The first of a series of three workshops around entrepreneurship was held at the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, or IIT-B, last Monday, along with the launch of Ideaz ’08. Organized by the institute’s Entrepreneurship Cell, the pan-IIT business idea competition helps students turn their ideas into feasible business models.
Ideaz, a precursor to IIT-B’s business plan competition Eureka, allows people to model ideas of all sorts, ranging from new gadgets, services, websites to social initiatives. The workshop centred around a panel discussion with the theme “Inspire, Think, Create”. Panellists included Sanjeev Bikhchandani, CEO and co-founder, Info Edge (India) Ltd, Seedfund partner Mahesh Murthy and Purvi Seth, vice-president, Shilputsi Consultants.
The panellists spoke about the nuances of a business idea to an audience of over 300 students. Murthy and Bikhchandani discussed experiences from their starting up days with Naukri.com and Pinstorm, sharing the difficulties they faced and the solutions they came up with. The main objective of the session was to add perspective to the reality of starting a business, and getting the audience to think. “If this (competition) did not happen, IIT would produce more employees, but if more of it happened, it would produce more employers,” said Murthy. The mistakes and struggles, and the success of such real-life role models inspires students, motivating them to act on their ideas.
The competition concludes on 1 September. More workshops will take place at IIT-B and at other IIT campuses as well before the competition ends. For more details on the competition, visit www.ideaz.ecell.in
Neha Rambhia is a third year electrical engineering student at IIT Bombay and media manager of the institute’s Entrepreneurship Cell.