TheNFAPost Podcast

Chennai, NFAPost: Chennai-based premium living space for the elderly, Athulya Assisted Living, has plans to foray into Hyderabad and Bengaluru within a year. Started by three founders in Chennai in 2017, the self-funded startup has scaled from 4 beds to 100 beds in just two years.

“Before launching Athulya, we did a lot of research and found that there is a huge demand for such premium living space for the elderly. Athulya’s focus is both on senior care and wellness. We provide a holistic approach right from security, to infrastructure and healthcare support,” Krishna Kavya J, CEO of Athulya told NFAPost.

Athulya works on a rental model. It provides an in-house nutritionist to plan out meals and healthcare professionals are available round the clock. “Every day there will be activities so that we keep the elderly people always engaged. Of the total occupants, 70% are women, and the rest are men,” said Kavya.

At present, the startup’s facilities are in TTK Road, Arumbakkam and Perungudi, in Chennai. Talking about competitors, Kavya said, “While other companies’ living spaces are on outskirts, ours will always be within the city and closer to hospitals. We have tied up with many hospitals. Even in Bengaluru and Hyderabad, we will be looking for spaces within the city.”

A recent CII (the Confederation of Indian Industry) report says that the senior population in the world is the fastest growing segment with 60 plus population touching 11.5% of world population. As per estimates, by 2050, the 60 plus population will increase at 22% and outnumber the population below 15 years of age.

This rapidly changing global demographics has resulted in a sharp rise in the demand for senior care services. This coupled with an increased life expectancy of the population, and an increased tendency globally to have nuclear families, has further accelerated the growth in the senior care sector, the report adds.

Almost 95% of the occupants in Athulya are individuals and their children stay outside the country. “At this age, they don’t want to invest in retirement homes which cost anywhere between Rs 40 lakh and Rs 55 lakh. Here, they pay from Rs 40,000 to Rs 55,000 a month depending on the facilities that they have opted for,” said Kavya, adding both clients and real estate companies have understood the whole concept of assisted living well.

The global research agency Persistence estimates that the global elder care services market will reach a market valuation of $1767 billion by end of 2025 reflecting a 8.4% CAGR over this period.

The startup has invested Rs 2 crore in each facility, and two of its facilities have broken even. “In this business, one can expect 10-15% profit,” said Kavya, adding that there is always a huge demand for such living spaces and the startup’s vision is to create a globally preferred senior living destination for a happy, healthy and safe aging.

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