Tag Archives: csi

CSI Pune Lecture: Security Testing Using Models – 16 Jan 6:30pm


What: CSI Pune Lecture on Security Testing Using Models with Prof. Padmanabhan Krishnan, Bond University, Australia.
When: Friday, 16th Jan, 6:30pm-8:30pm
Where: Dewang Mehta Auditorium, Persistent, S.B. Road
Registration and Fees: Free for CSI/ISACA members; Rs. 50 for students & Persistent employees; others Rs. 100. Register at http://csi-pune.org

In this, we present a framework based on model based testing for security vulnerabilities testing. Security vulnerabilities are not only related to security functionalities at the application level but are sensitive to implementation details. Thus traditional model based approaches which remove implementation details are by themselves inadequate for testing security vulnerabilities. We demonstrate a framework that retains the advantages of model based testing that exposes only the necessary details relevant for vulnerability testing.

Our framework has three sub-models: a model or specification of the key aspects of the application, a model about the relevant aspects of the implementation and a model of the attacker. These three models are them combined to generate test cases. The same approach can also be used to test if a system meets a privacy policy.

Who Should Attend: Professionals interested in Test Automation and students.

About the Speaker – Padmanabhan Krishnan

Prof. Krishnan is a Professor at the Centre for Software Assurance, School of IT, Bond University, Australia. He also holds a research associate position at the United Nations University, International Institute for Software Technology. He got his BTech from IIT-Kanpur and MS and PhD from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. His interests are in model based testing, verification techniques and practical formal methods for software assurance. He has held positions in the USA, Denmark, New Zealand, Germany and Australia.

Update: The slides of the talk are now available. Click here if you can not see the slides below.

Security Testing Using Models

View SlideShare presentation or Upload your own. (tags: security bond)

Related Articles

CSI Pune Workshop: Introduction to Agile/SCRUM – Saturday 6th December

What: CSI Pune’s introductory workshop on Agile/SCRUM
When: Saturday, December 6th, 2008, 3:00pm to 6:-0pm
Where: BMC Software, S.B. Road, 5th Floor Tower A, ICC Tech Park, Senapati Bapat Road, Pune, Maharashtra 411016
Entry: Free for CSI Members, Rs. 100 for others, Rs. 50 for BMC employees. Register here.

Details – What is SCRUM?

What exactly is Agile – and which Agile? What is Scrum? The growing evidence base that Agile project methods deliver value faster and with higher quality is all well and good. However, if you and/or your organisation have little or no Agile experience – deciding where to start can be quite daunting.

Scrum is the fastest growing Agile methods which is increasingly being used by IT and non-IT organizations worldwide. Introduced to the world in 1996, Scrum has become the foremost Agile methodology for IT giants like Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, Verizon etc.

Benefits of the workshop provides participants with a top-level overview of Scrum and a balanced appreciation of the different Agile methodologies.

Delegates will take away with them a clear understanding of whether Scrum is ‘right’ for their organization, its pros and cons and those of the different methodologies.

Participants will have ample opportunity to ask questions and interact with the presenters in order to relate Scrum to their own organizations. They will also be provided with onward knowledge and learning resource sources.

Who Should Attend

  • Business managers
  • Program Managers
  • Project Managers
  • Software Development Managers
  • Software managers
  • Software Quality Managers
  • Developers and Testers


15 minutes: Registration

30 minutes: Introduction : How did Agile arise? What is Agile? Where is Agile Now? The Emergence of Scrum

45 minutes: SCRUM Breeze-through

15 minutes: Tea Break

30 minutes: Comparison and Summary of Leading methods with Scrum

  • SCRUM Comparative Strengths
  • XP Comparative Strengths
  • DSDM Comparative Strengths
  • The common aspects

30 minutes: Panel Discussion / Q & A

  • Selection of context?
  • Do different contexts favour different methods?

There are a lot of other tech activities going on in Pune in the next few weeks. Check out the PuneTech calendar for details.

Data management and data quality in business intelligence

I am liveblogging CSI Pune‘s lecture on Data Management and Data Quality in Business Intelligence, by Ashwin Deokar of SAS R&D Pune.

Huge amounts of data being generated these days. Different technologies (from databases, to RFID tags and GPS units), different platforms (PCs, servers, cellphones), different vendors. And all this data is often duplicated and inconsistent. All of this data needs to be collected in one place, and cleaned up?

