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‘When startups grow, India prospers’ – 70 quotes from India’s No.1 startup conference, TechSparks 2018

Madanmohan Rao
12th Oct 2018
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If you missed India’s premier startup conference TechSparks last week, here are quotes from dozens of our articles that bring you the key insights and takeaways.


From start to scale, witness the memorable journey of Indian entrepreneurship in these excerpts and stories! StoryBites is a weekly feature from YourStory, featuring notable quotable quotes in our articles of this past week. Drawn from our articles and tweets (hashtag: tSparks) on the recent flagship TechSparks 2018 conference, here are over 70 gems of insight from a star-studded line-up of speakers. See also our quotes compilations from earlier editions of TechSparks: 2017, 2016, 2015, and 2014.

Share these quotes with your colleagues and networks, and check back to the original articles for more insights. See also our photo showcase of the startups that exhibited at TechSparks 2018, 2017, and 2016, and profiles of the top Tech30 startups over the years: 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, and 2011.

Execute locally but keep thinking globally. - Roee Adler, WeWork Labs

We are not the back office for the world, dammit! We are THE office of the world. - Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Paytm

Don't put any guardrail on your thought processes. You have to think big, think crazy -- that's when great things happen. - Sanket Atal, Intuit India

Today’s India, with all the incubators, government support and funding, seems to be the Silicon Valley of 1980s. - Anand Anandkumar, BugWorks

Practice and try in every way to strive in India before tapping into the Chinese market. In short, do it Indian style but put some Chinese masala. - Lucy Lin, GWC

We, as Indian founders, understand our business better and need to build our business accordingly. - Umang Bedi, Dailyhunt

Power centres are not important; all teams should align motivations to the same purpose. - Sameer Nigam, PhonePe

We always have a tactical and experimental approach, where we change our decisions overnight. - Ankush Sachdev, ShareChat

If we look at our growth story in India, it is humbling. Today, we have 400 million users on our platform and we are adding four new users every second. - Karam Malhotra, SHAREit

People in rural areas may be unpadh (illiterate), but they are not anari (dumb). They are very smart and they know what they want. If they see value in technology, they will adopt it. - Ritu Verma, Ankur Capital

44% of recent startups have been from Tier 2 and 3 cities. - Manish Ghosal, AP Innovation Society

Online is more trusted in Bengaluru. But, in Delhi or Greater Noida, online is considered fly-by-night. - Ramakant Sharma, Livspace

India is facing an industrial problem that even other nations are facing; classes aren’t able to keep up with the trends. - Simon Veredon, DADB

I feel anger, sadness and urgency - as we sit in this Taj room, thinking of education and technology. - Shaheen Mistri, Teach for India

The loading time for your landing page should be less than six seconds; if it crosses six seconds you have lost 50 percent of your potential users. - Ajay Datta, LinkedIn

You just need to keep re-inventing. Do not stick to one product. - Sanjay Katkar, Quick Heal Security

To get the right product mix, get as much feedback and keep testing, reiterating the product because the vision you have might not be the same with the customer's need. - Kanan Rai; Google Play

Do not dominate sales conversations - let customers speak and then offer solutions. Customers should be allowed to speak for 75 percent of the time. - Gaurav Singh, Verloop

If you really want to be successful, you need to focus on emerging needs, unmet needs and unarticulated needs of the consumer. – Arvind Mediratta, Metro Cash and Carry

Buyers want credit with the transaction, and in any new relation, nobody wants to give credit. - Sujeet Kumar, Udaan

The need of the hour is to make payments simpler and banks have to work with fintech startups. - Pravin Jadhav, Paytm Money

Different businesses require different manners of funding. There are businesses that require funding from the very beginning, some much later, and some never. - Divyank Turakhia, Media.net

Acquisitions cannot be a strategy but it should actually accelerate a strategy. - Ashish Bhasin, Dentsu Aegis Network

Ups and downs of markets are not truly indicative of your company. Just focus on the basic key metrics and growth will follow. - Manish Agarwal, Nazara Technologies

Capital doesn’t give you an excuse to get away without having a model. - Vipul Parekh, BigBasket

When money is there in the market, go ahead and raise it. Use money wisely but if you are in a growth-oriented business, take as much as you can. - V.S. Sudhakar, BigBasket

Nobody can give money to you until you are sure that you have got enough money to take care of all the emergencies and bear all your financial expenses. - Hansi Mehrotra, The Money Hans

We have seen a move from an era where corporations held all of the value to a world where platforms held value to where value is in the network. - Brendon Kim, Samsung Next

Blockchain helps bring transparency between parties who have never met each other; the contracts will be incentivised and transactions will be verified faster than centralised systems today. - Praphul Chandra, KoineArth

Technology is not the impediment anymore. Technology exists to be able to take data, mine it and get insights out of it. - Xavier Kurian, Dell EMC

