Can Yahoo create a successful social networking site? Suyash Jaiswal, a student of the Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies, Vile Parle, certainly thinks so. It has the money, the experience and the technology. The market is still growing, even though the competition is high.
Yahoo could do well to heed this analysis put together by Jaiswal, 26, and a group of business school students drawn from diverse countries.
This project propelled the second year business management student into the final round of the X Culture Project, an annual international business case study competition.
The event was held at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Jaiswal was the only Indian to make it to the finals and to then go on and win. The final round of the competition was concluded last week.
Teams were randomly allocated to bring together students from different countries in a single unit. The winning team was awarded $300.
"We started our research by studying social networks and their content, their users and other factors such as their growth and internet penetration," said Jaiswal.
"As a consulting company, our brief was to come up with new business opportunities and strategies. We suggested that Yahoo could come up with a social network," he added.
In the first round of the challenge, Jaiswal and his teammates communicated and brainstormed online through chats, video conferences and emails. It helped the students understand business cultures and perspectives of other nationalities.
In the second round, Jaiswal was grouped with another bunch of teammates.
They had to identify as a company entering a new market and the business plan they would deploy. They chose the telecom company Telefonica and India as the new market.
The plan suggested rolling out services such as GSM, 3G and 4G and then following up with other activities such as cloud computing.
"There is a lot of growth here in the telecom market in India," said Jaiswal.
The X Culture project was launched in 2010. About 500 students from seven countries participated in the first season. The number of participants has now touched 2,000 students from about 30 universities in more than 25 countries.