Why? Three reasons:

  • Competitive business environment: With better, and more granular data, you can increase your profits, and reduce costs. For example, Walmart forcing RFID tags on all items that are supplied to them by suppliers – and tracking their locations for very accurate and up-to-date inventory control
  • Regulatory and Compliance requirements: e.g. US government has seriously strict data gathering and storage requirements for hospitals (HIPAA). If you can’t generate this data, you go to jail. That certainly reduces your ability to increase profits.
  • Adherence to Industry standards: If you can’t produce and consume data in the format that everybody else understands, you can’t play with the big boys

The key areas of study in this area are:

  • Data governance: Policies that govern the use of data in an organization. Done usually from the point of view of increasing data security (prevent hackers from getting in, prevent data from leaking out inadvertently), ensuring compliance with regulations, and optimal use of data for organizational growth.
  • Data architecture and design: Overall architecture – data storage, ETL process design, BI architecture, etc.
  • Database management: Since there are huge quantities of data, making a mistake here will pretty much doom the whole project to failure through overload. Which database? Optimizing the performance. Backup, recovery, integrity management, etc.
  • Data security: Who should have access? Which data needs to be kept private?
  • Data quality: Lots of work needed to ensure that there is a single version of the truth in the data warehouse. Especially difficult for non-transactional data (i.e. data that is not there in a database). e.g. Ashwin Deokar is the same as A.P. Deokar. Need fancy software that will do these transformations on the data.
  • Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence: What this component does is covered in a previous PuneTech article.

Data Quality. Why this is an important problem:

  • 96000 IRS tax refund cheques did not get delivered because of incorrect addresses.
  • An acquiring company, which acquired another company mainly for the customer base found that the acquisition was vastly overvalued – because the got 50% fewer customers than expected. Due to duplicates in the database.
  • A cable company lost $500,000 because a mislabeled shipment resulted in a cable being laid at a wrong location.
  • A man defrauded a CD company by taking their “introductory” offer (of free CDs) over 1600 times, by registering that many different accounts with different address. Since he did not really have that many different addresses, he managed to fool their computers by making slightly different address using minor changes like extra punctuation marks, fictitious apartment numbers, slightly different spellings, etc. Total damage: $250,000.

There is a process, combination of automated algorithms, and human assistance to help with improving data quality. And it is not just about duplicate data, or incorrect data. You also need to worry about missing data. And fetching it from the appropriate “other” sources.

What do you do?

  • Clean up your data by standardizing it using rules – have canonical spellings for names, addresses, e etc.
  • Use fancy algorithms to detect duplicates which are obvious by just looking at the strings. For example, “IBM” and “International Business Machines” do not look similar. But if they have the same address, same number of employees, etc., then you can say they are the same. (And you can have thresholds that adjust the sensitivity of this matching process.)
  • Use external data to clean up the data for de-duplication. For example, US Postal service publishes a CD of every valid address in the US. Businesses buy that CD and use that to convert all their address data to this standard format. That will result in major de-duplication.

SAS provides tools for all the steps in this process. And since it has all the pieces, it has the advantage of ensuring that there is a single meta-data repository for all the steps in this process – which is a huge advantage. SAS has the best ETL tools. It also exists in analytics, and BI. It has OLAP capabilities, but it really excels in business intelligence applications.

SAS R&D Pune has engineers working on various core products that are used in this area – meta-data, ETL, BI components. It also has a consulting group that helps companies deploy SAS products and use them – and that ends up working on all the parts of the data management / data quality process.

CSI Lecture: Data Management for Business Intelligence

Computer Society of India – Pune Chapter presents the second lecture in a series on Data warehousing. The first lecture gave an overview of BI and DW. The second lecture was about how these techniques are used by businesses. This is the third in the series:

What: Data Management for Business Intelligence by Ashwin Deokar of SAS R&D India.

When: Wednesday, November 19th, 2008, 6:30pm to 8:30pm
Where: Dewang Mehta Auditorium, Persistent Systems, Senapati Bapat Road
Entry: Free for CSI Members, Rs. 100 for others. Register here.

Details – Data Management for Business Intelligence

This lecture will cover the various issues in Data Management of Business Intelligence solutions: Why is Data management and data quality important, What is Data management, Components of Data management, Factors affecting Data management, Key Challenges in Data management, Data Quality, Data Quality process

It is not necessary to have attended the previous lecture.

