It is a passion, believe me. I walked all the way to vgsom and was alone. None of my friends were really interested and even dude (dilip) turned me down. I think Argon18 would oblige my passion basing on my attendance record (25%).So what exactly cheered me up at this talk ?It was Joy Laskar. He didn’t speak on the organisational structures in a start-up which I hoped for. But he basically answered the question 'How should you convince venture capitalists that your enterprise would fetch a revenue of one billion and would get listed at NASDAQ in next five years?'
So the basic question how did he propose to do it? His first statement "Always put forward the market not the technology, VC's are not interested in a technological innovation but the market potential it has". Bang on!!The way he proposed it, might be rude for all those innovators but for me it was like 20yrs down the lane. Then he emphasised on how small is the VC world and the meager probability of getting a venture, which is in fact tending to zero. As start-ups are increasing at much higher rate than the VC's. Analysis of capital fund distribution. The ideology and psychology of investors. The mentality of a herd even in most enlightened communities.
Then he started drifting from startup culture into IC industry. How a nerd from G.Tech without any experience in marketing could get 25 million worth customers. He showed the picture of this nerd holding a integrated chip which at first glimpse looked like a plum cake to me. Then he showed a graph which according to him was an ideal example of whatever he wanted to explain, which by now you should have understood that I couldn’t get a word. Except for the words analog and digital for which I should thankful to my robotics experience. He emphasised on importance of credibility among the investors. Which according to him once lost will never be found. He also told the importance of explaining your business idea to as many tom, dick and harry's you can meet. This according to him made you well prepared for that one important presentation.
By this time, Time started playing the role of devil’s advocate. Joy Laskar had to rush up the things, so at last he emphasised on the importance of ‘Elevator Pitch’. My first reaction 'What’s that?'He modestly after explaining the importance of it, realised that crowd wasn't very amused. So he asked "Do any one of you know Elevator pitch?"Luckily to save the face of the crowd, someone answered it. It was a very simple concept. If anyone had an idea about baseball and did understand the meaning of a Pitch. If he had known how much time it takes for an elevator to traverse few floors. Then he should have cracked it. By now many of you have must have cracked it, rest consult a doctor. It was a great concept. His interrelation of Horserace and Elevator Pitch was hilarious and intuitive.
On the whole it was an evening that an entrepreneur would cherish. He then answered few questions, there were really few questions in fact only one. A student queried “how successful are college start-ups in gaining VC's?”The answer wasn’t astonishing but joy laskar made it even obvious. His answer "I am very good to drop-outs, as you see all the major ventures Yahoo, Google, Wipro, Apple etc. are all products of them. We people who are unfortunate to graduate are the people working under them and end up bald”. He reiterated that we hold a deadly combination of being in the age of change and being in the country with huge market potential.
So what made this experience happiest for me? It was the thought. I came up with so many business ideas during my walk back to the Hall. I don’t know how successful these ideas would be, if at all they are implemented .But the thing that ideas struck my head amazed me. It made me think!! It really made me think and I was happy to do the brainstorming. I like that feeling of stress and reluctance to leave the problem still I get a perfect business idea. I like the feeling of thinking unconventionally. Focus on the areas which may give me an opportunity . I like the feeling of creating something in society which would make their life’s comfortable inside the existing constraints. I like the thought that no one else could think about it. I like the entrepreneur in me.