“There are those who lead the path that was already created and some just tread on their own sand trails.”
From IITs to IIMs, young graduates these days have chosen to be self-employed rather than being an employee in some huge MNC and earning an assured salary in lakhs and crores. Startups have been booming on both online and offline media throughout the nation. An innovative business idea and the will to turn it into reality is what you need to set up your own enterprise.
Let’s for once not measure the effectiveness of an enterprise on the basis of its short term profitability but take into account the creativity quotient it entails. Here are some innovative ventures that took place in the country:
There are enough platforms like OLX, Quikr, etc. to sell your old used stuff, but ever thought about selling digital content? .Based out of Mumbai and California, Instamojo has more than 4,300 sellers and backed by angel investors like Rajan Anandan, Sunil Kalra and the likes. Anyone can go to their website, create a link for a product, service or event and send it across to prospective buyers or simply embed them on their website and start collecting payments. The procedure is as simple as it sounds!
Interviewstreet is an online platform to conduct mock interviews for campus in the colleges. It conducts online programming tests for companies that want to hire software programmers. After being selected by the world’s most respected startup accelerator programme, Y Combinator, Interviewstreet is today the platform of choice for over 1,000 small and large companies (including Microsoft, Facebook, Amazon and Yahoo!).
Founded by a bunch of IIT-IIM and MDI alumni, Zostel is a backpacker hostel chain currently operational in various cities like New Delhi, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Goa, etc. The company offers travelers rooms at budgets of INR 500 a day and has managed to get good traction. Instilling a fresh breath in the startup ecosystem that steers away from the usual IIT-IIM alumni building apps or technology products, revenues and profits of the firm have been soaring since its inception.
The business idea behind Zomato is as innovative as their posters are. A restaurant search service providing in-depth information for over 201,700 restaurants in 40 cities across 11 countries, Zomato’s core content features include menus, photos and geocoded coordinates for restaurants. Users can post reviews, ratings and the follow other users’ recommendations through the mobile app. The company has been growing seamlessly and is now present in 19 countries like Brazil, Canada, Indonesia, Ireland etc.
Even though the thought of coming up with your own new startup seems very lucrative at first, there are certain obstructions especially in the Indian scenario which every aspiring entrepreneur has to face.
-With so many laws and regulations in the statutes, compliance of which takes about 30 days makes obtaining necessary permissions for setting up new enterprises a tough task.
-Moreover, the government’s role has so far been limited to giving out grants and loans. Capital and access to capital has been a perennial problem for startups. While, of late angel investors, venture capital and private equity have brought succor to some extent, a large number of startups still rely on banks and other financial institutions.
-Most importantly, culturally we are not groomed to fail and failure is frowned upon. Risk and profits go hand in hand. So, one should be prepared for the worst before he actually transforms his business idea into a startup reality.
In spite of all the hurdles that one may encounter, being an entrepreneur is what the youth is looking forward to these days. Only if the business environment proves to be more facilitative, financial institutions more supportive and the society more motivating, who knows we might actually see more Ambanis and Tatas budding in every other Indian household.
Image Courtesy: Google Images
By Vaibhav Agarwal