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Trailblazers #3: An Interview with Mr.Vishal Kumar

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KGEC E Cell recently played host to Mr. Vishal Kumar, CEO and founder of learningwhiletravelling.com on the occasion of Egnition ’19,the freshers’ orientation program of Kalyani Governement Engineering College’s Entrepreneurship Cell. He did his bachelors from IIT Kharagpur and post-graduation from UBC, Vancouver, Canada. He had worked in oil and gas industries in Canada, Singapore and Indonesia. Not sure about pursuing an MBA and after visiting many B-schools in a 100-day world tour itinerary, he dropped his MBA plan and invested his savings in his startup. He has been to 25 countries to date. Mr.Vishal’s brainchild the International Startup Enrichment Tour” aims to help all startups get a global platform to extend their cross border trade, investment and network. He is also working on establishing E-Cells in schools and colleges where LWT is supporting the students from ‘idea’ to ‘incubation’ (zero to one). The startups from these colleges gain a lot of exposure while traveling and participating in various national and international e-summits at different parts of the globe.

Here are some of the excerpts :

KGEC E Cell: What is the inspiration behind this startup ?

Vishal Kumar: Having travelled a lot (25 countries, till date), I see myself as an upgraded person after each travel. Travel can be used as a means for a person to upgrade themselves. A person who has travelled a lot can learn about different cultures and can change his way of thinking. Scholarship in the form of flight tickets is a very good motivation for youth to experience foreign culture and this will change their mindset and eventually upgrade India.

KEC: Why have you chosen Singapore as the city ?

VK: I used to live in Singapore and it is a well developed city with many amenities. So, instead of connecting Mumbai and Bangalore (cities which were more developed) to Singapore I decided to connect Kolkata and its surrounding areas because of higher growth. Also, it is not very far from Kolkata and the travel is inexpensive. Singapore is also a very good role model for India and there is a lot of encouragements for startups as well. This will boost tourism and entrepreneurship in both countries as well.

KEC: What according to you does it take to be  a successful entrepreneur?

VK: A successful entrepreneur has to be self motivated because there is no one to motivate them through the tough times. You might be feeling low everyday for a variety of reasons – starting from inadequate supply of money or the people who are working under you are unable to follow you. So, there needs to be a consistent drive, zeal and passion from within to tide over the tough times.

KEC: How do you deal with hardships and failures?

VK: That’s an interesting question : If the world laughs at me, I’ll laugh back at them later.  Entrepreneurship is a great leveler. Even someone with an IIT tag has the same chances as that of a non IITian and there is no edge whatsoever. You must be willing to accept whatever comes your way as it is the same playing field.

KEC: That is the most demotivating thing for us, because we are not from an IIT

People do  an MBA to wipe the sin of engineering

VK: People do  an MBA to wipe the sin of engineering. So, if you can create a startup you can upgrade your overall life. So, definitely trying is the main factor here.

KEC: Please share if you have any successful incidents.

VK: Initially, for our pilot project we had a Bangkok trip which consisted of around 20 – 30 people, for a duration of 3 days. It was a very hard task gathering that many people who would turn up because everyone thought that our free trip was a scam, with hidden terms and conditions. Later, we were able to gather around 70 people for a semi sponsored one week trip to Singapore. We had visa issues but then everything started to fall into place. 69828944_1207707932748048_6329431198888099840_o

KEC: What are the things that you would like to achieve in the future?

VK: We would like one representative from every school and college in India for our foreign trip. We would give them the option of all 200 countries. Getting young people into entrepreneurship early is the key to maintaining a viable startup ecosystem. Due to parental and societal pressure kids do not get an opportunity to be an entrepreneur. Our main motive here is to groom young people early on topics such as sales marketing and finances such that they are not a job seeker, but a job giver.

KEC: What were the initial hurdles you had to overcome ?

VK: Capital was not an issue for us because it was a bootstrapped venture. The main hurdle was that many people did not believe in us because they thought that it was a scam. It was very difficult to get people on board with us. Later, when we became successful we were called for TV interviews. So, now the coin has flipped.

