Mumbai: Cricket and health food won the game over media and technology at Bzzwings, the business plan (B-plan) showcase at IIM Bangalore (IIM-B) on 13 October.
Sarvy Sports, the prize-winning team from Vinod Gupta School of Management (VGSOM), IIT Kharagpur, sold their idea of a sports event management company to a five-member jury, which included Navin Budhiraja,chief technical officer, Amazon FPS (a subsidiary of Amazon.com) and Mahesh Murthy, managing partner, Seedfund. They were chosen from a group of nine finalists—most were student teams, with business plans in ideation stage.
Sarvy wants to set up cricket leagues for schools in New Delhi, Bangalore and Kolkata to professionalize the game. It also wants to be a one-stop shop for sports tourism, managing travel needs of cricket fans across the country.
The team, formed by Ratnakar Vellanki, Rahul Yadav and Saurabh Agarwal, will be incubated as a company at the Nadathur S. Raghavan Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning (NSRCEL), IIM-B’s on-campus incubation cell, in addition to the prize money of Rs75,000.
This is a first for IIM-B, which previously only awarded a cash prize to winners of the B-plan showcase.
Runners-up Spinache, from IIM-B, pitched the plan for a niche, low-calorie food restaurant in Bandra, Mumbai, to cater to a health-conscious, upmarket segment of the population. The team won brownie points for innovative promotional ideas, such as dinner served on board a hot air balloon. Spinache wants to set up two restaurants in the next three years. Spinache gets an interview with NSRCEL for incubation opportunities, apart from a Rs30,000 cash prize.
The showcase, which was earlier a closed door event, was thrown open to the audience this time. “We wanted to show the kind of seriousness that goes into taking the plans from ideas to implementation,” said Manoj Kumar B., senior coordinator, entrepreneurship and innovation cell, IIM-B.
Other B-plans that made it to the finals included pitches for an online book rental service, television shows to promote education and social work in rural areas. IIM-B received 250 submissions in the initial round during August and September, of which 35 were shortlisted. Nine were chosen after a further round of elimination. Each of these teams was mentored for two weeks by industry experts and venture capitalists such as Canaan Partners’ Alok Mittal, Google’s Sameer Sood and Lightspeed Venture’s Srini Vudayagiri before the event.