From New York to Mumbai

From New York to Mumbai

John Verbic
1 May 2014

Trepup was founded by John Verbic, an American-born entrepreneur who emigrated from New York City, United States to Mumbai, India in August 2007. Originally a banker focused on emerging markets, particularly BRIC countries, he left what was familiar in order to take a chance on an uncertain future. It was his decision alone - no company moved him.

John and his family arrived in India with the hope and optimism that they would succeed no matter the odds. With its unmatched diversity and enthralling character, he encountered in India a culture with strong entrepreneurial roots, and a focus on community and networks.

During the global financial crisis, John struggled to find employment in contrast to his Indian friends who had large personal networks to rely on. He started reading technical books in his spare time to find a way to overcome the economic downturn and his challenges to access business opportunities in India. This introduced John to network-based business models, inspiring him to embark on an entrepreneurial quest that would pave the way for his eventual breakthrough with Trepup. Like many startups, Trepup started as a solution to a problem John had personally experienced.

With a mission to level the business playing field, John incorporated Trepup on 1 May 2014 in Zug, Switzerland. He chose Switzerland to establish the company because of its geostrategic location from where he could centralize business activities. He named the company "Trepup", a linguistic blend of the words "entrepreneur" and "startup", and bootstrapped the company from personal finances without the help of outside capital. With this investment, John and a team of three computer engineers - Shantanu Gaonkar, Urvi Parmar and Dinesh Sawakhande - rented desk space in the suburbs of Mumbai.

On 17 Nov 2014, John announced that Trepup was entering its beta testing phase. He invited 1,000 businesses to use the product to uncover any bugs or issues. In 2015, Trepup expanded from Switzerland to more than 30 countries, and later to Asia and more than 70 countries. On 7 Feb 2017, John moved Trepup out of beta and launched the production release. By March 2019, Trepup was available in all 195 countries.

Trepup originally started as a business network, but pivoted to become a B2B2C platform in response to the needs of its growing database of users. Over the years, it has been continuously updated to help people and businesses around the world unlock economic opportunity. John’s goal is to offer an all-in-one platform for businesses to sell their products, grow and be profitable, while simultaneously creating a community that is inclusive, equitable and accessible for everyone, everywhere.