Technology has been an infectious and ardent enabler. - Pankaj Gupta, Google Pay

It doesn't matter if you're a developer, user, or data scientist. Everyone should be able to use machine learning. – Rishi Singhal, Google Cloud

Founders have to be aware of their competitors - both local and foreign because tomorrow, foreign competitors can come to India. - Sateesh Andra, Endiya Partners

Entrepreneurship is a lonely journey. – Sarika Sivareena, PregBuddy

In this era, our practice has to change from what was conventionally taught in our business schools. - Sridhar Sambandam, Iron Lady

Younger startups are facing economic challenges to accommodate a mother when she calls for a maternity leave - this is a good problem to have. - Naiyya Saggi, BabyChakra

Everyone occasion is an opportunity. - Akshar Pathak, Zomato

In the process of making and breaking things we learn to learn. - Akshay Rajwade, Cure.Fit

Embrace imperfection, not mediocrity. – Jay Dutta, DesignUp

Failures go faster than success, and teach you not to repeat mistakes. - KT Prasad, Zendesk

Politics is part of everyday life, we need to figure out what matters and what is just noise. Cut out the noise. - V.Gayathri, LabourNet

Design enriches innovation and builds powerful brand experiences. - Kevin Gilboe, 3M Asia Pacific

Part speaks to the mind, but whole speaks to the soul. - Mayukhini Pande, Greenopia

Having design skills is important, from where you get it is not. - Abhinit Tiwari, Go-Jek

Art-based industry is still alive in India. - Ram Mohan Mishra, Development Commissioner, Ministry of MSME

Empathetic solutions will always outweigh sympathetic solutions. - Sandipan Chattopadhyay, Xelpmoc

Staying in is the new going out – the new normal. - Rashmi Daga, FreshMenu

Being inclusive is not a state, it’s a journey and it’s important to look at it holistically. – Tina Vinod, ThoughtWorks

In Canada we believe in diversity, and this is what drives innovation. We have a number of programmes to bring companies come to Canada, and set up a base there. - Eric Robinson, Consulate of Canada

For micro-enterprises, we are providing Rs 25 lakh up to Rs 2 crore without collateral. The Indian government is taking the guarantee. - Giriraj Singh, Minister of State for MSME

We want Karnataka to be the leader in creating social impact with innovation. Innovation should be bred by the government. - Priyank Kharge, Social Welfare Minister, Karnataka

Goa now stands for Golden Opportunity Available! - Rohan Khaunte, Minister of Revenue, IT, Labour and Employment, Government of Goa

Subsidies and government programmes are one thing but what matters is the culture. - Anna Kinberg Batra, Sweden-India Business Council

Today, it is important to have an entrepreneurial mindset, and even corporate houses look for employees with an entrepreneurial spirit and drive. - Winny Patro, Andhra Pradesh State Innovation Cell

We are social at heart and have to do things that make people trust us. - Ajey Gore, Go-Jek

Social accountability is extremely important for a social enterprise. - Sridhar Venkat, Akshaya Patra Foundation

It is important for influencers to talk about depression and try to erase the stigma around mental illness. - Prajakta Koli, ‘Creators for Change’

A female Indian athlete is very hard to come by. - Shagun Chowdhary, Olympic trap shooter

Let’s work in our villages, make the lives of people better, and make India proud. - Rajshri Deshpande, actor/activist

India is a very powerful market but with a lot disorganisation which can be fixed with technology. - Bhavna Kumar, SamsungNEXT

What was being neglected was the true innovation that was happening in India from our academic institutions and scientists. - Siddharth Pai, Siana Capital Management

We look at innovation in terms of how it defines usefulness. – K. Kuppulakshmi, Zoho

To tap into this vast pool of innovative ideas, we need to work as a partner in the digital ecosystem and encourage the spirit of innovation in the country. - Nitin Chugh, HDFC Bank

What India needs is 50 or 60 incubation hubs for deep science startups to flourish all over the country. – Nisha Holla, Biomoneta Research

If you have the right kind of companies in your cohort, the programme will be a huge success. - Ajeya Motaganahalli, NetApp Excellerator

Private accelerators only look for returns, but corporates look for large-scale value addition. They are much more invested in the startups. - Riya Aggarwal, BLS Accelerator

If entrepreneurial India turns into power India, and generates jobs for the poor India, India will become great again. - CK Kumaravel, Naturals Salons

When startups grow, India prospers. The more they grow, the higher the economy grows. - Emeka Afigbo, Facebook

India cannot grow without its entrepreneurs. They are the ones who will create the jobs. - Kishore Biyani, The Future Group

YourStory has also published the pocketbook ‘Proverbs and Quotes for Entrepreneurs: A World of Inspiration for Startups’ as a creative and motivational guide for innovators (downloadable as apps here: Apple, Android).


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