IITGN Innovation and Entrepreneurship Centre (IIEC) organised a Fund Raising Masterclass today as part of its Masterclass Series at the institute. This masterclass aimed at providing the participants a broad overview on fundraising strategy by entrepreneurs, valuations, how and when to approach investors, and trending technology areas. Mr Shripati Acharya, co-founder and managing partner at Priven Advisors, a Venture Capital & Private Equity firm in Bengaluru, guided the participants on The Art of the Startup and gave some insightful survival tips for navigation.

Mr Acharya holds a BTech from IIT Madras, MS in Computer Science from Stanford University and MBA from Harvard Business School. He has diverse experience in the US and India addressing worldwide markets. He has been a business lead at Cisco and a co-founder of Snapfish, the world’s largest photo site which was acquired by HP, among others.

In his talk, Mr Acharya emphasised on the choice of a right startup idea by the entrepreneurs because they are going to invest their years on building it. He described problems faced by start-up entrepreneurs as ‘opportunities to solve’ and advised participants to find out pain points of the customers/the market to come up with a good startup idea.

In a startup, the entrepreneur’s time is more important than the investor’s money because it’s a one-shot deal for the entrepreneur and for investors, it’s one of the many. If you have thought through the idea, you can convince the investors more confidently.

Mr Shripati Acharya

Co-founder and Managing Partner, Priven Advisors

He explained the need for a good team, how to choose and approach potential investors. He also warned the participants to be cautious about bad investors as they may prove risky for their venture. He underlined the need to gain the necessary experience before launching a start-up just after the college but also gave examples of some exceptions. At the end, he gave two advice to the participants to be successful, “Be optimistic and be a good listener.”

Students, academicians from various educational institutes and representatives of startups and incubation centres from Gujarat and Rajasthan participated in the masterclass.