IILM Institute for Higher Education organized the Entrepreneurship Conference recently which was focused on the theme “Start Up India”. The Conference was aimed at highlighting how entrepreneurship is becoming bolder and more dynamic than ever before and the growing numbers of young innovative minds who want to start ventures of their own.
Some of the eminent speakers included Ritesh Malik, Founder – Innov8 Creatives, Alive App; Sandeep Oberoi, General Manager - Philips Healthcare; Raghav Verma, Cofounder – Chaayos; Rahul Sethi, Founder – ladybush.com.
The Conference started with lighting of lamp by Ritesh Malik, Founder – Innov8 Creatives, Rakesh Chaudhary, Senior Director IILM; Shivani Teckchandany, Director IILM Gurgaon; and Sandeep Oberoi, General Manager, Philips Healthcare.
Welcoming the delegates, guests, students and faculty members, Smitha Girija, Director, IILM Institute for Higher Education, highlighted IILM’s role in promoting entrepreneurship. She spoke about “Ignite” – IILM’s Incubation Centre in IILM campus at Golf Course Road, Gurgaon. With an area of 30,000 square feet, this Incubation Centre is the largest in North India. IGNITE offers excellent support infrastructure, office back up, conference facilities, cafeteria, auditorium and ample parking. She highlighted that IILM makes every effort to serve as a platform which acts as an enabler in the promotion and commercialization of viable ideas of the budding entrepreneurs.
Speakers of the opening Plenary Session were Ritesh Malik, Founder – Innov8 Creatives, Alive App and Mr. Sandeep Oberoi, General Manager, Philips Healthcare. Ritesh Malik highlighted that Entrepreneurship is about passion and perseverance and encouraged them never to give up even if the start up fails in the few initial attempts. Sandeep Oberoi stressed that it’s not just innovative ideas that bring success to an entrepreneur but also the commercial packaging of the ideas. He mentioned that entrepreneurial skills are inbuilt in a person and with proper support and initiative, one can become a successful entrepreneur.
Next session on “Creativity and Innovation – An opportunity to succeed” and was moderated by Sanjay Srivastava, Professor, IILM. The panel comprised of Rahul Sethi (Co-founder & CEO - Lady blushEcommerce);Gauri Angrish (Founder, Coral Carebook); Ishaan Sehgal (COO - Coral Carebook); Sukhmani Bedi (Co-founder, Betterbutter) and Shravani Vatti (Founder, Ardizen). This session focused on Disruptive Innovation as a key to create new markets. Rahul Sethi stressed the point that Internet is assisting the culture of entrepreneurship as it reduces the entry barriers to the process.Sukhmani Bedi expressed that it’s more recycling of thoughts and ideas in India.
The third Session on “The Investor’s perspective to a startup: What do they look for?” was coordinated by Rahul Mishra – Professor, IILM. The panel comprised of Manoj Mittal (General Manager, SIDBI), Vivek Kumar (Director, SME Joinup), Swapnil Khandelwal (Founder, Alma Connect), Shailesh Vikram Singh (Executive Director, (Seedfund Ventures) and Manik Mehta (Co-founder , Leaf Apparels). Manoj Mittal encouraged the budding entrepreneurs to take advantage of the presence of various investment opportunities in India, like SIDBI. With variety of thoughts and ideas being expressed, the speakers highlighted India at present being on the forefront on entrepreneurial roadmap. The panel members discussed the factors that are most important before making a decision to invest in a startup. They also shared their own experiences in starting their own enterprises.
The last session “The Startup’s Failure - A Roadmap to Success!” was coordinated by Shivani Teckchandany – Director, IILM Gurgaon. The panel comprised of Bharat Sethi (Founder & CEO, postergully.com), Mohit Bhakhuni (Founder, Contify), Raghav Verma (Co-founder, Chaayos) and Pranav Trikha (Co-Owner, Indwell Pharma). This session focused on the reasons responsible startups failure and how devising a good strategy can be helpful in sustaining and scaling growth. Deliberations among the panelists focused on the reasons of failure and the resilience needed from entrepreneurs to sustain. Mohit Bhakuni laid out most importance on understanding customers and their needs before establishing a startup. Bharat Sethi emphasized that analyzing the current need and right strategy is most important.
Prior to the conference, IILM conducted a “Young Entrepreneur Ideation Challenge” in which students from various prestigious schools of Delhi participated. The students had to identify a societal problem and come up with a creative solution for the same. It was heartening to see the creative thinking and innovative ideas of the young students of today. Prizes were distributed for commendable performance in this competition.