Tech, talent, ecosystem: test your business creativity with Edition 43 of our quiz!
Lateral Sparks, the weekly quiz from YourStory, tests your domain knowledge, business acumen, and lateral thinking skills (see the previous edition here). In this 43rd edition of the quiz, we present issues tackled by real-life entrepreneurs in their startup journeys.
What would you do if you were in their shoes? At the end of the quiz, you will find out what the entrepreneurs and innovators themselves actually did. Would you do things differently?
Q1: Digital advantage
Scalable architecture and security features are key for organisations to harness the digital advantage at volume. Effective online experiences can help roll out attractive customer offerings as well. But what is another vital enabler for a digital advantage?
Q2: Electric vehicles
The rise of the electric vehicle market bodes well for sectors like logistics, with potential for large-scale deployments. EV cost and performance are key considerations here. But there are other factors at play in the EV sector as well – what are these factors for decision makers to assess?
Q3: Hiring for growth
Many companies hire employees largely based on their educational background and work experience. Other criteria are a mix of hard and soft skills. But what’s another key employee trait that could actually lead to more effective hiring?
Q4: The Gen Z market
Adding a tech experience to existing offerings is one way to attract digital native Gen Z consumers. However, it takes much more than the digital quotient to retain them. What are other characteristics of Gen Z consumers that brands must address to better engage them?
Q5: Understanding a downturn
Recessions and downturns may not be the best time to start a new company, as investors and large firms tighten their belts and scale back on funding or launching new initiatives. But there’s another interpretation of this situation – what is that, and what does it mean for founders?
Congratulations on having come this far! But there’s more to come – answers to these five questions (below), as well as links to articles with more details on the entrepreneurs’ solutions. Happy reading, happy learning – and happy creating!
A1: Digital advantage
“Tech can’t do much in the absence of a digital footprint,” observes Gaurav Lahoti, Vice President of Engineering at Khatabook. The fintech platform started off as a digital ledger for accounting and reconciliation for small and medium retailers.
But thanks to the amount of data generated, it has now expanded to offer new services and products such as lending and neobanking. Read more about the growth of this fintech player here.
A2: Electric vehicles
“The success of the EV-led logistics sector depends on the ecosystem developed around it, including partnerships, sourcing the partners, two and three-wheeler rentals, vehicle maintenance, financing partners, etc.,” explains Aashirwad Deshmukkh, Co-founder, Howdyy.
Founded in 2020, the Bengaluru startup has tied up with Hero Electric, Ampere Scooters, Log9, and Bounce for fleet requirements. It provides them with eco-conscious tech-driven EV-led logistics solutions. Read more about its offerings at the level of warehouses and last-mile delivery here.
A3: Hiring for growth
“You have to hire people oriented towards learning as opposed to those who only have the right skill set,” explains Srikanth Velamakanni, Co-founder, Fractal. The startup helps clients leverage data and algorithms for effective decisions, using automation, AI and self-learning systems.
“So, we started investing significantly in our learning and training programmes within Fractal and started hiring people with that mindset,” he adds. Read more here about the startup which entered the unicorn club in 2022.
A4: The Gen Z market
“The important characteristic of Gen Z consumers is that they are purpose-driven with transparency being key,” explains Radhika Ghai, who started Kindlife as an ecommerce marketplace for the wellbeing community.
“Self-care and planet care go hand-in-hand, values matter, and personal and business goals with sustainability must align,” she adds. Read more here about her platform that lists only plant-based, organic, toxin-free, eco-conscious, and cruelty-free products.
A5: Understanding a downturn
“Sometimes the best time to start is when there is a recession, because, for the next 12 to 24 months, a lot of larger companies will be heavily focused on revenue-generating products instead of venturing into other territories that are just making news,” explains Anish Achuthan, Co-founder of fintech startup Open.
His advice for young and aspiring entrepreneurs is that the current economic downturn could actually be a good opportunity to launch and scale. Read more about this Bengaluru-headquartered unicorn neobank here.
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).