KEC: What was the Singapore trip all about ?

VK: It was all about getting all the strangers under one roof. Everyone gathered at Kolkata and we started giving them different activities. The B-plan contest started on the plane itself. It was followed by lectures at various colleges at Singapore and conference at Marina Bay Sands, a 7 star hotel. There was also an optional Kaplan certification course and pitching plans at the Singapore Chamber of Commerce. Participants also met the Transport Minister of Singapore. So, overall it was a mesmerising experience for everyone and especially for those who were out of India for the very first time.

KEC: Please describe your business model.

VK: We follow two kinds of business models: The Jio sim model which is a freemium based model where we give away free tickets to the participants; the other, IITJEE kind of model where a lot of people pay an application fee and very few people get selected. So, we will give away the tickets as a prize of a very high competition and we will get the revenue from the application fees itself. So, ultimately we will be going for a merit cum means scholarship. We are also trying to introduce entrepreneurship into the school and college curricula such that the cost can be covered by an educational loan.

KEC: Last but not the least, are you hiring ?

VK: Although, we are not hiring full time people we do have positions for summer interns. These are creative positions that will require negotiating skills to get sponsorship from corporate companies as well as the Government. They need additional skills such as sales, marketing and they need to be able to execute the trip. We will eventually hire a team for all 200+ country’s program which totals to around 500-1000 people.

For more details please watch,

Reported by –

Sanghamitra Biswas

 

#BeYourOwnBoss, #ThinkBig, BeYourOwnBoss, Entrepreneurship, Uncategorized

Trailblazers #5: An Interview With Mr. Sashwata Roy

KGEC E-CELL has recently been successful in reaching another milestone as IIT Bombay set foot on KGEC for the very first time ever in the form of an entrepreneurial workshop named “SYMPOSIUM-DE-ILLUMINATE”.

KGEC E-CELL was glad to host Mr Sashwata Roy, the representative of IIT Bombay E-CELL and the main speaker of the event. Mr Sashwata Roy, who has over 23 years of hard-core experience in the Telecom/ISP domain working with major Telecom/ISP companies across various geographies spearheading their Enterprise Business function has been an experienced business leader with 24+ years of diversified experience in business operations and has been an integral position holder in corporates like Aircel, Reliance Communications, Dishnet DSL Ltd., Global Electronic Commerce Services Ltd., Elnet Technologies Ltd(ENT), ICNET Limited. Presently, he has been associated with his own start-up, “SHUSABIITH IT SERVICES LLP”, a Customer-Centric organization, being the authorized Business Partner for multiple Companies and primarily focussed on the B2B Segment, focusing on providing quality solutions and services to the Enterprise Customers.

Kalyani Government Engineering College Entrepreneurship Cell is proud to have an interactive session with him and here are some of the excerpts:-

KGEC E Cell: What is the inspiration behind you choosing Entrepreneurship?

Sashwata Roy: In my opinion, definitely there have been 2 main reasons behind me starting over something of my own.

Firstly, I have been holding integral positions in various Corporates, where there is fame, scope and money, but I was in hesitation whether I am fit to reach the CXO level in that company because if a person in his early 40’s has not been able to reach that position, then maybe he is not the right person for that CXO position. There, it was the moment, which gave me the boost to start something of my own and become an entrepreneur.

Secondly, If anyone is doing Corporate Jobs with so much experience, It always strikes at the back of the mind to embrace into starting something of oneself, where one will be the job creator and there came my will into play which inspired me to start over my start-up in October 2017.

KEC: How have you been associated with IIT BOMBAY E-CELL?

SR: I have not been directly associated with IIT BOMBAY E-CELL.I have been a part of the Prowisdom Growth Private Limited Group, wherein professionals, subject experts & industry leaders across the world, step into the network and connect online as well as offline, to share their knowledge, best practices, Industry & functional awareness, merits & demerits of a role, industry trends, an industry expected skills, & their professional wisdom with the youth (15 – 35 yrs.), to help them identify their strengths, build capabilities, learn new skills to help them in progressing towards achieving their personal & professional goals.
I have been listed as a mentor on their platform and they have collaborations with IIT BOMBAY E-CELL and thus I have this opportunity to be a part of their NEC 2K19 workshop session as a Speaker.

