Why is now the right time to invest in female entrepreneurs? In an article on Built In Chicago, Jessica Tenuta, co-founder of Packback Books, discusses some of the challenges female founders face in starting a company today. Shradha Agarwal, President of ContextMedia, has risen to become one of Chicago’s most preeminent female founders. Jessica details Shradha Agarwal’s investment in her company and in female founders across Chicago, and reflects on the impact those investments are having start-up gender landscape. Read the full article here.
Shradha Agarwal, Co-Founder and President of ContextMedia, immigrated to the U.S. at the age of 19, and would go on to help start ContextMedia while attending Northwestern University shortly thereafter. In a featured interview about Immigrant Entrepreneurship Fox Business’ STOSSEL, Shradha discussed what led her to decide to start her company in the United States and how she integrated her Indian values into her American work ethic at ContextMedia. To watch the full episode, click here (Shradha’s segment starts at 33:02).
Among five other Chicago tech companies, ContextMedia has been recognized by Built in Chicago as “One Coming into Their Own.” Co-Founder, Shradha Agarwal, shares her excitement of two big milestones: a new office and doubling in revenue. To fill the space and keep up with demand, the company plans to hire an additional 100 ContextMedians by the end of the year. Read here to find out more behind ContextMedia’s success!
The Techweek100 recognizes Chicago area leaders impacting the business and technology landscape. Honorees range from technology managers to ‘key enablers of the digital ecosystem’. For the first time, both ContextMedia’s Founders, Rishi Shah and Shradha Argawal, have received Techweek100 recognition. Argawal was honored by Techweek100 in 2013 and could not be happier to join the ranks of amazing leaders again. See the full Techweek100 list here.
If there is anyone who understands the difficulties of receiving start-up funding it is founders Rishi Shah and Shradha Argawal of ContextMedia, Inc. In 2006, venture capitalists were not sold on 19 year old Shah’s healthcare technology vision, leaving Shah and Argawal with nothing but self-support for the creation of their start-up. Eight years later, ContextMedia has established one of the leading healthcare media providers with promise of tremendous growth. Shah and Agarwal celebrate their success by giving back. Over the past two years, ContextMedia has invested $32 million in start-up investments and has even provided incubator space for the Chicago entrepreneur community. ContextMedia estimates another $10 million in start-up investments over the next three to five years. Interested in ContextMedia’s start-up story and investment plans? Follow the link to read more.
Built In Chicago recently wrote an article featuring ContextMedia, discussing the importance of first hires. One of the most powerful relationships at a startup is the one between the founding team and their first hire. At ContextMedia, Jim Demas, CFO, was that first hire, after Shradha Agarwal (CSO) and co-founder Rishi Shah (CEO) scrapped their original team and started what they call ContextMedia 2.0. Five years after he was hired, Shradha now says, “Usually he’s the first person we text or call…if Jim was not there, the company would look very different.” Jim was originally invigorated by the energy that Rishi and Shradha emitted and as a result, he wanted to work hard for them. Starting a company? Your first hire can dictate the flow of your future business! Read more here.
Rishi Shah, Founder and CEO of ContextMedia, was recently interviewed by Chicago Tribune, for the Blue Sky Innovations feature. In the interview, Rishi talks about leaving college before graduation, ContextMedia’s office move, and the his angel investment fund. Rishi has come a long way since dropping out of Northwestern, and his digital media company has, too. Rishi speaks about his co-founder, Shradha Agarwal, and why their relationship works so well. While they are both excellent leaders, Rishi brings the confidence and exuberance necessary to run a company, while Shradha brings a level of humility and rationale to keep the company grounded, yet profitable. Want to learn more about Rishi, Shradha, and their company? Read the full article here.