For more information about other lectures in this series, and in general other tech events in Pune, see the PuneTech events calendar.

About the speaker – Ashwin Deokar

Ashwin is working as a business unit head with SAS R&D Pune. Heading the OnDemand Solution group. Ashwin has over 10 year of experience in ERP, DW, BI & Analytics across multiple domains like manufacturing, CPG, Retail, Banking & Insurance. He has been with SAS for 6 years under various roles like Project Manager, Senior Consultant, Business Unit head.

Liveblogging CSI Pune Lecture: Applications of Business Intelligence

I am liveblogging CSI Pune‘s lecture on Applications of Business Intelligence by Narender C.V. of SAS R&D India. These are quick and dirty notes of the lecture – not intended to be a well organized article, but hopefully it gives you enough of a flavor for the area to get you interested and excited enough to check it out on google and wikipedia.

The amount of data is doubling every 11 months. And we have easier and easier access to all this data from all over the world. The problem is making sense of all this data. The amount of time at our disposal remains the same. So we have to use sophisticated software and algorithms to figure out how to use this data to improve business and efficiency. That is Business Intelligence (BI).

This talk is the second in a series of talks on BI. PuneTech covered the first talk which gave an overview of BI and data warehousing. This lecture focuses on who uses BI and why. A major portion of this talk will be a bunch of examples of use of BI in real companies. So on to the examples:

Example 1: Getting a better grip on Reality (i.e. Seeing problems earlier)

First case study will focus on using BI to simply get a good picture of the situation as it exists. Seeing Reality. Last year, US based companies paid $28 billion in servicing warranties or recalls. This is money you don’t really want to spend. Biggest problem in this is identifying these problems as early as possible. Seeing reality early. Typically, an issue first appears. A little while later, the issue becomes visible to the company, and it is prioritized. Later it is “defined” and decisions taken by the decision makers. Finally the issue is resolved, and money paid out. A study by SAS shows that the “detect” part of this cycle takes about 90 days, the prioritize part takes 20 days, and the define part takes 75 days. That’s a total of 185 days to fix the problem.

A business intelligence system helps to reduce each phase of that sequence because of better data gathering and statistical analysis. This results in 27 days detection, 5 days, prioritization and 46 days to prioritize, for a total of 78 days. This is a huge improvement, and each day saved results in money saved.

How is this done? First simple reports: defects per thousand, per product. Dashboard with easy to see defect reports. Then a library of reports that various people in the company can use easily to see and analyze defects and warranty claims. Then a statistical analysis engine to detect “emerging issues”. Use algorithms that can detect, from early trends, issues that are likely to become “big” later on. Text mining and analysis to read unstructured reports of service technicians and being able to determine, simply by looking at the keywords, which product or part or defect was the cause of that particular incident. And there are other analytics, like forecasting and trend analysis that are used. Bottomline? Shanghai GM was able to reduce detection and definition time by 70%, resulting in reduction of costs by 34%. Which is pretty cool for simply running a bunch of mathematical algorithms.

Example 2: Manage and Align Resources to Strategy

Everybody agrees that it is important for a company to have a strategy. And that everyone should understand and execute according to that strategy. Obvious?

This is a reality based on a survey: Only 5% of the workforce of a large company understand the company strategy. Only 25% of the managers were incentivized based on the strategy. 60% of organizations do not link budgets to the strategy. 86% of executive teams spend less than one hour per month discussing strategy.

How can BI help in this case?

It is possible to define objectives for each person/team in the company. Then it is possible to define how this objective can/should be measured. Then BI software can be used to capture and analyze this data, and figure out how everybody is contributing to the end objectives of the business.

Example 3: Retail Optimization

The problem to be solved. Need to stock the exact quantity that people are going to buy. Stock too much and you lose money on unsold items. Order too little and you get out-of-stock situations and lose potential profits. Need to be able to forecast demand. Optimize which sizes/assortments to stock. All of you must have an experience of going to a shop, liking an item, and not having that available in your size. Sale lost. Profit lost. Can this loss be reduced?

Use BI for this. In case study, a department store sent the same mix of different sizes to all stores. SAS did clustering of stores, to create 7 different sub-groups that have different size mixes for each sub-group of stores.

