TechSparks 2022 recap – 80 quotes from India’s premier tech innovation summit

By Madanmohan Rao
December 29, 2022, Updated on : Thu Dec 29 2022 06:59:21 GMT+0000
TechSparks 2022 recap – 80 quotes from India’s premier tech innovation summit
Products, platforms, policies - YourStory’s premier TechSparks conference covered the full spectrum of tech entrepreneurship. Here are 80 quotes with highlights and key takeaways!
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Launched in 2014, StoryBites is a weekly feature from YourStory, featuring notable quotable quotes in our recent articles. Share these gems and insights from TechSparks with your colleagues and networks, and check back to the original articles for more insights.


In this special collection of quotes from YourStory’s TechSparks 2022 coverage, we present expert insights on innovation, digital transformation, and tech scaling by successful entrepreneurs and business leaders.

See our earlier quotes compilations from conference editions in 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, and 2014.

We have divided these 80 quotes into ten categories: Startup foundations, Scaling, Tech dynamics, Fundraising, Sectoral trends, The India story, Creator economy, Economic downturn, Policy and regulation, and The road ahead. Check out our profiles of the Tech50 startups of 2021, and Tech30 startups over the years: 2022, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, and 2011.


YourStory wishes our readers, innovators and ecosystem leaders all the very best for the holiday season, and a year of success and scale ahead in 2023!

1

Startup foundations

Entrepreneurship is a journey where the highs are super high, and the lows are really low. - Kaivalya Vohra, Zepto


You have to pick and choose the battles that you want to fight, you can't have everything on day one. - Ramesh Parthasarthy, Freshworks

One of the things you need to develop as an early-stage founder is how to calibrate advice that really matters. - Shailendra Singh, Sequoia Capital

Building a product is like making a song. - Tony Fadell


If you want to start building a company, build it for the right reasons. - Aadit Palicha, Zepto


The storytelling part becomes key for founders when you're actually attracting talent. - Roopa Kumar, Purple Quarter


No matter how great you are in what you do, unless the timing is right, things don’t click. - Sharmin Ali, Instoried


It is critical to be able to listen, accept and constantly work towards improvements. You should be able to have the ‘sahansheelta’ to say—‘Yes, I could be wrong. - Ritesh Agarwal, Oyo


When you are privileged enough to make such a big impact, it is criminal to become complacent. - Byju Raveendran


[As a founder] you need to have perseverance of a crow, focus of a crane, attention like that of a dog, even when asleep. - Rishi Das, IndiQube

Focus on building a strong founding team and better communication within the organisation. S-curves will follow. - Abhay Hanjura, Licious

Show your work, share your process, iterate in public. That's a great way of living a life. That's a great way of building a company. - Gaurav Mishra, Adfactors PR


You live and die by your reputation. So if you build a reputation for good quality, you'll get lots more business. - Kumar P Saha, ndhgo


If we change [from know-it-all] to learn-it-all, it helps to stay grounded and bring out solutions. - Sabyasachi Goswami, Perfios


Being an entrepreneur, one must make tough decisions, go through failures, have the grit to start all over again, listen to that bug, and go ahead. - Mabel Chacko, Open Technologies

2
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Scaling

Your company will stop scaling if you stop scaling personally. - Shailendra Singh, Sequoia


Once you get the playbook right, scale fast. - Pranjal Kumar, Eruditus

When an organisation is scaling, they can offer ESOPs as incentives to ensure that the team members are hitting milestones. - Sharat Khurana, Carta

An IPO is never the endpoint; it’s always the starting point. - Skanda Jayaraman, Qapita-Marketplace


Building a unicorn is a milestone, that some significant value has been created. It does not mean further milestones won’t come. - Pankaj Makkar, Bertelsmann India Investments


While individual products can become multi-billion dollar businesses in developed economies, it’s extremely important to build multiple products here in India where markets are not so deep. - Rahul Kothari, Razorpay


Acquisition is costly, and constantly looking at acquiring new customers for each round is not sustainable. - Amit Srivastava, Rakuten

In incremental solutions through startup partnerships, there is less experimentation and more plugging in gaps. - Abhay Tandon, TVS Motors

Scaling geographically is a great way for startups to welcome diversity and have cross country knowledge in their teams and benefit from it. - Juliane Frömmter, EU-India InnoCenter


Brands are built in the consumers' mind and not just with your products or communication. - Aditya Ruia, Beco

