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Platforms for Marriage, Business Application, Publishing — a successful triad in Chennai

Tuesday June 14, 2011 , 4 min Read


Regional RoundTable Chennai to showcase spirit of success in technology entrepreneurship

Each city has a character. Chennai, on the southern tip of India, is distinct in its culture of a facile marriage between tradition and modern. The value system instilled in young people is success through education. It is no surprise that educational institutions flourish in this part of the country. In a conservative city slowly wearing off its recluse to adopt modernity and where entrepreneurship was once for those not able to find a job, enthralling success stories have been created to inspire a whole new generation of technology entrepreneurs. Now the spirit of entrepreneurship is slowly transforming the lens through which entrepreneurs are viewed. Everyone needs a role model and without precedence, history is never possible.

Little did a man from lower strata of society, where still socioeconomic class is a problem, would have imagined, as he stepped out into the brave new world leaving his humble surroundings, that he would one day shine as a role model, taking the podium on a weekend afternoon to inspire a new army of technology entrepreneurs. A little after courtesies have been pronounced, Murugavel Janakiraman, famous for making marriage alliances online through his, will take you through his humbling, yet riveting life course that placed him on a pedestal and he creating a market that never existed in the first place. For now it would fit this man if he were to say marriages are made online -- and not offline in Heaven. Or what is offline made in Heaven is executed online.

Every technology company wants to become the next Google. And the aspiration levels created by this Search giant have hardly left anyone outside its orbit. But what if someone would take on Google itself and that too hailing from a little known Cuddalore, a coastal town along the east coast of Tamil Nadu, a little over 200 km from Chennai? Vicissitudes of fortune can take someone to an unimaginable high. Recently, I read in a book that opportunities do come but they are not punctual. But it was only that everything fell in place for Suresh Sambandam, founder of OrangeScape, to develop a business application platform that runs on top of Google App Engine (which Google itself couldn’t sort out) and saves enormously on enterprise cost. Needless to say, OrangeScape therefore ranks among the top 10 PaaS companies in the world and glossy media hasn’t failed to take note.

If cricket was your obsession during your life as a teenager, would you leave your PhD to publish scores on the new-age fancy Internet way back in 1992 or somewhere about then. Some men are privy to quirky thinking and if such twisted thought processes did not engage Badri Seshadri, he wouldn’t have established, the premier cricket portal owned now by ESPN. Like Srikkanth’s power hitting that is commonplace today, and Facebook and Twitter valued at astronomical dollars without any inflow, Badri’s brainchild that had five other cofounders was able to raise $100 million without any incoming dollar long back. With another stroke of luck or whatever you call it, Badri exited from cricinfo to get into publishing of a different kind. Now he runs New Horizon Media, an emerging star on the Indian publishing scene. If someone says show me exit in an Internet business, here it is. And lions only roar. And success follows only the brave. So Badri is second-time lucky and luck is the by-product of hard work and right decisions.

Come, join us, at IIT-Madras on June 25th to shake hands with Muruga, Suresh, and Badri and hear them spin their success stories to reverberate in your ears for a long time to come and inspire you to think of possibilities rather than what-ifs.

Contact [email protected] for registrations to Regional RoundTable Chennai.