KEC: What is your opinion on the difference of opportunities and facilities provided between an IIT and a Govt. College like KGEC?

SR: In my personal point of view, I believe that there is no basic difference in terms of entrepreneurship genre getting into the roots of the youths in any place, be it an IIT or KGEC, as everyone in their prospect is doing their best to enhance start-up culture. Yeah there may be hindrances in Govt Colleges like the will to organize this session, convincing the HOD’s, etc, but it is just benefitting you all as “Entrepreneurship is all about overcoming hardships and obstacles and emerging victorious” and thus these hindrances are preparing you all in this long run of entrepreneurship journey. It’s just the determination and will to make things possible.

KEC: How different is it for you to be a part of the professional mentorship and part of student grooming?

SR: Well, I have been associated in conducting training programmes in specific professional domains(initiatives like “TRAIN THE TEACHER”)and also sessions for budding students. What I feel is that students are more receptive to learn and moreover other places, these workshops have a strength of around 60-70, but I am really excited and honoured to be a part of this workshop in KGEC as the strength is great(nearly 90)and there is a very healthy response from the students.

KEC: What are your views on privatization being an entrepreneur?

SR: Well, I won’t comment much but privatization has been beneficial all over the world and thus I believe it will have positive implications in India too, because facilities will enhance and the process of privatization is based on the pulse of the nation and it is not possible for an organization like Railways to manage the behemoth of workload. There may be questions arising on the future stake of jobs, etc but overall it will be beneficial for the nation.

KEC: Well last but not the least, what will be your words of motivation for young students who in this I should be Job Creators rather than Job Seekers?

SR: Well, it was great to be part of this whole programme and my words of advice to young budding student entrepreneurs will be to keep thinking, read a lot, analyse the local common problems and be knowledgeable. Everyone has ideas but A true entrepreneur is someone who converts those ideas into reality for the larger benefit of the society. Moreover, there is no hard and fast rule for the chapter of entrepreneurship, but it totally depends on the will and determination of either an individual or a team of individuals aligned to the same common objective. By putting forward those ideas, we can analyse how much adaptable it is, how much scalable it is and how to earn profits from the business. Failures may come but it’s not the end, never stop thinking and trying; you will succeed one day with this power of self -belief and determination.

Interview Taken and Written By : Sayan Seth & Sarthak Mazumdar

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Finding more about ‘Funding A Startup’

In the world of start-ups, it’s survival of the fittest. According to the Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy, only 50% of them survive after one year and only one-third can make it up to the 10-year mark.

Start-up funding is a series of investments that raise capital for a business. As a start-up expands each funding round serves as a stepping stone towards the growth.

The different types of funding rounds are explained according to the order.

Self Funding or Bootstrapping:

The term Self Funding means to use your own assets to invest in the company. It is basically the first stage of investment in which a founder invests his or her money to begin the start-up. Bootstrapping is when you completely self-fund your path forward. You don’t take out any loans or provide investors with a stake in your company. Most entrepreneurs use the money in their savings, charge personal credit cards, or budget strategically in order to finance their business. A bootstrap business gives the owner complete control of the company.

Friends and Family:

Often the family and close friends of an owner invest a part of their savings in the business. It helps beginners to start their entrepreneurial journey. It plays a vital role in the entrepreneurial journey.

Seed:

The seed stage of investing in the first phase of raising outside capital. Seed money sometimes known as seed funding is a form of securities in which an investor invests capital in a start-up company in exchange for an equity stake in the company. Seed funding is the first official equity funding stage. It typically represents the first official money that a business venture or enterprise. As the business becomes increasingly mature, it tends to advance through the funding rounds; it’s common for a company to begin with a seed round and continue with A, B, and then C funding rounds.

Growth/Early Stage:

The first round of investments in venture capital. Usually, this begins and ends with series A. The start-up should expect to have a much more formal board and leadership team becomes more “professionalized”. The earliest stage of funding a new company comes so early in the process that it is not generally included among rounds of funding at all. Known as “pre-seed” funding, this stage typically refers to the period in which a company’s founders are first getting their operations off the ground.

