Forum: Entrepreneurship Forum
Speaker: Ms Ritu Malhotra, Mr Gaurav Sawalakhe, Mr Deepak Singh & Ms Leena Dixit
VIA Entrepreneurship Forum holds session on “Start-Ups Speak – Mantras for Success”
Entrepreneurship Forum of Vidarbha Industries Association organized a session on “Start-Ups Speak – Mantras for Success” at VIA Hall recently.
Intention of organising this session to motivate budding entrepreneurs of our region, as Nagpur has become a hub for start ups, and many of them are struggling to scale up. For an innovator, it takes more than just a million dollar idea to sustain in the competition, and this was elaborately stressed upon during a symposium Mantra for success. Four innovators and entrepreneurs from the city shared their struggles and stories with the aspiring entrepreneurs.
First speaker – Ms Ritu Malhotra & Team of ‘Ezy Spit’ recently won the coveted CII Award for Entrepreneurship; Second speaker – Mr Gaurav Sawalakhe, serial Innovator and has won several awards, including one from the Govt of Maharashtra; Third speaker – Mr Dipak Singh of ‘Orange-n-Orange, promoting orange based product and Fourth speaker – Ms Leena Dixit of ‘Native Chef’ a food portal promoting home based culinary.
Ms Ritu Malhotra, young innovator shared her story of inventing an ingenious spittoon ‘Ezy Spit’, a liquid that solidifies within ten seconds of spitting into it. Railways spends Rs.100 crore to just scrub spit stains off trains. Not just the money, spitting in public is physically hazardous since diseases like TB can spread through it. This concern drove us to make this mobile spittoon. Presently ‘Ezy Spit’ employs about 24 people in their company. She deemed hard work and finding joy in her struggles as the key to success. She said that success is possible only if you find solution to real world problems.
Another innovator Mr Gaurav Sawalakhe, who has created several creative products like an anti-radiation chip for mobiles and a car that crawls on walls, said patience is a virtue to be had in all aspiring entrepreneurs. Innovators must first identify their product as an innovation that answers an existing issue and as globally saleable. Your business will not thrive if there is no need for that Innovation to exist. Budding start-ups should also modify their product every four-live years to keep It relevant. According to Mr Sawalakhe, there are two types of innovation, one which is ‘saleable’ and the second is the one which you innovate to satisfy your passion. He said that he learnt it the hard way that only the saleable innovations sustained the market forces. He emphasized that no matter how many times you failed, you must keep trying in order to create a niche. For this one must be patient and belief in oneself.
Mr Dipak Singh, who owns a venture ‘Orange-n-Orange’, a unique dessert outlet that sells all things orange. According to him his venture has helped the farmers of Vidarbha as he has focused in orange and other by products of oranges. According to him the mantra for success is to work really hard and take calculated risks. Patience is another virtue which according to him an entrepreneur must possess. He traced his journey in how he struggled in marketing his products with the Railways and how his persistence paid off and he could scale up slowly. Singh said that it is unfortunate that people of not aware that there is a huge requirement of orange saplings in the citrus research institute, which was almost to the tune of about two lacs.
Innovator Ms Leena Dixit, who has created an online hub ‘Native Chefs’ that bring together home chefs around the city. Being a full-time working mother of two, she was constantly on-the-go. But cooking was always something that kept her connected to her roots, with her family, and that is how the idea of connecting people with their native food struck her and she developed this platform. She believes that experience is the best teacher. She said aspirants must perform an empathy study of market and take criticism positively. Any kind of feedback will only strengthen your business and avoid loopholes. Ms Leena through her venture has successfully managed to rope in many homemakers into her venture by providing them avenue for self employment . Native Chefs also aims at providing wholesome traditional food which is normally not available in the restaurants. However one has to plan the meal in advance unlike the restaurants where there is quick service of food order and delivery.
Earlier, Prof Ashit Sinha, Ex-Vice President of VIA welcomed Mr Prashant Mohota, former Vice President of VIA with floral bouquet, recently Hon’ble Vice President of India, Shri M Venkaiah Naidu, in presence of Smt Smriti Irani, Hon’ble Minister of Textiles, Govt of India conferred awards to Mr Prashant Mohota, MD – Gimatex Industries for achieving “Outstanding Young Entrepreneur in the Textile Sector” in category Yarn & Fabric.
Mr Atul Pande, President – VIA welcomed Ms Ritu Malhotra, Mr Gaurav Sawalakhe & Mr Dipak Singh and Mr Akash Agrawal, Chairman of VIA Entrepreneurship Forum welcomed Ms Leena Dixit with floral bouquets. Mr Atul Pande informed about “Navin Project” and said this will be beneficial for start-ups, who really enthusiastic to start their any business venture. Mr Akash Agrawal, Chairman, Entrepreneurship Forum in his welcome address said India is poised to be the fastest economy in the coming years and getting jobs in any organizations is getting more and more difficult for passed out students, if qualified people think of self-employed, which will not only help to develop in business activities but create jobs for others also. Ms Anita Rao, Convener of VIA Entrepreneurship Forum conducted the proceedings and also introduced the speakers. Prof. Ashit Sinha, Ex-Vice President of VIA proposed a formal vote of thanks. Prominently present were Dr Suhas Buddhe, and many industry representatives.
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