Startupweekend brings budding entrepreneurs to business plan stage

 Ahmedabad became the fifth Indian city to host the Startupweekend, a global platform for aspiring startups, incubators, and mentors.


AHMEDABAD: Gandhinagar-based Deep Moteria wants to create a mobile app that would have daily information about various events being organised in the city. At the end of a 

Startup weekend session organised at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, Moteria had an investor ready to invest in his project.

Jahanvee Potdar, an NID student, wants to convert used tetrapacks into pocket diaries. She and her teammates are now fine-tuning the plan to be pitched to the investors. Centre of Incubation, Innovation and
Entrepreneurship (CII-E) at IIM-A, says it received 51 business ideas from 125 participants at the session held last week (March 1-3, 2013), which were short-listed to 17 through a voting and mentors at the session helped in converting these into a preliminary business plan.

The ideas came were related to sectors like education, hospitality, search engine technology, web platforms, designs, apart from gaming, politics, mobile application, mobile-based helpline, internet, agriculture and SMEs.

"Often, people have business ideas but cannot move forward due to lack of partners, a viable business model or mentors and investors. We brought everyone at one platform," Yash Saxena, one of the organisers of Startupweekend.

Sunil Parekh, founding curator of Hub of Global Shapers, Ahmedabad, World Economic Forum, said the participants displayed maturity while voting by supporting other's business ideas, if they found them to be sound.

Ahmedabad became the fifth Indian city after Delhi, Hyderabad, Mumbai and 
Bengaluru, to host the Startupweekend, a global platform for aspiring start ups, incubators, and mentors.

"We judged the ideas on parameters like whether the working prototype would meet validations required by a customer, whether it is scalable or not and the extent of seriousness and hard work displayed by the participants," said Vishal Mehta, founder of online shopping portal 
infibeam.com, who was also one of the judges at the event.

Youths, whose ideas were shortlisted, were asked to choose their mentors. "I took inputs from a web designer, an MBA, a supply chain manager, a textile designer and a MBA (
finance) to convert the idea into a business plan. Now we will prepare a regular business plan and would like to raise funds as well as seek marketing avenues," said Jahanvee. Deep Moteria too was assured of initial funding by Sunil Parekh, also a judge at the event.