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Fuelling entrepreneurial passion at India Entrepreneurship Summit 2015

The summit focused on various topics that were of deep relevance for budding and seasoned entrepreneurs everywhere.

While Indian entrepreneurs may have built successful business to rival global giants, it is the innovative spirit and resilience of its small cities and bustling towns that offer an interesting insight into the Indian states' entrepreneurial preparedness.

Recently, ET Edge, an Economic Times Initiative founded to empower multiple industries and segments through the dispersion of critical business knowledge via strategically developed conferences and summits, on February 26 held the 'ET Edge India Entrepreneurship Summit 2015' in New Delhi, with the theme - 'Fueling Entrepreneurial Passion'. Franchise India was the supporting partner of the event. 

The Summit was marked by the presence of entrepreneurs across diverse sectors, all of whom analysed current industry trends and charted the way forward for the next generation. These virtuosos revealed their secrets, which will doubtlessly help budding entrepreneurs avoid some common pitfalls and build their own successful empire.

Speaking on the occasion, Deepak Lamba, President, Times Conferences Limited, said, "India is a young country, especially in the entrepreneurial space. We can rightly claim that some of the best success stories in entrepreneurship are now coming from India, across all sectors. With this summit, we aimed to address the issues faced by the industry and chalk out a way forward."

Rajiv Pratap Rudy, Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, was the Chief Guest at the event, with the keynote address given by Shiv Khera, Founder, Qualified Learning Systems (USA) Author, Educator & Business Consultant) to a rapt audience. "Entrepreneurship is not only risk taking, there is a lot of integrity involved in it. Entrepreneurship is all about ownership," Khera said.

The summit focused on various topics that were of deep relevance for budding and seasoned entrepreneurs everywhere. Among the topics was a panel discussion wondering 'Can entrepreneurship be taught?' While discussing the topic, Amarendra Sinha, Special Secretary, Ministry of MSME, Govt of India, commented that, "The abolishment of the License Raaj saw the first wave of entrepreneurship sweep across the country, and we need an ecosystem that will see entrepreneurs thrive. Today, we should be looking to start that wave again."

The event also witnessed the launch of 'Indian states on entrepreneurial confidence and readiness' report by Amway India and Indicus Analytics, a premier economics research firm in India. The report revealed that high rankings for states like Bihar, Assam, Jharkhand, Chhatisgarh and West Bengal, in terms of entrepreneurial attitudes, indicate that apart from a traditional entrepreneurial culture, a lack of livelihood opportunities may significantly trigger openness toward entrepreneurship. Many of the states that have an advantage due to their open mindedness toward entrepreneurship do not have other facilitating factors to translate their latent entrepreneurial potential into new startups.

"Today Entrepreneurship is no longer bound by age or experience but it is open to all. Fuelling the spirit of entrepreneurship is one of the key agendas of government," said, Sunita Quadros, Business Head, Times Conference Limited-BCCL.

Of note as well was the panel discussion on 'How to get funds: How finance helps and why you must secure it.' The panel members agreed that getting the timing and type of a finance injectionright is essential. Giving further food for thought, Dr Mukesh Batra, Founder & Chairman, Dr Batra's, remarked that "We have all failed, failed and then succeeded. Being passionate about your idea is very important, always keep that in mind."

Dinesh Shahra, Founder & MD, Ruchi Soya Industries also had a word for the wise, stating that "When aspiring entrepreneurs are building asset-based capital, you should always be conservative in leveraging it."

Rounding off the series of panel discussions was a lively conversation on 'Making it work - Get the job done, & work with everybody'. The focus of the discussion was squarely on the people that help make any business successful. Ravi Narayan, Director, Microsoft Ventures, summed up the discussion by saying, "One must rope in people that are good at what they do, that share your creativity, vision and passion in addition to delivering results when on the ground."

Additionally, a workshop was also organised on 'Scaling traction' by Microsoft Venture, helping later stage startups learn how to grow their customer traction by up to 10x. Narayan and Meetul Patel, General Manager, India, Microsoft, addressed the workshop, which saw several eager entrepreneurs in attendance.

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