“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail,” Ralph Waldo Emerson, Poet.
An entrepreneur is a person who organizes, operates, and assumes the risk for a business venture. An entrepreneur is someone who believes they he/she has a good business idea and try very hard to start a business.
This entrepreneurial spirit describes the enthusiasm, excitement, initiative, commitment to the idea, the will to succeed and the dedication to the venture that is necessary to overcome the initial difficulties and demands faced by someone starting their own business.
Bangalore has had the reputation of being a technology and IT hub for a while now, and over the last few years has definitely evolved into a hub for entrepreneurs and startups as well (think Flipkart, Redbus and MakeMyTrip).
That ‘spirit’ is what has put Bangalore on global map and it now hosts 41 per cent of India’s startups. First-time entrepreneurs – many of them highly interested and proficient in various technical fields, many from outside Bangalore – are giving up the comfort of a steady job to set up small, dynamic companies that think out of the box and make you wonder “Why didn’t I think of this?”.
A thorough study of the startup ecosystems in different cities across the globe has shown that Bangalore has a strong early stage funding ecosystem, more mentors, and therefore ambitious and risky startups.
Suddenly, anyone who has an idea seems to have a company, fueling a boom in offline and online ventures in food, design, travel, fashion, healthcare and education. And what better place than “Namma Bengaluru”, whose famously cosmopolitan culture, agreeable climate and a young, enthusiastic populace provides the perfect breeding ground for original businesses.
A healthy growing set of funding options, and with a reliable IT solutions and infrastructure backbone, times have never been better for being an entrepreneur in Bangalore.
“We’re witnessing a strong thought wave here, where young and veteran professionals are looking at local problems, and exploring solutions within the city mainly through online portal systems.
RedBus’ CEO, PhanindraSama was recently selected by Endeavor magazine as a high impact entrepreneur. Phanindra took the idea to his college friends and colleagues and that was the beginning of RedBus.
It solves travel agent problems by allowing consumers to look at bus ticket availability across all the operators and book in advance, even across state boundaries.
They even give a layout of the bus seating, and allow a customer to return the ticket. RedBus has crossed the one-crore (10 Million) mark in the number of tickets sold in July 2012. It has over 2 million registered users and is rapidly approaching the $200 million gross merchandize value (GMV) mark. The company stresses a lot on keeping their costs low.
Flipkart’CEO, Sachin Bansal, a leading E-Commerce Provider in India is an IIT Delhi Alumnus. Sachin left Amazon to start Flipkart along with a friend Binny Bansal with a mere investment of Rs 4 Lakh. Today Flipkart generates Rs 1.5 Crore a day. It has a record user base of 1 Million in India only.
Myntra was established by Mukesh Bansal, Ashutosh Lawania, and Vineet Saxena in February 2007. All three are IIT alumni, and have worked for several start-ups.
The company started off in the business of personalization of products in Bangalore, and soon expanded to set up regional offices in New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai. It began its operations in the B2B (business to business) segment with the personalization of gifts, which included T-shirts, mugs and caps to name a few.
However, in 2010, the company shifted its strategy to becoming a B2C (business to customer) oriented firm, expanding its catalogue to fashion and lifestyle products.
Big basket CEO UshaMuralidhar saw early a change in the Bangalore shopper’s attitudes that few could have foretold, especially when you consider that as much as 80 per cent of their orders include perishables, such as fruits and vegetables. The entrepreneurs behind these ventures are confident that this is a sign of bigger things to come.
As commonly observed with any start-up, Hari too had his fair share of adversity. According to him, HolidayIQ.com was ahead of the curve, making the most of the crowd sourcing. He says, “The adoption of travel among the average Indian is still growing. So back in 2006 using the internet, it was very difficult to tap into the small segment of people who traveled. The whole venture capital scene was very new in India, so raising money to sustain the project was also a challenge.”
Most of the content on HolidayIQ.com is user-generated, which added to the heady concoction of challenges. But with some initial seed funding and an institutional funding round from Accel Partners, Hari and his team pulled through, and today, HolidayIQ.com reports over 50,000 reviews a month.
When asked about why he persisted with the idea, he gave us some numbers to put the Indian tourism industry in perspective. “Last year, about 3 million foreigners came to India as tourists. The number of Indians who went abroad was about 15 million. The number of travelers in India is increasing at 15% per annum. As of last year, there was 400 million trips in India alone. Whichever way you slice it, the Indian opportunity is absolutely huge.”
To conclude right attitude, proper condition and correct approach can lead to great success. Startups need to be strategic about picking the right participation and not overdoing it by entering too many ventures. The entrepreneur is widely regarded as an integral player in the business culture of Bangalore life, and particularly as a spirit engine for job creation and economic growth.