Example 4: Personalized, real-time marketing

Take the example of marketing. Consider a traditional marketing mail sent from a company. Customers hate that and the success rate is a pathetic 3% or so. That’s just stupid, but exists when there is no alternative. Better is event based marketing. When you do something, it triggers a marketing push from the company. This is often convenient for the customer, and has a 20% success rate. But the best is customer initiated interaction which has a 40% success rate.

Note that as you go down that list, it gets more difficult to quickly, in real time, determine what marketing message exactly to push to the customer. If you call a pizza delivery place and they point out that that they have a buy-one-get-one-free offer, it might or might not be interesting for you. Better would be an offer focused specifically on your needs. Use BI to analyze individual customers and forecast their needs and then tailor the offer for you. An offer you cannot refuse.

Another example. Customer puts digital camera in online shopping cart. The online shopping software contacts the BI system for offers to push to customer. It looks at customer history. Figures out that customer is non-tech savvy customer who buys high-end products. Also, customer’s demographic information is consulted, and finally some accessories are suggested. Since this is very specific recommendation, this can result in a high chance of being accepted. This significantly increases profit on this transaction.

Example 5: Understanding Customers

Mobile company, simplistic view: Customer is leaving. Offer them a lower value plan. The might or might not leave. BI gives you better tools. Cost is not the only thing to play with. Understand why people are leaving, and also understand the effect of them leaving on your business. (Sometimes it might be best to let them leave.) And based on this, determine the best course of action – what / how much to offer them.

First, use predictive analysis to get an estimate of how much profit you are going to make from a customer over the course of next N years based on the data you have gathered about them so far. Use this figure, the “customer value”, to drive decisions on how much effort to expend on trying to get this customer to stay. Forget the low value customers, and focus on the high value ones!

Another possibility. If you have marketing money to spend on giving offers to some customers. Let us say there are 3 different kinds of offers. Use BI analysis to figure out which offers to send to which customers, based on customer value, and also chances of customer accepting that offer. This optimizes the use of the “offer” dollars.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

CSI Lecture: Applications of Business Intelligence – 16th Oct

Computer Society of India – Pune Chapter presents the second lecture in a series on Data warehousing. The first lecture gave an overview of BI and DW. The second lecture will describe how these techniques are used by businesses:

What: Applications of of Business Intelligence  by Narendar C.V. of SAS R&D India.

When: Thursday, October 16th, 2008, 6:30pm to 8:30pm
Where: Dewang Mehta Auditorium, Persistent Systems, Senapati Bapat Road
Entry: Free for CSI Members, Rs. 100 for others. Register here.

Details – Overview of BI & Data warehousing

This lecture will cover the various applications of Business Intelligence solutions. These include Customer Intelligence, solutions specific to Industries and also will touch upon real time BI applications. Narender will explore the value and use of advanced Business Intelligence, areas such as Performance Management, Customer Management and Analytics: forecasting, data mining and Optimization. He’ll present examples of advanced business Intelligence methods and uses, and suggest ways companies can implement and incorporate these types of analysis. He will also discuss ways to measure the success and ROI. 

If you’ve always wanted to know why, how and when you should be using advanced BI, you won’t want to miss this!

It is not necessary to have attended the previous lecture.

For more information about other lectures in this series, and in general other tech events in Pune, see the tech events calendar at upcoming.

About the speaker – Narender C.V.

Narender is a Principal Consultant at SAS. He currently spearheads the Solution development for the Retail & Manufacturing Solution.

The next wave of entrepreneurship in India

Monish Darda, Director of Product Development at BMC BladeLogic and co-founder of WebSym, wrote an article on the next wave of entrepreneurship in India for CSI Pune’s quarterly newsletter Desktalk. Parts of that article have been reproduced here with permission. You should be able to download the the newsletter (contain the full article) from CSI Pune website’s download section. (It’s the July-Aug-Sept 2008 newsletter.)

So let us take a look at tomorrow’s entrepreneur – I tend to see him (or her – the masculine is just convenience) in two colors – Mr E the risk taker, and Mr E, the man with the plan. Tomorrow’s risk taker is a person fresh out of college, with a few like-minded close friends and a couple of mentors, who want to do the next cool thing. The man with the plan is a youngish guy, probably back from the USofA, his future secured, with a plan that will leverage India for his next successful startup. Is anyone building up a services company? Well, yes and no. What I see in the future is services sold as a product. One in three entrepreneurs are going to be thinking about leveraging the labor cost differential at the low end of the value chain along with innovation that takes the returns to the high end of the value chain.