Angel Investors:

Angel investors are the one who invests in the initial stage of a start-up usually in exchange for convertible debt or equity. They usually provide capital at times when other investors are not ready to support the business. Angel investors are often retired entrepreneurs or executives for reasons that go beyond pure monetary form. A small but increasing number of angel investors invest online through equity crowdfunding or organize themselves into angel groups or angel networks to share investment capital, as well as to provide advice to their portfolio companies.

Expansion:

Very few companies can hit up to this stage. The main feature is that the start-up grows month over month and made at least $5 revenue in the last year. It deeply increases the enthusiasm of the owner as the company has started flourishing in this stage.

Mezzanine:

Mezzanine funding is a hybrid of debt and equity financing that gives the lender the right to convert to an equity interest in the company in case of a default, generally after the venture capital companies and other senior lenders are paid. In finance, mezzanine capital is any subordinated debt or preferred equity instrument that represents a claim on a company’s assets which is senior only to that of the common shares. Mezzanine financing may result in lenders gaining equity in a business or warrants for purchasing equity at a later date. This round is the final raise before going public. In Mezzanine round companies are valued over several hundred million if not over a billion.

Initial Public Offering (IPO):

IPO or stock market launch is a type of public opening in which shares of a company are sold to institutional investors and retail investors as well. It is usually underwritten by one or more investment bank who also arrange for the shares to be listed on one or more stock. Need for IPO is still a robust demand for the market, a public company has the right to issue more stock. The opening price is set by supply and demand. Few investors can buy an IPO at the offering price, because most shares go to the underwriter’s institutional clients and some are reserved for the company’s friends and family. One can bid for IPO’s through the offline method or online method. In the offline method, a physical form has to be filled up and submitted to the IPO banker or broker. In case of an online application, one can directly login the application directly through the trading interface provided by the broker.

Venture Capitalists:

A venture capitalist (VC) is a private equity investor that provides capital to companies exhibiting high growth potential in exchange for an equity stake.Often Venture Capitalists take the risk of financing startups with the hope that some of the firms may become successful.Typical Venture Capital investment occurs through an initial round called ‘seed funding round’ and then it continues through various seed rounds.Venture capitalists provide capital with an expectation of generating a refund through some exit events like selling the shares of the company to public for the first time called Initial Public Offering.(IPO)

Done by: Suvro Mukherjee & Ayndrila Ghosh

#BeYourOwnBoss, #ThinkBig, Collegepreneurs, Ideas, India, ThinkBig

Symposium–de-illuminate : A KGEC E-CELL and IIT-B Collaboration.

“ The only way to do great work is to love what you do.“

-Steve Jobs

And this love for entrepreneurship helped KGEC E-CELL to reach another milestone as IIT Bombay set foot on KGEC for the first time ever.It was indeed a very proud moment for Kalyani Government Engineering College as KGEC E-CELL in collaboration with the E Cell of IIT Bombay organized an entrepreneurial workshop named Symposium–de-illuminate for the benefit of the students. Students from various colleges took part in it. Sashwata Roy, the representative of IIT Bombay E Cell, was the main speaker of the event. Dr. Shantanu Das(Chairman of KGEC E-cell), Prof. Supriyo Banerjee (Secretary of KGEC E-cell), Prof. Md. Iqbal Qureshi(Treasurer of KGEC E-cell) also graced the event with their precious presence.

sir and mr. roy

Mr. Sashwata Roy started his lecture explaining what Entrepreneurship actually is-

“ The capacity and willingness to develop, organize and manage a business venture along with any of its risks, in order to add value and make profit. In other words, the activity of setting up a business or businesses, taking on financial risks in the hope of profit. “

He then went on talking  about a lot of business terms and gave valuable info about them. The overall project was on finding out the major problems we face in our society, generating practical solutions of those problems and make a business model canvas on it.

lecture

“The way an artist fills up a blank white canvas with colors and turn that into a lively painting, entrepreneurs in the same way, give solutions to problems in a form of start-up in their business model canvas.”

