2 months of intense training underway at TiE-IQ bootcamp, Mumbai

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Last week, when we dropped into at one of the TiE – IQ bootcamp sessions, it could have been mistaken for a classroom of students amidst an academic group discussion. Armed with pen and paper, the 40-50 odd people in the room, were discussing customer segments for their products. The subject of discussion was similar to what would be discussed in a B-school – identifying your customer – but the difference here was that this group was not doing this exercise to earn their certificates. But they were seriously looking at customer segments, because they are entrepreneurs – strategizing on real businesses, real products and looking at real customer and markets.

The TiE – IQ bootcamp that kicked off earlier last month is a 60 day session, which has been divided into four fortnights to track the progress of participants. From the 35 applications received from Mumbai & Pune, 10 were shortlisted to undergo the 2-month long camp in Mumbai. Talking about the event, Kanchan Kumar, ED, TiE Mumbai tells us, “The entire idea of the bootcamp is to help startups get enough mentoring and hand holding in the 2 months. Within the said time, we want to help make businesses viable, startups should go out with a ready product and be ready to goto market.”

The theme for this bootcamp is B2B technology and all the final 10 were startups in that space. Only those were admitted who had at least a minimum viable product(MVP) ready. The four fortnights at the camp has been divided as follows. First one was about finding a product solution fit. “Many startups build a product first and then think about the market that the product can cater to. But we focus on that aspect first -- getting the right problem solution fit for your product. We also help them plot the competition, do target segmentation – all this is done with a grid of sorts, where we sit with the businesses and do the plotting for them in these different areas,” explains Kanchan.

In the second fortnight, startups have to actually go to market and do customer validation of their business and record their experiences. Through the 60 days, regular meetings with mentors and experts are done for startups to help them improve their ventures. In the third fortnight startups are helped fine tune their pitches, work on their elevator pitch, writing introductory mails and mock pitches are done. Startups are helped to make a single page introduction of their product that can be used by them for showcasing their products to customers/investors externally. The last fortnight is all about growth hacking, where bootcamp participants get to meet startups who have scaled their businesses, and learn from them in person, the life skills required to survive in the outside world.

We spoke to the participants at the bootcamp and all of them were unanimous on the effectiveness of the format. “I think the time taken for us to develop the product, understand customers, market, how to sell, etc is cut short because of the training we get here,” said a participant. “None of us feel confused now, the sessions and learnings have been very helpful. The best part is that mentors are also entrepreneurs and not some big shots in corporates. This helps us understand, how they built their own businesses,” said another participant.

The bootcamp is currently in its third fortnight, and will have their demo day in Bangalore in early November.

The TiE-IQ bootcamp is sponsored by Nexus Venture Partners & India Quotient. YourStory is their media partner.

Following are the participants of this bootcamp:

1. Effte – Effte provides tools to automate trading strategies in a simple, secure and inexpensive way

2. Treashare Online – Treashare helps event organisers increase engagement with online and offline audience and archive event data.

3. Convrz (Thalia Technologies Pvt Ltd) - Convrz is a messaging platform for modern teams. It enables Twitter like #tags and smart keywords right in the messaging thread to optimize work flow and improve productivity. It allows teams to merge multiple tools – chat, project management, task management, notes etc – into one, thereby simplifying work life and saving time.

4. BugClipper - BugClipper makes it very easy to report bugs directly from the apps and saves 70% of the bug reporting time.

5. MeraBackup - MeraBackup is like a bank locker for your Tally data. It automatically backs up your tally data, quietly in the background.

6. Sharemojo - Sharemojo reduces cost of customer acquisition for online merchants by enabling them to create their very own performance-driven referral program.

7. Sapling Design - Sematools makes consumer perception surveys easy and affordable through web-based visual survey solutions.

8. MyEffecto - MyEffecto is a feedback plugin for websites and bloggers. It helps users provide clearer, one-click feedback and publishers to get analytics of reader responses and post consumption behavior.

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