Tag Archives: mentoring

Startup Leadership Program Pune, Last date to apply: 31 July

The third Pune batch of the Startup Leadership Program (SLP) will run from September 2014 to March 2015, and they’re looking for startup founders who’re interested in joining. The last date to apply is 1st August.

SLP is a weekend course for startup founders that runs over 6 months (total of 60-hours). It is a volunteer driven program and the “training” is provided by successful entrepreneurs. SLP does not take any equity from the founder for this course – but they do charge some fees (Rs. 12000 this year) to recover their costs for running the program. This is the third batch in Pune – the first batch ran in 2012 and the class had 21 founders.

SLP Pune’s Program leaders are: Sujata Bogawat (Director – Advantage Business Consulting), Abhishek Ballabh (Co-founder, ExtraAEdge.com), Koustubh Naik (Founder, Periwinkle Technologies), Tushar Komawar (Founder, Bharat Endeavours), Vinay Nathan (CEO and Co-founder, Altizon Systems).

SLP bills itself as a selective, world-class training program for entrepreneurs who want to become top startup CEOs. Pune SLP Fellows will build a life-long network with a group of outstanding founders, and connect with a growing community of business partners, experts, advisors and investors. The program kicks off in September 2014, with 10 Saturday all day classes.

SLP was founded in Boston, USA and now runs in 21 cities in 10 different countries. In all, SLP fellows have founded 700 companies that have raised $370 million from the world’s and include startups like Ixigo, DeliveryChef, NatureBox, SideTour, Micello, Momelan, Novira, Runkeeper, Sharypic, Schooladmissions, Shareaholic, Solar Junction, Voicetap and Ubersense. 10 startups founded by our Fellows have been acquired including Savored (Groupon), TomNod (Digital Globe), Kaptur (Aha Life), Momelan (Kinetic Concepts) and Fondu (airbnb).

Here is the pitch for why you should consider joining SLP from PuneTech’s article about SLP when it was first launched in Pune in 2012.

Startup Leadership Program is a NOT FOR PROFIT entity, registered in US and INDIA. What will entrepreneurs get out of SLP?

  • Avoid entrepreneurial mistakes – as you learn from your peer group (that comprises of entrepreneurs from different background) and mentors (serial entrepreneurs, VCs, bankers, etc) and experts.
  • Get solutions to your growth challenges – as you get feedback from super peer group and mentors.
  • Connect to VCs/Investors and raise funding. Make real-life pitches.Understand what VC looks for.
  • Get an understanding of term-sheet, legal aspects and exiting ventures.
  • Be part of high-profile and high impact SLP Global alumni that will help you to scale up.
  • Last but not least, make friends with entrepreneurs, as all know – its lonely at the top.

Apply here. For more information about Pune’s SLP, contact pune@startupleadership.com.

200 CS graduates want to help you with your pet project

Hundreds of B.E. (Computer Science) students who graduated in 2009 are now idle for a few months because their job offers have been deferred by their future employers. What is a potentially nasty psychological and social problem can easily be converted into a win-win situation for everybody concerned if people in the industry come forward and provide projects for these graduates to work on in the intervening period. If you are an experienced industry person, by providing a few hours of guidance, you can get some useful work done, and and the same time help the graduates improve their skills, and become more employable.

Anand Deshpande, CEO of Persistent, who is the driving force behind this effort, points out that there are over 200 students in this situation right now, and the industry could help itself while at the same time helping the students by coming up with, say, 3-month projects that small teams of students could complete. He points to web-2.0, e-Governance, and the cloud as potential technologies that might be rather well suited for this purpose. As an example of something like this working well, and producing useful, real-world output, he points to the Stanford class where 80 students created 50+ facebook applications, with over 20 million installs, and 5 of them had 1 million+ installs. There is no reason something like that cannot work with our crop of students.

It must be pointed out that many of these students are the star students who got recruited straight from campus, but now find themselves in this situation because their job offers got defered of revoked.

So what should you do?

We have created a mailing list called TechStart.in that will be used to co-ordinate this effort.