For that Mr. Sashwata Roy at first divided the whole audience into 9 teams. Each team had to prepare one business model and pitch it in front of the audience.

The first half of the workshop consisted of the discussions on various topics related to business. Mr. Roy explained them in details. He clarified what are the basic requirements to be a successful entrepreneur and what his mind-set should be. He gave detailed explanation about unique value proposition, customer services, revenue streams, cost structure, key metrics and many such terms that are essential for a business model.

rear view

Then there was a breather after a contiguous session of discussion. In the second half, it was all about the teams to prepare the business model canvas and pitch it. To help the teams in making the canvas, Mr. Roy showed the BMCs(Business model canvas) of AIRBNB, OLA, AMAZON etc. and explained their success stories. He cited the likes of Mr. Ratan Tata, Steve Jobs, Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg and many other successful entrepreneurs in order to enlighten the lamp inside the budding entrepreneurs. To speak about start-up, he stated that,

“A start-up is a company working to solve a problem where the solution is not obvious and success is not guaranteed.So, it is all about taking risks, failures are parts and parcels of it. People who overcome all these barriers, are the ones who survive in this field.”

We are glad to share that Mr. Sashwata Roy was ‘hugely impressed’  by the pitching event as each and every team came up with innovative ideas and their B-Plan looked quite promising. Mr. Roy and Prof. Supriyo Banerjee monitored the event and gave invaluable advice and suggestions to the teams for the betterment of their ideas.

laptop and speaker

So, in overall, it was a great learning experience for the participants as they got a chance  to get familiar with the terms that are required for every businessman to get success in their field. Moreover, they got to know how to pitch and the basics of business model canvas.

All the credits though goes to the KGEC E-CELL and its members as they worked really hard to organize the workshop successfully in such a short period of time and their hard work literally paid off. Mr. Roy was amazed as his last speech summed up the whole story of the day.

 

“I am glad to be a part of this workshop. The enthusiasm and energy shown by the participants is really appreciable and we would be looking towards organizing more such events in future. Thank you all.”

group pic

Written By-Sarthak Mazumdar

Edited By- Sohini Ghosh

#BeYourOwnBoss, Collegepreneurs, Entrepreneurship, Ideas, womenentrepreneurship

Trailblazers #4 : An Interview With ‘Catch Them Young’ Participants.

It  all started on 23rdDecember, 2018,when Kaushikee Banerjee along with our Joint Secretary Mr. Ankan Chattopadhyay and fellow member Ms. Shubhangi Dey witnessed some entrepreneurs discussing about their start-ups and success stories at a networking meet organized by CTY in American Centre, Kolkata.

After a day long session, they were notified about the campus ambassador programme which was open to college students.

After filling up the form of Campus Ambassador programme, Kaushikee Banerjee received a mail from CTY with a few questions like why would she want to be a part of this, if she had any business idea or not etc. Based upon the answers the final selection was to be made. She cleared this round and got a call by one CTY representative that she had been shortlisted as the campus ambassador. Her work was to spread the word and inspire students to take part in it.

Few months down the lane,

it was a proud moment for all KGECians as 5 out of 5 participants of ‘Catch them young‘ competition had qualified for the next round and grabbed the chance of attending a business summit.

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The selected students were:

  1. Hosneara Khatoon (CSE, 4th Year)
  2. Sanghamitra Biswas(IT, 3rd Year)
  3. Devsmita Mukherjee (CSE, 3rd Year)
  4. Shubhangi Dey (EE, 2nd Year)
  5. Tirtharaj Chakraborty (IT, 1st Year)

KGEC E-CELL ,delighted with  this achievement decided to have an interactive session with them and hear from them about their experience and ideas and many things more…

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It started with just a general enquiry about how they came to know about CTY contest .

Sanghamitra Biswas explained that CTY had come to the college during April 2019 and had a session with the E Cell. During that session, Suman Mukhopadhyay came and encouraged the students to present their ideas, whatsoever it maybe and the selected few would then get a chance to participate in the bootcamp.