I see social networking sites that will spawn with better ideas in India, quickly gaining eyeballs, cheaper and faster than anywhere else except China perhaps. I see quicker and richer integration of media, with infotainment at the core. Indian entrepreneurs will be driving mid range technology applications with a larger audience and higher success rates. You saw youtube and facebook become the rage and build value worth billions in a short span of time – hold your breath for the Indian versions; they are not too far away in the future.

I see mobile middle-ware and products – if every other Indian is going to have a mobile phone soon, the apps are not far away. Indian apps, in Indian languages, closer to the Indian psyche, driven by Indian technology entrepreneurs. And it is not far in the future that we will have our own Nokias and Sonys and Ericssons – hardware is sure to follow.

I am not a betting person, but if I were, I would be betting on small, consumer shareware coming out of India in the near future – apps for the phone, the iPhone and the PC, that makes practical use of the now ubiquitous personal computer. I see enterprise software being developed in India, owned in India, but still managed and sold principally outside India. The entrepreneurs are going to be eyeing the small, high volume software for cash market, where services coupled with technology vying to increase the quality of life.

How will Technology Entrepreneurship benefit India?

My bet on the man with the plan is that he will drive the “real” technology – high tech technology creation and adaptation for grand socio-economic experiments, for logistics and the growing manufacturing industry; selling to corporates, multi-nationals and governments. He will be the guy attracting large investments and innovation dependent on infrastructure.

We are culturally a very adaptable, and very tolerant, people – the technology infusion of the future is going to bring about sweeping social change; most of which has already started. Look at what we did with the mobile phone – with SMS and the “missed calls” syndrome. We adapted the technology to suit our way of working, and kept driving costs to the ground. We will keep doing that with automobiles, phones, software, nuclear power and any other technology that we adapt as our own. We are very good at converting luxuries to needs, and that to me is key – the future of the Indian entrepreneur is dependent on this one factor. And I think this mass market has the potential to make billionaires out of ordinary people, with the spark to adapt and profit. And I believe with all its perceived ineptness, corruption and mismanagement, the government is somehow going to be the catalyst to make this happen, believe it or not. Perhaps all the impossible traffic and the constant load-shedding is already starting an entrepreneur somewhere on the road to his empire …

About the Author – Monish Darda

Monish is Director, Product Development at BMC BladeLogic. He set up the India operations of Storability Software, an East coast storage startup and was heading the group at Sun Microsystems when Storability underwent two acquisitions.

Monish is also the cofounder and Director of Websym Technologies.

He did his Master’s at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, FL. He has architected large systems in the areas of customer acquisition, manufacturing and finance on J2EE and Microsoft platforms. He has also shared his experience in leading technologies in implementation and design through mentoring programs for senior developers and designers in top national and international software houses. He has implemented innovative processes and tools for distributed design and development across the US and Europe

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Career Guidance Workshop by CSI PUne

Career Guidance Workshop 2008

Following last years hugely successful career guidance workshop, the Computer Society of India, Pune Chapter is organizing yet another program to help young professionals (freshers) and students.
Looking at the current trend, students and freshers are always looking for brighter opportunities and want to do something “different”. To help such students and freshers, we have organized a Career Guidance Workshop, where experienced industry leaders will talk about different domains, and opportunities in those domains. Whether you want to learn something new, or are seriously looking for a job, this workshop will definitely help you. There are two parts of this workshop. One, which talks about alternate and upcoming technologies, and the second, which talks about IT in the non-IT fields. Students and freshers usually have a limited view of the scope and trends in the industry. Through this workshop, we want to help students gain a better understanding of various domains, and provide them some direction, which might eventually help them choose a bright career.

Here is an outline of the program.

Date: 11th October 2008
Venue: Dewang Mehta Auditorium,Persistent Systems Ltd.’Bhageerath’,  402, Senapati Bapat Road, Pune 411016

Time: 3pm to 7pm

Program Details:

Registration: 3.00 to 3.30 p.m.

