Author Archive for Abhishek

Fresh Talent & Startups

I remember having had a discussion with batchmates triggered by an online article in 2005 when i was in my final year at college. The article predicted that big MNCs in India would find it more and more difficult to recruit and/or retain top talent in years to come. This, because of attractive offers from startups which MNCs would not be able to match in terms of one or more of: salary, work, scope, mentoring, growth curve etc. I and my batchmates (Integrated CS Btech+Mtech, IITD) did believe a bit of it then. One year down the line, we know it for sure. Half of us are now in startups as founding members or early employees, and most of the rest are looking for a switch soon.

Saw this today:
“27 graduates out of the 35-student electrical engineering batch at IIT Mumbai have opted for jobs with start-ups rather than top-tier companies.” extracted from http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow/1637763.cms

However, it is rather disapointing that for most, the sole motivation is a bigger salary packet. The inability to appreciate the other larger benefits of working in a startup still remain unappreciated, primarily because of lack of information on that front. I was having a talk with one senior faculty member at IITD on how there should atleast be one serious course offering on entrepreneurship so that students be able to take a more informed decision. His response indicated a lack of participation from industry. Incubators such as the one at IITD cannot be effective if they are to work in isolation. Would be great to have some triggering from the Investor/Entrepreneur Community on this front.

Investor Ecosystem

I was curious and wanted to know what all transpires within the investor ecosystem. Since SEs wouldnt be of much help in this regard so what better place to ask than VentureWoods. To keep it within the scope of the site, ‘investors’ can be restricted to mean angels and non-corporate VCs. However it would be great if we can expand it to include institutional investors and corporate VCs too. I am listing some specific questions to give a sense of what i mean by ecosystem:

1] How does a person decide which VC firm or angel group to join/get associated with?
2] What is the nature and level of interaction among various such investing entities? Do they discuss/consult a few others (symbiotic on basis of expertise maybe) before they invest? Are announcements of an investment ‘within the ecosystem’ and ‘to outside world’ simultaneous or subsequent?
3] Are there sub-ecosytems on basis of location/domain/stage/nature of funding, or is the interaction fairly exhaustive?
3] If a group has invested in a venture(team+idea+geography), how would that affect how other groups react to a similar investment opportunity, idea being the invariant.
4] Is someone in the ecosystem is being admired by others within the ecosystem, why is s/he usually being admired for.
5] What are the popular sources of information?

Would be great to have your thoughts on other aspects and facets of the ecosystem too.