All the participants were very excited and few of them didn’t really expect that their idea would be shortlisted among the top 50 ideas. So before attending the camp, some of them were nervous at the same time confident enough to present their realistic B-Plan in front of the judge’s desk.

When asked about their B-plans, Sanghamitra Biswas said,

 “My idea is that by connecting ordinary tailoring institutions to customers, there will be a better fit at an affordable price.”

Husna Khatoon’s idea is based on Internet technology. She wants to create a website like shiksha.com or collegedunia.com, but it would be different from them and helpful to the students and their parents.

Devsmita Mukherjee had a plan which revolves around fashion and boutique. To open a boutique for a local brand which will be only for women, her motto is to enhance women empowerment.

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Shubhangi Dey explained her B-Plan which deals with a serious and real issue,

“My business plan was rural sector. I aimed at water scarcity in Purulia district of West Bengal which is the 2nd most water scarce area after Rajasthan. So, I made a B-Plan which highlighted that we can make water booths out of Moringa oleifera which is drumsticks or “duta” as we know it in Bengali. Drumsticks seed are very helpful to get purified water and thus eliminate the impurities in water and the general health will be be better.”

 

Tirtharaj demonstrated that his B-Plan is to provide digital marketing services and to make it easily available for every entrepreneur and businessman and salesperson. And to provide proper value proposition and to maintain customer relationships.

It was 3-day session with Subhangi Dey being the only participant to make it to the final day. During these 3 days the participants learnt quite a few things about how to make a presentation of their B-Plan. All the participants had one thing in common.  They were hugely impressed by the session by Data Sutram founder, Rajit Bhattacharya.

In the words of Subhangi,

“ We were taught value propositions, revenue model, how to do financial projections. We got to know how to make a B-Plan and how to implement it. We were asked to solve certain exercises and it helped us in knowing our idea to greater depth. So as we can understand that the sessions did not just test their B-Plan but also made them learn quite a few essential things which will be required in the entrepreneurship field.”

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Tirtharaj Chakraborty had an amazing experience just like all the other participants but it was all the more precious for a 1st Year. He is extremely thankful for the help he got from the other participants in making a presentation as well as in making his idea better. Let’s hear from him on this,

“I was helped a lot by my seniors. They helped me in shaping my idea so that it is well presented. I was encouraged to interact with the guest lecturers as well as with other participants.” He is very much excited to join KGEC E-CELL as according to him it would help him to, “get more opportunities like these as CTY and to learn a lot more from the other members and discuss my idea as well as other marketing strategies with them.”

Year after year one thing remains constant, and that is the excitement of freshers to join KGEC E-CELL.

pen paper

Most of the participants harbour future plans regarding their B-Plan and we hope they would  implement all the lessons they have learnt in the bootcamp to make their B-Plan get a little edge over the other ones. It’s good to see students actually being interested to launch their own start-ups rather than a daily job.

This gets more consolidated with Sanghamitra Biswas saying,

“Being a student at KGEC and member of E Cell from the first year, I have come to realise that there are not so many quality jobs out there. Most of the jobs that are out there is either underpaid or very tiring or on a completely different domain that you would like to work on. But being an entrepreneur, you can actually convert your own skills and create your own start-up.”

Out of the 5 participants, 4 were part of KGEC E-CELL. Sanghamitra Biswas and Devsmita Mukherjee was asked about their mantra to the 1st Years and both of them had one common thing to say, that was the 1st years should definitely join E-CELL if they are interested in the entrepreneurship field. According to Devsmita Mukherjee even if they are not interested in the business field they should give it a go as it would help in their personal development which will be beneficial when they would going for job interviews and all that.

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Last but not the least KGEC E-Cell is extremely proud of all 5 the participants of CTY contest and wishes them all the best for their future endeavours.

Written By: Sarthak Mazumder and Subhadeep Bose

Edited By: Sohini Ghosh

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Egnition2K19: launch of the mighty rocket

“ I’m an ignition, folks with me always put on compulsion to destine success in life.”