Panel 1 – Alternate Technologies – Panel coordinator – Monish Darda (3.30pm to 5:00pm)

Technology Suggested speaker
Rich Internet Applications Ramesh Shrinivasraghavan – Adobe
Gaming Ninad Chaya – Jump games
Open Source Amit Kale – LinSysSoft
Mobile Application Vishwesh Jirgale – Azingo
GIS Dr. Rao- Lavasa

Tea Break: 5:00pm to 5.30pm

Panel 2 – IT in non-IT Panel co-ordinator – Anand Paranjape (5.30pm to 7pm)

Industry Suggested speaker
Eng./ Manufacturing Kishore Daryanani – Alfa Laval
Automobile Anil Khopkar (Bajaj)
Life science Image Informatics Abhi Gholap (Optra systems)
Science Amit Dangle (Indo Global)

Charges: Rs. 100 for non-CSI members and Rs. 50 for CSI members. To register, head to

Liveblogging CSI Pune’s Entrepreneurship Seminar

I’m at CSI Pune‘s Entrepreneurship Seminar. Please forgive the haphazardness and lack of flow/organization. I’m liveblogging. Hopefully, better structured articles will emerge after a few days.

Arrived late and missed Anand Deshpande’s Keynote address.

What do VCs look for

Manik Arora, Founder and Managing Director of IDG Ventures India is talking about how to approach a VC. How they decide who to fund.

How to contact a VC.
Don’t call or send email without any introduction. VCs like to hear about you from someone they trust. A customer, ideally. Or a known successful entrepreneur, seed investor, etc. Otherwise they have no idea how seriously to take you.

Also, ideally, a VC who is going to invest a huge amount of money in you, likes to feel that he knows you. So, he would be much more comfortable investing if he’s known you for an year or two. Which means that you should meet and interact with VCs even if you are not looking for funding. You don’t want funding right now, but an year from now, when you are looking, and if you’ve been “hanging out” with that VC for a while, he will feel much more comfortable.

The Business Plan
Is important. It’s main purpose is to ensure that VC wants to meet you. Should contain the:

  • Elevator pitch
  • Vision and Mission statement
  • Market and Industry Environment – Size, Segment, Growth, Issues/Trends
  • Value Proposition, Key Products/Services and Sustainable Differentiation
  • Competition strengths and weaknesses and Entry Barriers
    • Most Indian Business Plans don’t have this.
    • If this section is done really well, VC gets quickly interested.
    • Shows that you are a sophisticated business person, as opposed to a techie.
  • Business Model and Sales/Marketing Strategy
    • What is the revenue driver, and what is the cost drivers
  • Market Traction Achieved so far
    • This is hard for early stage investors
    • So you probably don’t have much, but important to show speed with which you got there
  • Management Team Bios/Details
  • Organization Structure
  • Financials – Historical Actuals, Forecasts; Cash Flow + P&L
  • Exit Options – Names, Comparables, Price Paid, Multiples
  • Capital Required – How much, for what, over what timeframe
  • Risks and Gaps – What could go wrong, what don’t you have

Details available at http://idgvcindia.com

Do you need experience? Yes.
Start in a large company, so you know what business is about, what process is about, and also what are weaknesses of a big business, that you can exploit.

The Pitch/First Meeting: “Credibility”

Preparation before the meeting

  • Show up a little early. (You’ll be surprised at how many people come late.)
  • Dress appropriately. 
  • Have practiced your pitch a couple of times. 
  • Have a presentation ready / bring a couple of print-outs

During the meeting

  • Don’t try to only make your points – listen to them too
  • Answer questions directly
  • Ask the VC questions – gauge the VCs knowledge and style. It is fine to decide that you don’t like the VC and would not want to work with him
  • Discuss the deal briefly, don’t worry about valuation/dilution just yet
  • Towards the end, ask the VC the process going forward 
  • Towards the end, ask the VC how he can add value
  • Leave with next-steps clear and follow-up if you think this is a VC you want to take money from

Panel Discussion

Moderator is Madhukar Bhatia of nFactorial Software. Panelists are Manik Arora of IDG Ventures (whose talk forms the top half of this article), Yoshima Somvanshi of NEN (National Entrepreneurship Network), Sandeep Kumar, MD of Product Dossier, Vishwas Mahajan, CEO of CompuLink, Ajay Phatak, MD of Jopasana, Rajeevlochan Phadke (CEO of Image Point Technologies, a very interesting company that I hope to write about in a separate post). 

