If you read our review of the P@SHA Launchpad in Lahore you might have read a brief introduction of Max99, instant messenger for mobile phones. Now, here is complete story of Max 99 and the team behind this impressive product.
Max 99 is a brain-child of Farhan Riaz and Aftab. Recently, I managed to have a brief meeting with Farhan who showed me what our younger generation is capable of, once it sets its sights on higher planes.
Both of them were class fellows in graduate class at UET, Lahore. While they were studying, they got addicted to Mig33, a mobile chat client. Aftab, being the geek, started developing the application which ran on the Mig33 protocol, and made it do stuff that got them some fans. However their exploits of the system did not sit well with the Mig33 people and they were soon pushed out of it.
At that time, they decided to develop their own product. Aftab took to the challenges of overall development of the product and Farhan looked after marketing and business development activities. Though poles apart in their personalities, Aftab being an introvert geek and Farhan – social and a great marketer, they made a perfect team.
While building their own messenger they went ahead and added translation bots and built-in browser (which helps them rope in affiliate marketing).
It is amazing what these two have achieved. Fresh out of college; they did not go for any job, worked from home, and have amassed a 0.5 million user base, which is huge rather phenomenal by any means for a team of two fresh graduates. If you ever had doubts on our younger lot, these two will shatter those. They have figured out things like viral marketing and crowd sourcing which even we, the older ones, sometimes fail to grasp.
We need to support people like these two, so they stay above water and make it big. As I talked to them, the worst obstacle in the path of these fearless young men is the pressure of family to get a decent job. I hope they can push that back till they create a success story for the rest of us.
here is the link to TechCrunch Post, with Max99 listed as only Pakistani app in the competition. Wow!!,
(Thanks to Khurram Samad for pointing this out)