-Lord Robin

Sept’4,Kalyani: EGNITION has come from the word ‘IGNITION’ that means,the burning of fuels of engine, which drives the whole vehicle. But one can ask why there is ‘E’ instead of ‘I’, any guesses? It represents the spirit of the Entrepreneur.

In this way, Kalyani Government Engineering College Entrepreneurship Cell (KGEC E-Cell) organises EGNITION, the first event of this academic year, that brings the fire up into the students about the entrepreneurship cell where talent matters with the hard work. Many students have been motivated and got inspired by the teachers, speakers, and also from the members of KGEC E-cell.

Like every year, Egnition2K19, the freshers’ orientation programme organized by KGEC E-CELL, is growing bigger and better. The programme was held on 4th of September and was sponsored by Learning While Travelling and Arlo’s .

Prof. Dr. Santanu Das (Chairman, KGEC E-CELL) and Prof. Md. Iqbal Qureshi(Treasurer, KGEC E-CELL) were present in the opening ceremony and enlightened the lamp to get things going good. Both of them gave valuable speeches on the importance of entrepreneurship skills and how KGEC E-CELL nurtures it.

Then, it was time for the first event of the day i.e.“ BIZ-QUIZ” to commence. A total of 56 teams having two participants each had participated in the preliminary round. The top 6 teams was chosen to take part in the final two rounds. The quizmasters Mr.Anjishnu roy and Mr.Debottam Mazumder conducted the quiz beautifully . After a neck to neck fight, the winners Mr.Mayukh sen and Mr. Ayush Singh and the runners-up Mr.Anubhav Dutta and Mr. Rishav Dutta from ECE 1st year outclassed others and secured 4 round trip tickets to the City of Lions, Singapore.

Thereafter it was time for the most awaited fun event named AD-PRENEUR where teams of four participants were enrolled and they had to advertise on real or imaginary products. The most attractive, short but effective, entertaining or rather appealing one will be judged as the best one. After a series of innovative performances from a total of 30 teams , Mr.Sarbodaman Banerjee, Mr.Spandan Samanta, Mr.Krishna Ladha,Mr. Aditya Deb from ME 1st year, trounced others and won 4 round trip tickets to Singapore. The event was efficiently conducted by Miss Subhanghi Dey,Miss Meenakshi Karn, and Mr. Rounak Kirtania.

In the meantime, Joint Secretaries Mr. Ankan Chottopadhyay and Mr.Bikash Prajapati and Additional Secretary Mr.Animesh Dutta narrated about the activities of the Cell and and shared their experiences on being an integral part of it.

After an action – packed first half, it was time to take a breather, and as promised earlier, delicious food packets prepared by Arlo’s were there for the audience. Mr.Sukrit Chowdhury and Mr. Raktim Banejee from Arlo’s also demonstrated their startup plan and future goals during the recession. Thereafter , the main attraction of the day, our chief guest Mr. Vishal Kumar, the Founder & CEO of learningwhiletraveling.com had a lively and invaluable interactive session with the students . He was accompanied by Mr. Anish Singh and Mr. Abhishek Bhuin, a student of our college (ECE, 3rd Year) and the Founder of From The Earth.

After their impactful question answer session, the last event of that day named Off-the-cuff guided by Apurba Banerjee, Avisekh Dutta & Parna Mondal had commenced. The participants had been called to the podium, pick a chit and started speaking on that topic within 30 seconds. Mr. Vishal Kumar, being a judge of this event, stated that,

“It takes a lot of guts and self-belief to go out there and speak on a topic without preparation in front of a huge mass. So, every participant should be appreciated.”

Mr.Dibyanshu Sekhar Dey was adjudged the winner and Miss Sayantika Mondal the runner-up,both from EE 1st year will also join the 8 others to Singapore.

At last, it was the prize distribution ceremony where Mr. Vishal Kumar distributed the trophies, certificates and round-trip tickets of Singapore among the winners.The faces of the newbies who had their first exposure to the market motivates us as an organization to do lot more,even beyond our capacity and mind.

