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Growth of Student-led Entrepreneurship More than 70 per cent of the start-ups fail due to the paucity of funds.

By Sania Gupta

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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You are a student and you have initiated a start-up with your million dollar idea. You are in a dilemma as to how you can fuel the growth of the student-led business. There is study performance pressure as well as a lot of initial investment done in the business. You want to maintain a proper balance as well as ignite the growth of the start-up. Now you need to analyze the strengths and demerits around you. Try and weigh the assets available as well as the key problem areas. Try to fix each roadblock one by one.
Here are some handy tip-offs which will help you assist make decisions in the long run:

1. Financing

For each enterprise, the primary problem arises in terms of funds. Bootstrapping funds is a universal trauma. You are a student and smart enough to avail the student loans available at the lowest rates possible. Look out for the agencies and banks rendering student loans or start-up loans and weigh the cost of each. Even better, negotiate with a rich uncle who has faith in you and is ready to invest with proper terms and conditions to eliminate too many legal implications.

Choose the right option to make your decision feasible in the long run. More than 70per cent of the start-ups fail due to the paucity of funds. So be careful in choosing your option.

Ayush Jain, Founder of MyStudyDestination seconds, "While pursuing my MBA in Los Angeles, we came across state-run venture capital funds providers who were ready to sponsor and fund a few aspects of the start-ups which we were planning to initiate as a part of the university workshops. The easy availability of funds was a major motivating factor."

2. Access to resources

What better place than a college library full of resource material, adroit professors ready to help at any call and the ever-helpful student union body! Being a student entrepreneur you have the advantageous access to unlimited resources which can be put to use. You should explore and read all the options possible to give a suitable direction to your radar.

Vaibhav Gupta, Director of Bicop International states, "During the initial days of my start-up, my friends and seniors at college were the most helpful, ready to assist me in any technical matter. With arms open, the hackathons and experienced students provided me with the technical assistance."

3. Campus start-up competitions

The competitions held at various college levels to encourage various start-ups are brilliant platforms to showcase your talent and they motivate you to work harder for the hefty prize money. Yes, usually the reward is a heavy sum of money which could be enough to substantiate your finances. Sometimes the reward is even more enticing when it is a collaboration with bigger multinationals and all your initial woes are taken care of.

Perminder Singh Malik, CEO of Rapid Skillz says, "The inter-college start-up competitions are the most awaited events where the most novel ideas are felicitated and brought to light. Such platforms encourage the young minds to let the ideas come out of their cocoons. The cash prize or encouragement in any form for the winner is always a boost to the start-ups"

4. Networking is the best source

The networking events provide a huge podium for young entrepreneurs to showcase their skills, build their database and garner clients and support. The most important of all is to seek help and advice from experienced innovative minds who have expertise in their fields. These events help people to build a huge base, recommend each other and seek help. Such events have become common and are gaining more relevance with the increase in the number of start-ups and entrepreneurs. Some of them have regional relevance, while others operate beyond the domestic borders. Ayush swears by the relevance and importance of networking events. Sachin Aggarwal, CEO of Share India Pvt. Ltd. says, "The networking events have become a learning experience in each meet. These provide a growth platform for the generation of new and out-of-the-box ideas."

The Bottom Line:
Student-led enterprises are the start-ups with the most unique ideas. Growing and sustaining them along with studies is a task. Yet one cannot be oblivious of the facilities provided by the campus as well as various organizations to facilitate the growth and smooth sailing of the student start-ups. The economy is booming with the upsurge in the number of the student enterprises and the unique business propositions they offer.

Sania Gupta


Sania Gupta is also Founder and CEO, Digital Kangaroos, an author, entrepreneur, marketer and blogger. And as a career coach at My Study Destination, she has helped thousands of students realize their dreams.
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