Entrepreneurship and Technology

October 6, 2008

Event: Nasscom Product Forum [25th Sept 08, Pune]

Filed under: Event — sachdev @ 4:32 pm
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Nasscom claims ‘now’ is the time for product based companies. They are promoting product based companies to be headquartered in India and targeting domestic market. Domestic market is said to be growing in many areas as we saw in banking / insurance / retail. Due to huge SMB (small medium business) presence growth will be phenomenal. Indian companies can have edge over MNCs in this market due to local presence, local knowledge – language & operations.

[Comments from people – India is still not a matured market. It is growing but not yet sufficient for product based company to just rely on India market. We should look for global market but yes at the same time we should be ready to customize product for Indian market as this will be the key. Also, experience from fellow entrepreneurs was that, Indian customers’ mindset is not as same and they are comparatively difficult to target]

Nasscom and Zinnov have done a good study of market and surveyed product based company in India to analyze the situation and forecast bright future for product based companies. Check the detail powerpoint here. Also check Nasscom blog – Indian Software Product Industry to touch US $12B by 1015.

There were interesting numbers heard from entrepreneurs about marketing their product. They say – marketing is not that expensive. Many were successful by crafting a right strategy for marketing (e.g. sponsoring appropriate forum / conference – not the very famous ones but those that are more specific for your target market, using right channel for marketing especially online, etc). Their experience is that marketing could be done wisely with just 2-3% of total cost. However, everyone stressed sales is critical and don’t club it with marketing. Sales have been estimated to take atleast 25% of the cost, so hiring a good senior and committed sales team is important.

Nasscom has tied with Intel to create an ecosystem for product based companies in India (link). They have launched Product Connect that will help product based companies get the right assistance right from inception stage. The process is said to be of 18 months where product based company will get guidance at every step, milestones will be established and progress will be monitored. Using resources of Intel is the main advantage for startup (resources mean document templates, process knowhow for product, engineering labs and benchmarking reports, marketing and sales channels and even other benefits like being part of Intel’s product directory which is distributed all over the globe). Looks interesting.

[Many questions were raised around why Intel is doing? Though there were vague answers, I think Intel sees the benefit of having a look at product based company closely in which they can invest with ‘Intel Capital’ arm. Lot of worries from entrepreneurs was seen – IP protection, technology lock-in with Intel, etc. Entrepreneurs need not worry – Intel has no restrictions with technology and all process is said to be for the benefit of entrepreneurs. This looks comparatively good compared to similar initiatives from Microsoft and other biggies. But Microsoft and other biggies are good option, if you target product based company to be acquired by them in near future]

Intel also hosts Intel Business Exchange – one stop IT solution. It has never been that simple – that’s what they claim. (bxindia.intel.com)

Nasscom also has other forums which are interesting for product based company to be involved with (e.g. Nasscom Product Forum) It seems like being a Nasscom member has many benefits such as getting involved with initiatives likes Nasscom-Intel product forum. So for product based companies, it is worth looking into all activities initiated by Nasscom.

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