What is common among Phanindra Sama, Sachin Bansal, Kunal Bahl, Rohit Bansal and Peyush Bansal? They saw a problem or a gap in the industry and solved it with the solution provided by their startups. Redbus.in, Flipkart.com, Snapdeal.com and Lenskart.com are the result of converting innovative ideas into business plans.
1. For a successful startup firstly it is essential to convert innovative ideas/experiences into a business plan which has the potential to disrupt the industry. The founders of Grey orange robotics had a successful experience of building robots for classroom projects while they were students at BITS, Pilani. In 2009, they decided to convert this learning into a first -of-its-kind venture for the Indian logistics industry. Their start-up builds robots that can move shelves stacked with various products to a floor assistant. After the assistant scans a bar code to confirm the right items, the robot moves the chosen products to the shipping bay where packaging takes place for transport.
2. Secondly make a team of people you can work with, whom you can trust and who share your thoughts. With a good team or partner there is an increased potential to grow and succeed. Try to include people with industry experience who could assist you. Little did the three graduates of Model engineering college know that after they parted ways in the year 2000 for corporate careers they would reunite after a decade and start an institution-based networking portal called 4th Ambit?
3. Thirdly it is important to know the market. It is necessary to do a diligent market research and understand customer preferences. Also understand who the target customers are for your product or service and where to find them. The founders of Reportbee have found a unique target customer segment in government and corporation schools. Reportbee provides interactive digital report card for teachers to track the performance of students. The startup is piloting in five Chennai Corporation schools and 64 government schools in Tamil Nadu. The startup has undertaken three data analysis projects for Tamil Nadu Government Education Department.
4. As a startup fourthly it is needed to be prepared to learn on the go and continuously improve. In 2010 Kunal Bahl originally launched Snapdeal.com as an online deals site and was often touted as India’s answer to Groupon. But in 2011 they realized that the online retail growth was in products and not services. They gradually scaled down service deals and reinvented themselves as a marketplace model and are today one of the leading e-retail sites.
5. Lastly be ready to weather tough times in the initial phase. Only the ones who can weather the initial stages will succeed. For Abhibus.com the first year of operations was full of challenges. The founder Sudhakar Chirra had a hard time convincing the bus operators to provide a ticket quota for AbhiBus.com. For the first four months of 2007 he could not sell a single ticket. It was in January 2008 when he got his first breakthrough. Their software had helped integrate the bookings of several bus operators. Their solutions cater to the entire bandwidth of the industry, ranging from government and private operators to individual travelers. They have also enabled the vehicle tracking solutions system for the Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation.
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