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TieCon Pune 2018: Conclave aims to TiE in the core issues

Revised structure of TiECon Pune aims to facilitate focussed yet free-wheeling discussions on problems faced by entrepreneurs.

pune Updated: Apr 21, 2018 16:07 IST
Namita Shibad
Namita Shibad
Hindustan Times, Pune
tiecon pune,tiecon pune 2018,maharashtra
Ashwini Deshpande (right), founder of Elephant Design, receiving the Woman Champ award from Sujata Tilak, MD, Ascent Intellimination Pvt Ltd, at the TiECon awards function on Friday.(Shankar Narayan/HT PHOTO)

TiECon Pune 2018, the city’s largest annual gathering of entrepreneurs, startup founders and venture capitalists in the city, took off on a serious note on Friday with deep dive sessions on Business Validation, From Sales To Scale, Social Selling and Funding, to help the entrepreneurial community clarify and address many of the problems they face while establishing their businesses.

Organised by the Pune chapter of TiE (The Indus Entrepreneurs), a non-profit global community that seeks to encourage and mentor entrepreneurship, Vandana Saxena, chairperson of TiECon Pune, said the conference format was changed this year to facilitate free-wheeling and, at the same time, focus the discussions on issues faced by entrepreneurs.

The two-day event at Westin Hotel began with a session on business validation by Ravi Nigam who set up Tasty Bite. The session was aimed at helping entrepreneurs understand what is different about their businesses. The session on From Sales To Scale was delivered by Kiran Deshpande, who set up Mojo, while the one on Social Selling showed entrepreneurs how to manage sales and marketing with virtually no money. The fourth session on Funding sought to present a new perspective on fund raising with a focus on returns on investment, which is what investors are most interested in.

“After the four sessions, we feel that our entrepreneurs will be well equipped to ask all the right questions to our speakers tomorrow,” Saxena said. The session on April 21 has several interesting speakers who make the event a must-attend. The TCS Story session by FC Kohli, founder of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), one of India’s largest information technology (IT) firms; S Ramadorai, former CEO and MD, TCS and Ishaat Hussain, former finance director, Tata Sons, will talk about the journey of the company. Alyque Padamsee, an advertising guru, will deliver the concluding session on Creating A Winning Culture which based on branding and advertising.

Budding entrepreneurs recognised

The city’s entrepreneurship ecosystem gathered at the TiECon Pune 2018’s award ceremony which was aimed at felicitating the young business minds. Ashwini Desphande, founder of Elephant Design, was presented with the woman champ award instituted by TiECon Pune 2018 to honour the best woman entrepreneur to have set up a successful business.

While the startup of the year award went to EarlySalary.com, the outstanding social enterprise award was won by Pune City Connect, a platform for collaboration between corporates and the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC). Anand Deshpande, founder and CMD of Persistent Systems, received the exemplary entrepreneur award.

These awardees were chosen from more than 120 nominations received from TiE Charter Members and were eventually finalised by a 20-member jury over the last two months. Awards were presented under eight titles to companies and individual entrepreneurs.

“It is an honour as this award aims to encourage and recognise women entrepreneurs. However, I feel that every individual in whatsoever field has a champ within themselves. They need to recognise that on their own first, and then put the best foot forward to unleash it,” said Ashwini.

Speaking on the occasion, Anand Deshpande said, “Although the award has been instituted under the individual category, I believe no person can gain success individually. Without my company, all the former and current employees and my family, I would not have been where I am today.”

In addition to being a software company encouraging new talent through various initiatives, including the Smart India Hackathon, Deshpande also created deAsra foundation which is committed to enabling people to start, manage and grow a small business successfully. Hi ultimate aim is to support 25,000 enterprises.