An interview with Sports Entrepreneurs from IISM- Diksha & Ankit

Published On: February 18, 2021
Sports Entrepreneurs

Ms. Diksha Chillar & Mr. Ankit Nama are our students from PGP in Sports & Wellness Management Batch 2019-20. Diksha & Ankit have together founded Æthleti Circle, a Sports Management firm. With utmost passion, both alumni of IISM chose to become Sports Entrepreneurs. As Entrepreneurs, Diksha & Ankit aim to make a mark of their own in the Sports Industry and establish their firm as one of the finest in India.

Here’s an interview with Diksha & Ankit that aims to show a way forward to young sports lovers who dream big.

1. What does sports mean for you?

If we can describe sports for us in two words, it would be- life and passion. For us, sports are anything that does away with any of our stress or concern, either while playing or watching, this is what we enjoy the most. Basically, that enables the child mode in us.

2. What encouraged you to pursue Sports Management?

Since Our childhood, we’ve been passionate about sports. We all know the Indian sports industry is on its rise, so pursuing a PG in Sports Management from one of the finest colleges in this domain will allow us to work towards our passion and gain essential exposure and knowledge.

3. How did IISM help you in learning nitty gritties of the Sports Industry?

Amongst all the sports Management colleges, IISM is the best. Their curriculum design, teaching pedagogy, realistic learning activities taught us the skills and built mindsets required for success in the sports industry in a country like India.

We were prepared for our professional journey in Aethleti Circle with experience and the opportunities IISM offered to us in the sports field, emphasizing engagement and practice in real-time environments.

4. How has gaining formal Sports Management education helped you be a part of the Sports Industry?

Gaining formal education in sports Management has helped us acquire and develop fundamental skills that are essential for success in the sports industry, such as critical thinking, creativity, effective communication, and teamwork. It has taught us to apply theoretical knowledge and past experiences from IISM in our own venture Æthleti Circle.

5. Tell us about the moment when you decided to begin with a venture of your own?

Post classes at IISM, we always took out time to discuss about the Indian Sports Industry in general. While discussing, we used to realize the scope of improvement which lies in this industry. With our knowledge, experience & entrepreneurial instinct, one fine day we chose Athlete Representation vertical to start our journey with.

6. Share about your venture- Æthleti Circle LLP. What is the aim behind launching your own company?

Æthleti Circle is a Sports Management Firm with main verticals in Athlete Representation, Content Production & Event Management. Managing the Athlete is necessary to keep the hopes alive of a player. We wanted to build an ecosystem that delivers everything an Athlete needs so that they focus on their game. Ideas behind Content Production and Event Management were to grow Lower to Middle Level spectator sports in India.

7. Your journey as Sports Entrepreneurs.

We have come a long way professionally and personally since the introduction of Aethleti Circle into our lives. We can mark our learnings into following points:

  • Managing Finances: From the first day, we were very clear of maintaining finances at place. Keeping our expenses in check and also figuring out the ways to keep Aethleti shining with positive cash flow.
  • Data Management: In this tech era, no one can deny the importance of data creation & management. Hence, we have been working hard in order to keep generating sports data in our system from the first day.
  • Self-Trust: During our journey, there have been times about others questioning us, but we kept on going and believed in our-selves.
  • Team Management: Team Management is not just about assigning certain tasks to the team. We have been handling ourselves in such a way that our employees enjoy the work as much as we do. We thrive in positivity created by the whole ecosystem.

8. What are the responsibilities of Athlete Managers? How does this section of Sports Management work?

Athlete Managers work closely with Athletes in terms of providing them support in Sponsorship, Sports Science, PR, Legal sphere and more areas.

This section of Sports Management is very critical as it enables athletes to focus more on the field leaving all their off-field blues to us.

9. Tell us about one breakthrough which boosted your confidence as Sports Entrepreneurs 200%.

The breakthrough which boosted our confidence was the signing of an Indian Kabaddi Player Rohit Kumar. He is the captain of a Pro Kabaddi League team called Bengaluru Bulls. When a player of such stature becomes part of an organisation, it brings both satisfaction and responsibilities. Rohit Kumar trusting us on our services for his Athlete Representation is one of the key highlights of our journey so far. This is yet another breakthrough.

10. Where do you see yourself and Æthleti Circle in the upcoming years?

We would like to see ourselves in the group of elite sports management firms. It’s a long Journey and let’s hope for the best.

11. What piece of advice would you like to give to students or Sports Management aspirants?

Our industry is very niche. Opportunities do arrive, but it takes time because of the situation we all are facing currently. Have patience. Don’t give up on learning. Future is bright for Indian Sports in general.

12. Advice for budding Sports Entrepreneurs.

After idea generation one should invest time in planning. Company cannot be started in just one day, it requires a lot of planning to make and decide the standard goals. Once goals are set, invest time and effort in execution.

An Interview with Ms. Diksha Chillar & Mr. Ankit Nama,
Founder- Æthleti Circle
IISM Alumni
PGP in Sports & Wellness Management Batch 2019-20

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