What environment is needed for successful startups?

Manik: A risk-taking society is a must. A person must be willing to take a risk. His in-laws must be OK with this decision. People must be willing to fund him – angel, seed, VC. Another problem with startups in India is that biggest market, US is too far away. Having a large domestic market is key – and that is slowly growing. CIOs in India are now willing to buy locally. Must have large feeder companies, where people can be part of growth and experience it, and learn from it, and find co-founders at. 

Ajay: In the “risk taking society” an important ingredient is also risk taking customers.

Sandeep: Customers are not willing to trust Indian startups. Can’t be sure the company will be around after 10 years. And this isn’t just the customer’s problem, because success stories are not there.

Vishwas: Early advice he got: He had an idea, and went to someone for funding. Was told: don’t come to me until you have 5 customers. That will teach you a whole bunch of things. And you will be taken more seriously. You don’t know all the real requirements and complexities until you have real customers.

What are the trends?

Manik: I don’t look at trends anymore. Look at the team. For example, everybody thinks web is hot in India now. But the last time the web was hot, about 25 to 30 companies got funded, and only 4 or 5 are still around. And now if you see, most of the top 15 websites in the world are actually platform companies. What can you do that would really be new and interesting?

Students in Startups (How to attract people to startups, and retain them)

Yoshima: NEN just had a startup jobs program. In some college in Delhi they had a placement day just for startups. 25 jobs where offered and 18 were accepted. One of the things that worked well is the fact that students did internships with startups, and got an idea that the work is interesting.

(Very cool, I think we should try something like this in Pune -navin)

Manik: I see lots of people in Wipro who work 14-15 hour days. And salary is less than what the market pays. So why do they all stick around? Apparently, the answer lies in Premji’s philosophy – whenever a guy is 60 to 70% ready for the next level in the job, he is pushed into that responsibility. They are too busy with their responsibilities to worry about leaving.

CSI Pune Seminar on Entrepreneurship (Thu, 25th Sept)

What: CSI-Pune‘s seminar on entrepreneurship

Date and Time: 2 pm to 6 pm on 25-Sep-2008  

Where: Hall No. 4, A Wing, MCCIA Trade Tower, 5th Floor, ICC  Complex, Senapati Bapat Road, Pune 411 016

Registration: This event is free for all, but please register at www.csipune.org.


Today many professionals are aspiring to be entrepreneurs – mainly to get more job satisfaction, a sense of great accomplishment and personal financial gain. Entrepreneurship is often a difficult undertaking – especially so in IT business because there are rapid technological advances and significant competition. This seminar is aimed at featuring some “high-profile” entrepreneurs to share their experiences and provide valuable advice to aspiring entrepreneurs, provide inputs regarding raising of venture capital and discuss on how to build an entrepreneurial ecosystem.





2:00 pm – 2:30 pm Registration  
2:30 pm – 2:40 pm Inauguration and release of CSINewsletter  
2:40 pm – 3:20 pm Keynote address Dr. Anand Deshpande (MD & CEO, Persistent Systems) / Dr. Srikanth Sundarrajan (COO, Persistent Systems)
3:20 pm – 4:00 pm Approaching VCs – How they decide who to fund Manik Arora (Founder and Managing Director, IDG Ventures)
4:00 pm – 4:15 pm Tea Break  
4:15 pm – 4:55 pm “Scaling Company successfully -> from Automated Securities to SunGard India” Harsh Barve (Vice Chairman, SunGard India)
5:00 pm – 6:00 pm Panel discussion – building an entrepreneurial ecosystem and helping bridge the perceived gaps as brought out by the VC ·                      Manik Arora (Founder and Managing Director, IDG Ventures)   

·                      Yoshima Somvanshi, Sr. Associate Consultant, National Entrepreneurship Network (NEN)


·                      Vishwas Mahajan (CEO – Compulink)

·                      Rajeevlochan Phadke (CEO – Image Point Technologies)

·                      Sandeep Kumar (MD, ProductDossier)

·                      Ajay Phatak (MD, Jopasana, a CoreObjects company)

·      Panel coordinatorMadhukar Bhatia (nFactorial Software, formerly VP at Symphony Services and Founder of In-Reality Software)


Related links: