After the two remarkable, intriguing, knowledge-gaining and beguiling days of numerous events, guest talks, workshops, panel discussions and competitions, the i5 Summit held at IIM Indore came to a closure on August 21, 2016. The second day of the summit witnessed two overwhelming workshops, interactive panel discussions and guest talks, along with two major events, Get Funded and Entrepreneur of the Year.
The day began with the most coveted event in the i5 summit, Get Funded!, which is the international venture plan competition. It is one of a kind platform where entrepreneurs were given a chance to raise capital by selling a minority stake of their startups. 14 teams participated in the event. The teams pitched their ideas to the Angel Investors to get funding. The entrepreneurs’ ideas were from a wide range, including education, election voting, promotion of jewelry markets, housing, health, etc. The highest funding was offered to team Medmonks, who focused on helping clients who are patients of a disease whose treatment isn’t available in the country; or the patient’s national insurance doesn’t cover it. The team received a funding of Rs. 50 Lac. Second highest funding was received by a team from IIM Indore itself; Xpress Laundromat received a funding of Rs. 30 Lac. Their startup is a customized laundry service for Indian colleges with plans to expand to more institutions and into the hospitality industry. The investors appreciated the ideas put ahead by the young entrepreneurs, thereby providing a total funding of Rs. 130 Lac during the event.
Mr. K. Vaitheeswaran, Angel Investor & Startup Mentor conducted a workshop on e-Commerce. He discussed about how one can expand a business online or offline, and what would be the right time to go global in a business. ‘Content is always your best salesman, as it is far more persuasive and it would never quit your job’, he said. He also discussed on grappling with bad reviews online and investment of money ensued.
Mr. Balaji Chakravarthi, Founder, Scovelo conducted the workshop on Digital Marketing. He noted that digital marketing reaches out to a worldwide audience, not necessarily just for sales, but also for connecting and engaging with the customers. ‘Digital marketing can also be used for demand generation; however anti-marketeers like ad blockers pose a challenge to marketers’, he said.
Mobile Wallet Payment/Mobile Commerce
The first panel discussion was held on the topic Mobile Wallet Payment/Mobile Commerce, which had Mr. Zishaan Hayath, CEO, Powai Lake Ventures & Toppr.com; Mr. Ajeet Khurana, Advisor- Kalaari Capital, Ex-CEO, SINE; Mr. Samar Singla, Founder & CEO, Jugnoo; Mr. K. Vaitheeswaran, Angel Investor & Startup Mentor; Mr. Sanjay Singh, Founder & CEO, QorQI; and Mr. Abhishek Sanghvi, Co-Founder & Director, Swan Angels Network as the panelists. The panelists said that m-commerce is a result of consumer’s need, because as and when people change their consumption patterns, commerce also changes. They suggested that wallet is a result of failed transactions. Contrary to the popular belief, the rate of growth of offline transactions on wallets like PayTM is much more than online and soon it could take over online in volume terms as well. Another important point discussed was that the answer to marketing a wallet to a rural customer cannot come from just a startup, it has to be in tandem with the government startups as well.
Is VC Funding a Kiss of Death for Startups?
Another panel discussion was on the topic—Is VC Funding a Kiss of Death for Startups? The panelists included Mr. Samir Kumar, MD, Inventus Capital Partners; Mr. Harshad Lahoti, Senior Partner, Ah! Ventures; Ms. Marlina Ramachandran,Regional Head, Western and Central India, NEN; Mr. Anirudh Balakrishnan, Co-Founder, ASAP and Mr. Rehan Yarkhan, Founder & Operator, Orios Venture Partners. The panelists kept their points on how it is difficult for a startup to suddenly be professional on a venture capitalist’s demand, when they are used to work in a particular manner. The discussion revolved around the fact that VC is about making money through legitimate means. The location doesn’t matter if you have access to talent, resource and customers.
Entrepreneur of the Year
Entrepreneur of the Year, a new array to the events in the i5 Summit, tested the capacity of the participants to deal with ambiguity and uncertainty while squandering in search of a million dollar business opportunity. The event took place in three phases namely, Ideate, Simulate and Defend It, where the participants had to save a failed startup. The final round had seven teams presenting their plans of actions to salvage the startup assigned to them. Implementing a great service and using a wallet revenue model were some of the solutions proposed to counteract decrease in the revenue. The team AcadCom, consisting of Pradyun Mehrotra and Masoom Sachdeo won for their innovative approach to solve the problems faced by ‘Mochi Media’ startup. They proposed that the startup implement a strategic promotion based revenue model that provides advertising platform to independent developers to sustain the growth. Mr. Harish Dalal, Umbrella; who judged the event urged the teams to focus on adding an education component and not to focus on social services that have no social value. Mr. Swapnil Kothari, Founder Chairman & MD, Indore Indira Group felicitated the winners. He said that entrepreneur is someone whose value system remains intact in success and failure alike. He congratulated the students for their achievements.
The closing speech was given by Mr. Bibop Gresta, COO, Hyperloop. Mr. Gresta started off with a presentation about Hyperloop, showcasing the traffic issues being faced by numerous nations and how lives are being affected due to pollution related health issues. Mr. Gresta emphasized that Hyperloop aims at efficiency rather than speed and thus sourced its energy from attached windmills and solar panels and also used regenerative braking thus producing more energy than it consumed. With an extensive focus on safety and speed he quoted, ‘Shrinking distances, expand hearts!’
Mr. Gresta added that his visit to India is not just aimed at meeting with the authorities but also to attract the best talent from the nation for this worldwide movement. To conclude, he quoted the Chinese proverb ‘Those who say it can’t be done shouldn’t interrupt those doing it’.
The event concluded with lots of enthusiasm for entrepreneurship, innovative ideas and inspiration and turned out to be a perfect platform that brought together bright, innovative minds from across the country; putting them face-to-face with the best investors in the market.