when we first visited Dharamshala and saw the dream of living immersed in nature and five elements. The dream is now taking roots and bearing fruits. We have big dreams for PULSEPLAY DIGITAL team and teams’ families and the whole of Dharamshala community and ecosystem build.

For Ranjeet Sharma, Surya Chauhan, Rishi Sippy, and Sushant Katoch – Himachal Pradesh is native.

Our first preference is and always perhaps will be to grow our local community talent ecosystems with the prime reason being to stop the migration to cities.

While we looked at candidates locally, we had to bring in talent from anywhere across India who were willing to work from the laps of Himalayas. While many experienced candidates interested to leave the city madness and move to a serene natural environment – were sincerely looking to take up the roles offered, we as a startup could only manage to offer a package that wouldn’t be practical for them as it would mean taking a pay cut. But again, Dharamshala, living expenses cannot be compared to the city living expenses. For comparison one could rent a single room, kitchen, bath for Rs.4000 – Rs.5000 per month in Dharamshala compared to Rs.12000 – Rs.20000 rent per month depending upon the metro.

Here is a poll I ran to get a feel on LinkedIn

Aanchal Mahajan moved to Dharamshala from Delhi NCR and joined the team to help Anup and the creative team move forward on all things motion graphics, 3D animation and up our creative game.

Sougata Debnath moved to Dharamshala from Kolkata, West Bengal, a creative enthusiast who displayed great attitude and willingness to learn, join the team and help with creative and graphics.

Mr. Jayant Mendjogi agreed to lead the CX, CRM and Business Processes functions and bring his vast 30+ years of experience to partner with our start up and D2C clients’ brands for all things process efficiency.

We are starting to see – If you build it. They will come.

Burning Questions?

Three for now.

1. How do we compete for talent to join us at Dharamshala?While there is a tremendous talent war being fought by the moneys and funds made available in the product startup ecosystem; the classical IT services companies and brands themselves.While remote work and freelancing is pragmatic and a rage. While the fear of covid-19 is still a reality.

2. How do we compete for projects in India and globally?We have not yet started to aggressively market. We are now focusing on building a solid foundation – a world class talent team, capability (skills) and capacity (width and depth to deliver) of teams across creative, content, VFX, AR/VR, immersive, gaming, performance marketing, media buy, tech – web, mobile, emerging tech, data and analytics, product builds. Basically, all things value creation.

3. Why can’t the teams be remote for a digital first company?We continue to debate this a lot. Being in Dharamshala, we experimented this a bit when Anup and I travelled to Pune and the rest of the team continued working in Dharamshala. We registered the delivered outputs, time taken, meeting, other things. We then came back to Dharamshala and worked under the same roof. When we compared the results – we figured we were able to deliver 5X output. No managers in this mix, only doers. Reasons could have been many, but we liked the in-person interactions and quick turnarounds. Remote work benefits are many, and we will move that model soon as we start gaining scale and opening offices in other metros – but those will be more of a sales office vs. digital delivery center of excellence which we aspire to build in Dharamshala. For now, we’ll steer off this topic and more update later. This will be a great experiment to see how tech, creative, media, ad ops teamwork and deliver in a remote vs. in person work environments.

How do we nurture and build talent in the laps of Himalayas?

How do digital services start up like PULSEPLAY DIGITAL reach, attract, hire, grow and retaintalent locally in Dharamshala?

The answer(s) could be:

1. Hire experienced teams who will train, mentor internsHere are a few open positions https://pulseplaydigital.in/careers/ . We are growing aggressively and please keep checking or send us your resume on careers@pulseplaydigital.in for future roles.

2. Onboard Interns and train    a. Creative: Onboard interns locally  from Graphics, Animation Institutes  b. Tech: Onboard interns locally doing their last term/semester or completed their Master’s in Computer Application (MCA) and Bachelor’s in Computer Application (BCA)    c. Content: Onboard interns locally who have completed their Master’s in Journalism, Media and who have a flair for words written and/or spoken, story telling    d. Ad Ops/Media Buy: Onboard interns who’ve completed graduation and are tech, media savvy    e. Others?