  • If you can guide small student teams, and if you can commit to giving at least a couple of hours per week for the next three months, then join the techstart.in mailing list, and post a small mail introducing yourself.
  • In a few days, we will specify how and where to post information about your project and/or how to find the appropriate students for your project. This information will be posted on the mailing list.
  • If you don’t have any specific project in mind, but would generally like to help out with this effort, please join the mailing list and give a brief background of yourself. We can use all the help you can provide
  • If you can think of any other ideas that can help out in this situation, please suggest those on the mailing list. All proposals are welcome.
  • This program is only going to work if we are able to collect at least 30 to 50 mentors who can guide the students. We will start work seriously on this only after a reasonable number of people have shown an interest on the techstart.in mailing list. If there’s not enough interest shown on the list in the next few days, this program will die. So if you’re interested, please send a mail on techstart.in. If you know somebody else who might be interested, please forward this mail to them.


This is really a win-win situation

  • You get good CS graduates from good colleges working for you
  • If things work out and the team does a good job, you get a great, tested employee
  • The student learns valuable industry skills, gets guidance, and becomes more employable
  • There is no necessity to pay the students for this work. (However, you could give a stipend if you are possibly interested holding on to the student for a long-term job.)

Logistics and other details

Here are some details that I glossed over in the write-up above:

  • This program is targeted towards Computer Science graduates of the class of 2009.
  • Anand Despande has already contacted the colleges and they have all indicated a willingness to help out with this effort. Persistent is also willing to help with some resources. Other companies are expected to follow suit. So rooms, facilities, and other logistics help will be available if required.
  • If you can conduct 3-month Stanford-style course for one batch of students building a bunch of facebook apps, or Microsoft Azure apps, or Google android apps, or anything else, please come forward. As long as you’re willing to drive, appropriate resources can be made available to you.
  • If you have any other ideas, please suggest them on the mailing list.


This is a great opportunity to do something socially useful and get something in return. So join. And make others join. Right now, all you need to do is indicate your availability and willingness. More details will become available soon.

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Free Mentoring Workshop for Startups with Baba Kalyani, R Sriram etc.

Innovations 2009

TiE Pune in conjunction with Innovations 2009 is conducting “From Innovations to IPO” – a free workshop for mentoring startups on Sunday 9am to 2:30pm, at the Dewang Mehta Auditorium at Persistent Systems on S.B. Road.
TiE has limited free seats for the i2i Event, strictly on first come first served basis. To avail of the offer, please contact Namita Shibad on +919822495752. You can also register with her at namita.shibad@gmail.com.
When one asks any entrepreneur what he needs to get going, the answer we get is “MONEY”. This is true for almost all young companies looking to start out. But, what most do not recognize is that besides Money, there is so much more to getting going that, when the shots hit, they knock you over. There are issues on Marketing, making of a Business Plan, options for funding – remember that a Balance Sheet must look different if you are going for either Debt or Equity, and so many more unthought-of obstacles. Hence, this workshop aims to offer guidance in both management and technology for the entire spectrum of businesses across verticals.

9.30am to 9.45am – a brief introduction to the world of TiE, followed by a Suzuki Violin presentation by very little children.
9.45am to 10.45am – a Financial Workshop by Mr. Nikhil Khattau a Private Equity Investor, who also is on the boards of Marico, Midday, Nagpur Power & Industries, Paymate, Geodesic Techniques, and with Mayfield Services. Mr. Khatau will take you through the making of a Business Plan. He will also take financials of ‘X’ company as submitted to an Investor, and project them against the same financials, reworked so as to appeal to that Investor.
10.45am to 11.45am – an important session on Marketing by the Guru. R. Sriram co-founder Next Practice Retail, and the man who started Crossword, will share his experiences and insights on Customer Based Innovation – for a decisive competitive edge. He will also talk about the ‘all-important’ Branding aspect of Marketing.
11.45am to 12.15pm – Tea
12.15pm to 1.30pm – The Chief Guest of the Mentoring program, Baba Kalyani will share his experiences and insights into `Building a Modern, Global and Sustainable Enterprise.
There will be a small Question and Answer session at the end of each session.
1.30pm to 2.30 pm – Lunch will be served.

There 5 tech events happening in Pune this weekend. Check out the PuneTech calendar for details.

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