2

Tech dynamics

Large scale, democratic and equitable platforms that offer serious outcomes is what technology enables. - Amit Zunjarwad, ShareChat


Data is a collection of zeros and ones but insights are much more contextual. - Ramgopal Subramani, Perfios


Data is one of the most important resources that differentiates companies of today from those of yesterday. - Saurabh Odhyan, FreshToHome

The most competitive advantage companies have is how well they build using data. - Vinay Agarwal, MongoDB

When you talk about no-code/low-code product stacks, you are talking about optimising time to market using less resources. - Samyak Jain, Agora


Every company is realising that if they do not embrace a digital-first strategy, they are doomed. - Mithun T Dhar, Red Hat


A lot of offline stores, especially during the pandemic, have set up an online platform to receive their payments online. - Nakul Jain, Paytm Payments Services


Open source is the default engine for innovation. - Satish Mohan, Dhiway


The most important quality to becoming a leader in the engineering space is whether an individual is an “I” person or a “We” person. - Dr Sureshkumar Rajasekar, Optum Global Solutions (India)


Decentralised finance [cuts out intermediaries] but is not easy for consumers to use. - Shailesh Lakhani, Sequoia Capital India

Every startup needs to have a basic level of cybersecurity in place, otherwise it can be a serious disruptor. - Sandhya Vasudevan, Indian Angels Network

More and more companies are going cloud-native; your infrastructure is remote and your employees are also working remotely, risks can come from anywhere. - Jayesh Gadewar, Scrut.io


You'd be surprised how many organisations don't have a repository, or a catalogue of all their APIs. - Sumant Narayanan, Akamai Technologies

3
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Fundraising

Investors want their capital back. How are you as a founder going to enable return on capital if there is no business model which leads to profitability? - Salil Thanawala, Edelweiss


The amount of LP interest I have seen in the last six months in India is probably more than what I have seen in the last eight years. - Amit Somani, Prime Venture Partners


The advantage of debt is you can build without the dilution aspect of the business but then it brings with itself a certain responsibility that there is enough cash flow in the business. - Ashish Fafadia, Alteria Capital

Taking money from someone to build a business is an obligation, and not money that you made. - Nithin Kamath, Zerodha

They (VCs) are not in the business of building business, they are in the business of entering and exiting businesses. - Ankur Warikoo


The domestic sector for investing is very vibrant. India has given $80 billion dollars back in the last 18 months to foreign investors which is a big number. - Vishal Kampani, JM Financial

5

Sectoral trends

The IT/ITeS sector contributes about 9 percent of the country's GDP. The revenue today is split between traditional and digital skills. - Priya Madhavan, NASSCOM


In proptech, you have to offer solutions that are homogeneous, and your platform should be able to operate on its own with less involvement from humans. - Harkaran Singh Boparai, MapMyHouse


China is the physical goods manufacturing factory of the world, India can become the digital goods manufacturing factory of the world if we focus on Web3. - Sandeep Nailwal, Polygon


In the next five years, next-day deliveries will be dead. Consumers will want groceries and essential items faster and within hours. -  Kabeer Biswas, Dunzo


In India there are no brands which do Rs 10,000 crore. It needs multiple brands across verticals. - Darpan Sanghvi, The Good Glamm Group

If you embed insurance in other products, people will buy it. So that’s one way of increasing adoption. - Ravi Ranjan, Pazcare

People who are playing mid-core, hard core games are very monetisable. - Piyush Kumar, Rooter


Home improvement is a high experience, high involvement category so technology has almost unlimited uses. - Manasvi Sharma, Lowe’s India


Signalling really matters. Until there is equality, we need to make an outsized effort. - Priyanka Gill, The Good Glamm Group


Counterfeit is a technology problem to solve. Quality is relative. - Vidit Aatrey, Meesho

8
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The India story

We still do not have a unicorn from India in the agritech sector, indicating a huge opportunity for players in this industry. - Abhishek Bhagat, JM Financial


There is a rise of the D2C brands in India which is poised to be a $100 billion dollar market by 2025. - Prashanth Aluru, TMRW


ONDC by design is a network of networks. So it is completely open access, it's unbundled and interoperable. - Thampy Koshy, ONDC

In India, we spend about 14% of our GDP on our supply chain, which is twice the average of the world. - Swarup Bose, Celcius