To bring the focus back to our True North – DHARAMSHALA and Himachal Pradesh in all our conversations, interactions with clients, potential candidates, teams. We have set out to develop Talent locally in the laps of Himalayas.

Our Plug – 10+ and beyond – Help us build a world class Team

These are the questions we ask of potential candidates – Both Experienced and Fresh Interns

1. DHARAMSHALA – would you love to live immersed in 5 elements (earth, water, fire, air, space) and work on world class brands and projects from the laps of Himalayas?

2. Would you love to put in your sweat equity while we build the mothership tech, creative, media, ad ops, digital first world class company from Dharamshala?

3. Do you want to create history? Help us move from a Services to a Product / Platform Value creation company?


Wave 1: Services

We will continue to build and invest in teams with

  • Character (Integrity, Attitude)
  • Capability (tech+creative aptitude, fresher + experienced)
  • Commitment to Community Ecosystem Building

Build and launch the below waves 2, 3 in parallel to wave 1

Wave 2: Build an Incubation & Go-To-Market Hub: Products; Platforms;IP; Business Models

We invite start-ups, stealth mode founders, our own PulsePlay Digital teams to share

  • Product ideas, consumer business models, audience acquisition & retention
  • Register new companies       – give equity to our teams, reward ideating founding teams with equity (external or internal to PulsePlay Digital)
  • Spin-off different teams and build MVPs, test, gtm Bharat, India, world, iterate and scale

What’s next?

1. Chasing the most audacious dreams and goals in India/ Bharat / Global value creation as a Team. We’ve set forth on this journey with an audacious dream to bring the best projects and work from brands, startups, enterprise, government customers from all over India and the world to Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh.

2. By doing this we aspire to grow our teams from 10+ to 100+ to 1000+ to 10000+ by bringing all things digital, tech, creative, media, emerging technologies, performance marketing, product consumer app builds at PULSEPLAY DIGITAL PRIVATE LIMITED.

3. From Dharamshala we dream of growing our offices to all metros of India and internationally to USA, Canada, South Americas, UAE, Middle East, Europe, South East Asia and ANZ.

4. The founding teams will take the culture, thinking, PULSEPLAY DIGITAL value creation DNA from Dharamshala to rest of the world.

We are just getting started

Shruti and I are excited to welcome our team of first 10+. Welcome aboard PULSEPLAY DIGITAL team – Anup, Sujata, Ranjeet, Surya, Rishi, Sushant, Aanchal, Sougata, Jayant and We are just getting started for the most exciting rides of our lives. Thank you for choosing us and for your  amazing work ethic. We believe in you. Let’s go.

Our Founding Team is still being formed. We can use all the help we can get – potential candidates and clients/ brand teams.

You are welcome to write to us on deepak.rai@pulseplaydigital.in / shruti@pulseplaydigital.in / careers@pulseplaydigital.in or call us +91-9175100108 or meet virtually or drop in (plug) for a cup of organic herbal tea from our friends and clients www.omcorganic.com (Made in India – Herbal, Hibiscus, Dandelion, Tulsi Lemon, Chamomile, Moringa, Nettle Leaf, Pure Peppermint, Butterfly Pea, Chicory – alternative to caffeine) Encouraged with the initial customer response from all over India, the team is now launching very soon. an additional 29taking the total SKU / unique product offering from 11 to 40 certified USDA Organic and India Organic. Avail great offers online. View all video customer testimonials here – https://omcorganic.com/pages/customer-testimonials

With a healthy replacement of regular white sugar – value added jaggery from our friends and clients – www.drjaggery.com (Made in India – Chai Masala Jaggery Powder, Tripahala, Giloy, Cardamon, Nutmeg, Ginger, Spicy Herbs Kadha, Black Pepper, Turmeric, Mint) For those interested please use discount code = drjaggery-deepak15 for 15% discount. Getting great customer feedback from all over India. Please view customer testimonials here – https://drjaggery.com/blogs/testimonials

To optimal health, value creation, growth, impact and amazing experiences. From the laps of Himalayas, Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, India

Deepak Rai and Shruti Thapa Rai Co-Founders, PULSEPLAY DIGITAL PRIVATE LIMITED