Day 2 at TechSparks 2022

Day two at TechSparks 2022 was as eventful as it was promised. Here's a look back of today's lineup from the startup ecosystem, including the likes of Byju Raveendran, Kunal Bahl, Vani Kola, Kabeer Biswas, and more.

Day 2 at TechSparks 2022

Saturday November 12, 2022,

5 min Read

Hello Reader,

The second day of India’s most influential startup-tech conference–TechSparks 2022—began with a no-holds-barred conversation with Byju Raveendran on various controversial topics surrounding the eponymous edtech firm he heads. 

We had Kalaari Capital founder Vani Kola discuss the potential pitfalls startups may face on the path to IPO, and the mantra for scaling up.

The day also saw fascinating sessions from trailblazing entrepreneurs and investors like Snapdeal co-founder Kunal Bahl, Dunzo’s Kabeer Biswas, and BeerBiceps creator Ranveer Allahbadia. 

But, as they say, the best is kept for the last!

After two power-packed days, Day 3 will see Chief Guest Nirmala Sitharaman, Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs, in a fireside chat with Shradha Sharma, Founder and CEO of YourStory. This is the second time that the Finance Minister will be taking the stage at TechSparks.

There are also sessions with Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai and Health Minister Dr K Sudhakar who will talk about Karnataka’s achievements as well as the state’s tech agenda for the coming years.

We also have Sequoia Capital Managing Director Shailendra Singh diving deep into the ongoing funding winter, while Zomato Founder and CEO Deepinder Goyal will share his insights on what it takes to run a successful food delivery business. 

ICYMI: Video game company Atari has turned 50, and the company has released an anniversary-special pack of more than 90 games. Nostalgia abound!

In today’s newsletter, we will talk about 

  • Navigating the funding crunch 
  • BYJU'S future outlook
  • Decoding Web3

Here’s your trivia for today: What is the oldest iPhone still in production?


Navigating the funding crunch 

Speaking at TechSparks 2022, YourStory's flagship startup-tech event, Titan Capital Founder Kunal Bahl offered tips for entrepreneurs navigating the current funding squeeze.

Spotting the talent:

  • Via Titan Capital, Kunal has invested in startups including Mamaearth, Ola, Razorpay, Urban Company, KhataBook, Shadowfax, Bira91, Uni Cards, and Jupiter.
  • Kunal looks at three primary factors before picking startups—the quality of the team, market stickiness, and unit economics.
  • Having been on both sides of the fence—as a founder and as an investor—Kunal says the only way to get through the imminent funding winter is to not lose hope, acknowledge the fact that a crisis is upon us, and channel founder passion into coming up with a solution.
Kunal Bahl


BYJU'S future plans

Byju Raveendran is unfazed about his company's losses in the previous financial year and is confident that his edtech company will pull it back in FY 2021-22. The edtech company BYJU'S booked a staggering loss of Rs 4,588 crore in the latest financial year. But Byju expects revenue growth of 3X and losses to be halved in the 2021-22 financial year.

Bouncing back:

  • Addressing the recent losses, Byju said those were due to decisions taken by the company during the pandemic when its banking and non-bank partners stopped supporting financing.
  • When asked about investments due from Sumeru Ventures and Oxshott, Byju confirmed the two firms had not invested in BYJU'S yet, and pointed out that, because of macroeconomic conditions, a lot of deals had not closed.
  • Talking about the layoffs at the edtech startup, Byju said it was as painful for the company as it was for those who were affected.


Decoding Web3 

At TechSparks 2022, industry leaders Shailesh Lakhani, Ashish Singhal, Priyeshu Garg, Neeraj Khandelwal, and Harsh Rajat shared their perspectives on Web3, decentralisation, and the current market crises.

What lies ahead:

  • Shailesh Lakhani said since Web3 technology is still in its infancy, the sector will, in the future, experiment with varied business models and new approaches and cited the example of NFTs and their growth.
  • For Priyeshu Garg, Co-founder of Router Protocol, decentralisation is a tool kit. “Instead of giving power to stakeholders, users will have more power.”
  • Looking at the recent market conditions and centralised exchanges losing millions of dollars due to simple mistakes, the panellists suggested the implementation of proof of reserves, which involves comparing on-chain assets held in reserve to off-chain liabilities. 

News & updates

  • Crypto meltdown: FTX will initiate bankruptcy proceedings in the United States while its chief executive Sam Bankman-Fried resigned, the embattled cryptocurrency exchange said on Friday, triggering what could be one of the biggest meltdowns in the industry.
  • Official badges: Twitter Inc said on Friday it had reinstated the "official" badge given to some accounts, days after removing it, while several users reported the new $8 subscription option for the blue verification tick had disappeared.
  • The drop: Toshiba Corp has cut its full-year operating profit outlook after a 75% slump in second-quarter profit–dismal results that heighten the uncertainty surrounding its prospects for a buyout deal.

Here’s what you should watch out for

  • TechSparks 2022 Day 3

What is the oldest iPhone still in production?

Answer: 5C

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