As Indians, our ability to be able to leapfrog and adopt technologies is generally high. - Sax Krishna, 3i Infotech


Pandemic was a wake-up call as most of the SMEs are family-run. The lockdown gave them time to strategically think the way ahead. - Sidhya Senani, BAF Consultants

9

Creator economy

Building a business today in content when you do not own the distribution, is really hard. When you do not own the distribution, you just own the content, which is purely creative. - Ayush Wadhwa, Owled Media

We are at a stage where experiences are going to become far more important than the content itself. - Advait Gupt Kulfi Collective

Customers' willingness to pay, particularly for gaming, the arrival of cloud gaming, superior graphics, and the emergence of immersive gaming experiences is now helping convert the audience into willing-to-pay subscribers. - Shashank Randev, 100X.VC


As a content creator, one business is not enough. The business is all about reinvention. - Ranveer Allahbadia, BeerBiceps


Algorithms are in place, but it is the storytelling that is winning. Whichever content creator is growing today is doing so by beating the algorithm with constant persistence and hard work. - Manish Pandey


Content builds relationships, and relationships build trust, and trust is what brings revenue. - Ashwarya Garg, HYPD Stores


You have to keep sane and do whatever you are doing at your own pace… If you stress about the likes and subscribers, then you will not be able to do your job too well. - Bhuvan Bam


Anything that has worked in India was because of a movement. It is a very chaotic country. - Shlok Srivastava

Over the years, there has been a paradigm shift and now a lot of the marketing budget is moving towards creators. - Rohit Raj

You have to create that connection with your audience by experimenting with content, and expanding. - Tarini Shah


Content creators are so special these days because they have the superpower of telling a story. - Ajay Yadav, Simplified

8
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Economic downturn

Fiscal prudence and better execution will ensure that you can tide over that situation [economic headwinds] in the most cost efficient and effective manner. - Abhishek Gupta, Clevertap


There is some dampening of spirits but India has excellent entrepreneurs and our digital ecosystem is only evolving for the better. - Mandeep Julka, Chiratae Ventures


Investors are taking longer to make their decision but good companies will continue to get funding though founders should be prepared for this slowdown period. - Shanti Mohan, LetsVenture


The fundamentals of building a business will not change and founders will have to navigate through this phase. There might be tough questions for them but it is not all gloomy. - Ankur Khaitan, Fireside Ventures

Smart people who know exactly what to do are ready for the winter and know this is followed by spring. - Gopal Srinivasan, TVS Capital Funds

I think the growth stage has slowed down, largely because it's not a founder problem. It's actually an industrial problem. - Anand Chandrasekaran, General Catalyst


Every industry goes through ups and downs, where one rebuilds strategies and life goes on. - Sudhir Sethi, Chiratae Ventures


The only thing that matters during tough times is the solution. Be very missionary about "doing the work" instead of reminiscing about the good times. - Kunal Bahl, Titan Capital


The wind and tide don’t wait for anybody. All I can do is adjust my sails. - Ashish Hemrajani, BookMyShow


The preparation for the worst-case scenario is a founder’s responsibility. - Vani Kola, Kalaari Capital

9
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Policy and regulation

The scale of the digital revolution—the India Stack—has not been achieved elsewhere. That is what we need to leverage and capitalise on. - Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman


While UI/UX is important, it is also important to ensure the checkout is compliant with laws and guidelines. - Ranjan Kant, Arthmate


Government has done 100X more than what was expected [for the EV market], and they’ll continue to do more as we innovate; now we, the startup ecosystem, have to take it ahead. - Bhavish Aggarwal, Ola

Today many regulators are extremely positive about deep tech startups in this country. - Ravi Chhabria, NetApp

Cybersecurity is such an important factor today that any misadventure can actually lead to an arrest by the government. - Rahul Tyagi, Safe Security

10
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The road ahead

A lot of fintech has happened in the last five years, and there'll be a lot more happening in the next 10 years. -  Harshil Mathur, Razorpay


I hope that there is more awareness on genetic conditions and the next generation benefits from this. - Dhanya Ravi, Aasman Foundation


Children must learn important skills like tech literacy and problem solving skills. - Pooja Goyal, Avishkaar


Fundamentals of money must be taught in schools and colleges. - Nithin Kamath, Zerodha

This is India’s moment; why can’t we make the country of our dreams in our lifespan? - Bhavish Aggarwal, Ola

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).