Investment in start-ups is the buzz word in today’s time. Startups are attracting investors’ attention to fund their innovating business ideas, which are providing masses a solution to their problems. In such a scenario, we caught up with Vinayak Burman, Founder Partner at Vertices Partners during the Franchise India Show 2016 to know more about what is happening in the investment world and what he would like to suggest to budding entrepreneurs.
Current investment scenario in India
I think the most important thing that is happening right now as compared to last year is the checks and measures have come into place. Last year, we saw that an idea gets funded without probably a proper business plan but today that is not the case.
Moreover, there are lot of growth deals, lot of B deals are happening but most importantly cautious deals are happening and essence of cautious deals means that checkers and makers are more, both from the investor perspective.
Therefore, in terms of promoter entrepreneurs, it is all about ensuring that you keep your burn under control so that it is not just earn and burn phenomena that come into place.
I think from here onwards it is just going to get better. The pedigree of investors are going to get better, pedigree of investments per say investees are going to get better and overall it’s a very bullish run, it’s a very interesting phase, it just going to get better and better.
Do you think entrepreneurs should look for funding in their initial days?
I think it’s a mix. If people are starting something or they have started up something with an essence that they immediately need to look for funding so I don’t think that’s the right approach.
One also needs to realize that funding at the end of the day comes with a lot of accountability because it is not your money or my money it is somebody else’s money that you are taking. When you are taking that person’s money you need to be accountable to say that you are using it for the right purposes, you are using it for scale, for growth and that can only happen when you have your basic construct of your business correct, when you have showed the proof of concept.
You have to say that yes, this is possible that post here you can go for some scale, these are the numbers, this where you dream, this what you need to do. As a result, then the investor has that much of confidence to say that yes there are nuances from where you are using the fund to scale to different level and that’s where funding becomes that much more possible. If you expect to say that just because you have incorporated a company, you want to get funded, firstly it is not a practical thought and secondly it is not easy to get by.
Advice for the entrepreneurs
As an entrepreneur, what one needs to bear in mind is - essence of accountability, need to have your basis correct, you need to concentrate on the fact that you are not looking at scale just by burning, you are actually looking at things which are more tangible. You need to state that your numbers are there because you are truly profitable.
Treat other person’s money with respect and if you do, you will go across and scale and you will add that much more value which will let you see other investors coming in as well. So the pedigree as such of that investment, your company and the entrepreneur increases.
Your take on entrepreneurs entering entrepreneurial world just because it appears glamorous
I think that’s not actually the right outlook because after points in time you reach a certain level or scale, there is a certain amount of visibility, there is certain amount of coverage that comes and this is because you have become identified by the success by doing something correctly. So what people need to realize is that behind that visibility there is a lot of blood, sweat and hardwork. All those who are successful today are not successful just by coming up and saying they have done nothing and still they are successful today. They have literally given their blood and sweat probably in large quotient.
So your basis-essence should be keep your head grounded, keep your visibility and thought process focused in a manner that adds value to your shareholders, adds value to your company and most importantly adds value to your team. If you think you are doing this for glamour than entrepreneurism is not the world for you.
According to you which are the sectors that will rule 2017?
It’s going to be a blend. You will see lot of momentum in technology, financial technology and other aspects that are coming in. But technology will be always there because right now it is the most important penetration point that actually allows mass skill penetration. I think a lot of consumer driven activities will come into play as well. So consumer space, financial inclusion and services will see lot of activities in coming year.