In overall, EGNITION 2k19 was a huge success and will be added as another feather in the cap of KGEC E-CELL. The response from the freshers was overwhelming and they did turn up on that day in huge numbers. The credit though goes to the whole team who worked really hard to promote, organise and pretty much all the stuffs to make it an exceptional one. EGNITION 2k19 brings more enthusiasm to all who have the aspirations to sparkle their lives in entrepreneurship and will be paragons of future.

Written By: Miss Devsmita Mukherjee
Mr. Sarthak Mazumder

Edited By: Mr.Dibyajyoti Ghosh

Entrepreneurship, Ideas

Pre Independence Startup Scene In India

History books are rich with stories from life under the colonial rule in India. The British subjugation deprived our nation of its wealth, its pride, liberty and its citizens of opportunities and a fair right to life for over two hundred years before years of struggle and political activism and revolts finally won India its long-overdue Independence.

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However, what doesn’t get talked about often is the scenario of entrepreneurship in the country before Independence. It goes without saying that starting a business during the British rule was quite a mammoth and daunting task since entrepreneurship was confined by rigid social, religious, political, communal boundaries. All these factors combined with the fact that the socio-economic culture was detrimental to Indians made the environment for innovation and entrepreneurship all the less conducive. The education system imposed by the British government whose primary objective was the requirement of clerks for its lower ranked offices did not help the situation either and it took massive courage and commitment from bold, dauntless individuals to rise to the task to create functional startups back then.

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With the rise of non-cooperation movements and the promotion of Indian made goods, the scenario started to change for the better. The period between the two world wars saw growth in this sector with the establishment of the Managing Agency System that played the role of a significant catalyst. This was followed by several opportunities that were successfully capitalised on by entrepreneurs of that age, helping to promote the culture of risk and innovation and this continued to be the backdrop of entrepreneurship in the country until the 15th of August, 1947.

As our ambitious nation now prepares for its 72nd year free from the shackles of colonial imperialism, let us take a look at a few Indian companies with roots before 1947.

  1. Britannia

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With the investment of ₹265 by a group of British businessmen, Britannia was established in 1892 headquartered in the then capital of the country, Kolkata. One of India’s oldest existing countries, it is now owned by the Wadia group. It started off as a small biscuit manufacturing house in Kolkata and was headed under the name VK Enterprise when the Gupta brothers acquired the enterprise. It got its current iconic name when in 1918, CH Holmes came on board as a partner and The Britannia Biscuit Company was launched.

  1. Haldiram’s

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Haldiram’s was founded by Shri Ganga Bhisen Agarwal as a modest snacks and sweet shop in Bikaner in 1937. A chance visit to a wedding in Kolkata prompted the establishment of a manufacturing plant in the City of Joy leading to expansion. This was soon followed by Shiv Kishan establishing shops in Nagpur where Haldiram’s became a major player in the market and it was Manorharlal and Kishan’s relentless ambitions that drove the brand.

  1. Godrej

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Godrej holds a special place in the history of Indian entrepreneurship. A central part of the Swadeshi movement- India’s first Make in India revolution, it was founded by Ardeshir Godrej in 1897 who set up a lock company after failing in a few ventures before. Between 1897 and 1902, Godrej introduced its first lock with lever technology in India and its first Indian safe. Following this, in 1918 Godrej Soaps Limited was acquired and the company manufactured the world’s first vegetable oil soap called ‘Chavi’ which promoted the values of Swadeshi and Ahimsa and was a huge hit. The brand gets endorsed by champions of the national movement like Mahatma Gandhi, Annie Besant and Rabindranath Tagore and in 1923, they venture into furniture. After Independence, Godrej was assigned the manufacture of 1.7 million ballot boxes to celebrate India’s newly found democratic spirit in 1951.

 

All these stories and enterprises just went on to show how pursuing and believing in dreams, even in the face of extreme adversity is quite often rewarded with immortal success. Yet another reason how the culture of entrepreneurship connects the nation and is now inspiring it to be a global economic superpower in the near future. We have made leaps and bounds since 1947, but we still have a long way to go.

Written By- Anjishnu Roy

Design By-Kaushikee Bandyopadhyay