Kochi, Aug 19: Some of India’s most successful, business founders are advising aspiring young entrepreneurs to make the maximum use of the existing startup ecosystem in India; not feel limited by their location, product or resources; and focus instead on problem solving at every stage.
In a series of panel discussions and lightning talks conducted as part of the ‘IEDC Summit 2017’, India’s largest student entrepreneur event, here today, they noted that the success of a startup does not depend on the factors such as geography, language, or the universality of product or service.
Varun Chandran, who owns Corporate 360, a multimillion company that operates in a small farming village in Kerala; John Kuriakose, founder of DentCare Dental Labs, who hails from a poor background and has gone on to become one of Asia’s leading businessmen; James Joseph of Jackfruit 365; and Shruti Chaturvedi, founder of Chaipaani shared their stories and insights of the industry.
“Corporate 360 is set up in a small village in Pathanapuram; and that is my biggest success. It is a big misconception that business happens only in IT parks. Place is not at all a factor for the success of your company, and that is the biggest opportunity for aspiring startup founders,” said Varun.
He was speaking at a panel discussion on ‘“Identify the problem, Explore the opportunity, build your Enterprise/Startup’ – the centerpiece event of ‘IEDC Summit 2017’, a high-profile event organized by Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM) held last evening (August 19) at Adlux Exhibition and Convention Centre.
John Kuriakose noted that the passion is the only ingredient needed for the creating a success story.
“I came from a humble background, where it was tough to earn a day’s meal. I had started learning things about the dental care industry when I was working in a dispensary. And the passion to learn about the industry drew me to start the business,” said Mr. Kuriakose.
In a talk titled ‘Failing to succeed, The story of India’s first e-commerce’, Vaitheeswaran K, the country’s first e-commerce entrepreneur, reminded the youngsters that all startups have to go through an ardous uphill journey and it was imperative to learn from failures.
“Ninety-nine percent of start-ups fail. Identifying problems and finding solutions should be the aim of a startup. An entrepreneur should always look for the nuances,” said Mr. Vaitheeswaran.
Advising the students to explore emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI),Deepu S Nath, the Managing Director of Faya, said things which were considered impossible five years back are now being made possible thanks to AI.
“There are number of experimentations progressing in brain mapping industry. AI is the future technology and the youngsters should tap its possibility to create wonders,” said Mr. Nath.
The story of James Joseph who resigned from Microsoft to start Jackfruit 365 was also inspirational for the students.
The event saw participation from around 200 Innovation Entrepreneurship Development Centres (IEDCs) – small incubators set up at engineering, technical, management and arts and science colleges –to help students pursue innovative ideas and embrace the entrepreneurial spirit.
More than 50 prototypes and products were on display as part of IEDC 2017.
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