Looking beyond race and gender is important in a mentor/mentee relationship. Forbes recently wrote an article about the tendency of entrepreneurs to gravitate towards mentors who are similar to them in age, race, and gender. But there are reasons to step outside of your comfort zone and find a mentor with whom you share deeper values — not just superficial similarities. Just ask Shradha Agarwal, Co-Founder and CSO of ContextMedia. Shradha states, “Women mentors are really great at helping build confidence, teaching communication skills, and training on other hard skills that are needed to succeed. Male mentors add perspective and allow us to learn how we are being perceived.” For Shradha, both men and women are helpful in their own way, for different reasons. For other entrepreneurs, life stages are more important than ‘age’. Finding a mentor who is a good fit for you as an individual is essential, but its even more important not to judge a book by its cover, or a mentor by their age, gender, or race. Read the full article here.
ContextMedia, Inc. was recently named one of Chicago Crain’s “Best Places to Work for Millennials”. It was big news — even Fox heard about it! They interviewed Shradha Agarwal, President and Co-Founder of ContextMedia, to be featured in their segment highlighting some of the best companies to work for. Jake Hamilton of Fox News calls these companies “vibrant”. Best part? We’re hiring! Want to watch the video? Click here.
Crain’s Chicago Business published their list of Best Places to work, and this year, ContextMedia landed on the list! Placing 5th in the category for “Best for Millennials”, ContextMedia prides itself on openness and transparency. Those qualities are integral to the culture built by Rishi Shah, CEO, and Shradha Agarwal, CSO. From Office Olympics to the Purple Man Award, the company aims to make the office a place of business and fun. And guess what? They’re hiring! To see the other winners and read the full article, click here.
ContextMedia, Inc. has expanded beyond Illinois with the New York team acquiring a new office space that leads their sponsorship sales, research and marketing efforts in the region. With the new office located in historic Midtown Manhattan, ContextMedia’s New York team looks forward to expanding upon the groundwork laid by the Chicago team, and Founders Rishi Shah and Shradha Agarwal, CEO and CSO, respectively. As the company’s suite of digital healthcare networks delivering condition-specific programming continues to grow, the New York team will be committed to building new partnerships with health-care brands to provide a holistic marketing solution at the point-of-care. Watch out New York! Here comes ContextMedia! Read the full article here.
A sales pitch should be a two-way dialogue to build a partnership around a sales solution to a client problem. Women sometimes focus too much on their pitch and perfecting the delivery, but don’t leave enough room to listen, adapt and have a conversation. It’s important to establish a relationship with a client and not focus solely on the sales transaction.
- Shradha Agarwal, ContextMedia
Read the other 10 pieces of advice here.
8. Tech Integration for Improving Care
The use of technology to build better relationships, improve communication and diagnose early based on EMR-integrated provider-patient platforms excites me as a healthcare angel investor. Although the quantified self receives lots of attention, large segments of our population are not as tech-savvy, and technology needs to have tangible and immediate benefits for high adoption.
Ashik Desai, EVP of Business Development at ContextMedia, was recently interviewed by IdeaMensch. IdeaMensch connects with thousands of entrepreneurs and since Ashik is a star performer at ContextMedia, he was selected for an in-depth interview. Ashik states that he “is a firm believer in execution”, and that “the key to bringing ideas to life is having a vision, getting insight from others on it, and then making it happen”. In the interview, Ashik speaks about his undergrad at Northwestern, what a typical day is for an EVP, trends that excite him – even what he eats for breakfast! Want to learn more? Read the full interview here.
Waiting rooms are an inevitable part of the healthcare system. Both children and adults have all been there before; we all know that sitting around waiting for our appointment can feel like a waste of time. So, how can we turn “wait time” into an educational and engaging learning experience? That’s the question that ContextMedia sets out to answer each and every day. Co-founders Rishi Shah and Shradha Agarwal chose to embrace technology, personalize information to target various demographics around the US, and provide educational content to patients living with chronic illnesses where and when they take action. Once the groundwork was laid, the next step was to hire the best talent to enable the evolution of these ideas. Matt Garms, Member Outreach Manager at ContextMedia, Inc., is one prime example of that talent. Matt recently had an article published on Yahoo regarding patient wait time and how to make the most of it, since his role at ContextMedia means he knows how physicians can truly educate and engage their patients. Read the full article here.