The only thing constant in the life of a startup is change. Every Startup has to change, experiment and adapt to have an edge for itself. So when startups experiment so much why wouldn’t HeadStart? This Saturday, HeadStart presented a new format specially designed for April Startup Saturday. It had pitches in front of panelists, it had live TV show recorded and it had the real power packed interactions.
The Special Lightening Pitches
HeadStart had a Panelist Lightening Pitch section for this month. Here selected startups got an opportunity to present in front for Panelists who have been there and done that.
We meet many entrepreneurs with varied experience at HeadStart, but this experience was one of its own. We had the first lightening pitch from an ex-service man. Mr Shivaram who has served the Indian Navy in his hey days has now taken the baton forward with his own venture IDACS. IDACS manufactures energy saving products for corporate and residents at very affordable costs. Having served clients like NICE, and Microsoft; IDACS presented its special panelist LP to take some solid advice and seek some funding for the company.
Next to present in front of the Panel was Saptarshi from Robosoft. Systems A regular head starter, Saptarshi with his group of friends has a challenging task. To create more awareness for Robotics and sell products that help corporate clients ease their life. A product called Duct Cleaner Robot was briefed which has already won clients like Blue Star and Voltas. It was quite interesting to find out how Robosoft is trying hard to make people understand the concept of Robotics and how they have derived a business model for sustenance by enlightening many minds across engineering campuses of India.
The Panelists advice
There were some really solid ideas that the Panel had for the participants. The panelists were clear that a startup which can sustain and doesn’t have an immediate increase in size on cards should ideally not look forward to Venture Capital. As one of them well said that, if you have a positive cashflow and do not have a vision to multiply the size of your venture as of now, seeking for Venture Capital would simply mean discounting yourself to the max and losing the game in the long run.
Regular Lightening Pitches
Apart from the Special LPs which got a chance to present in front of the Panelists, The attendees also had a chance to experience two other technology ventures that were presented by Ankesh of SuccessNexus and Spandan from MobStreet.
SuccessNexus a startup by Ankesh Kothari takes a completely new look at the affiliate model which Ankesh claims hasn’t evolved since 1998. The business model relies on a win-win-win deal where the seller gets new buyers, the affiliates who put the word out get some commission on sales and Success Nexus which hosts the complete platform takes small % fees. Currently under beta phase Ankesh invited the Audience to sign-up with an invite code (123456) and experience the fun themselves.
Next was a very apt and well thought presentation from Mob Street. Why can we term that apt, read on. While Spandan was starting the presentation the stage was getting reworked for the special ET Now episode on Mobile VAS. Ideally it becomes a challenge to present in a chaotic situation but Spandan had a better idea. He started the discussion talking about how superstitious he is, rolled on discussing the struggle that people in metros have to go through and ended up with an offer no one could reject. MobStreet.in his startup offers best deals on various services like Spas, restaurants, movies, sports etc and other best stuff in your city. And what deal he threw to the crowd? A straight 50% off on any bill at Pizzorama by paying Rs 1 advance to Mobstreet. No need to mention the crowds went pizzazz over the offer!
ET Now Panel discussion on Mobile VAS
Before winding up there was a special segment which was hosted by ET Now. A segment of the very popular ET Now show – Starting Up was shot among HeadStart audience. It was a panel discussion on the state of Mobile VAS. The team included Virendra Gupta – Founder of Verse, Samir Bangara – COO Indiagames, Sailesh Varudkar – AVP VAS, Vodafone, Zubin Dibash – head AVP innovations TATA Docomo, Siddharth Agarwal – Founder Mobicule and our very own host Sudhir Syal.
The panelist threw good insights on how we are experiencing Indianized version of trends like the Apple App Store and VAS applications which were once only talked about in the US and Japan. The team even shed some light on how Business models can sprout considering the demographics, the likes and dislikes and the purchasing power of an ordinary Indian consumer. Many intriguing questions from the audience were handled by the panelist.
Before we bid adieu
We started this post discussing how a startup faces change and we know adaptability is futile without proper feedback. So HeadStart is all ears for your feedback. Liked this onetime special format? Want more panelists to judge LPs? Want media shows? Speak out and HeadStart will do the needful. Apart from commenting on this post you can definitely touch base with HeadStart by shooting a mail to mumbai [at] headstart.in. So up until the next Startup Saturday, work hard and network harder!
About the Author – Himanshu Chanda is a business blogger and a regular visitor at the HeadStart Saturdays. Apart from the event he also shares his views on his business blog BizDharma.com