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Sunday, January 15, 2012

Talk by Mr.Anil Joshi of Mumbai Angels

As part of the Ideafest organized by two IIM Ahmedabad Student Clubs(Entre and Public Policy), Mr Anil Joshi came to campus today. He have a PPT based talk for 30min followed by 30min Q&A session. Some main highlights of his talk which I gathered are below
·        Pitfalls in new Ventures
o   Objective evaluation-see with rose tinted glasses!
o   No real insight-not knowing their target customers well.
o   Inadequate understanding of technical requirements-shop floor experience not well.  
o   Poor financial understanding-cash management/working capital management
o   Legal issues ignorance-especially IPR when people go global.
·        Why Product failure
o   Poor timing-someone opening SMS based venture when market dying due to data growth
o   Design-product poor design(Android phones for example-my observation)
o   Distribution-especially for
o   Unclear business-if your strategy B2C and you target B2B, it’s a mismatch
o   One customer dependence-my observation-Infosys/GE episode.
·        Financial Failure recipe
o   Undercapitalize-have cash for time before you can figure out your first customer
o   Debt too early-Inmobile($500K investment, concept of search through SMS mode-changed concept in 6months-but 3rd idea by that time co down to last 20% and no money to execute that idea of smart phone advertising-so the guy used his personal credit card)-success story but  risky.
o   VC relations-each get 10 bplans/day and limited bandwidth-LP relations, investee companies etc. hence his advice is referrals and networking
·        Typical problems
o   Cash flow most often/crucial.
o   Leverage your own network for sales
o   Social Media solution for PR issues?
o   His view that never go for half cooked(my view is that most can go like Google) and ensure back end(customer service etc)
o   Never hesitate to seek help from others for functions(making financial projections etc). Especially must for quarterly returns under tax laws.
·        Making your business plan standout in the clutter
o   Team
o   Define your market
o   Demystify your market in non technical market
o   Market Size
o   IP involved
o   Execution Ability/Past record
o   BE realistic(example 1Cr-100Cr in2yrs is ambitious)
·      Its not banks/VCs who fund your business, it is customers. So never ignore them.
·       Opening doors not only for customers, but also vendors/marketing help..hence angel money termed as smart money can help for B2C also.
·      Business plans don’t get funded people get funded. Don't ever forget that.
·      New trends of ventures-specific verticals like education, optical, health, finance etc, gaming, e-learning, healthcare

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