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CSI event: Startup Student Symposium And Launch of and-beyond.com
mahboob

During the management committee meeting of Computer Society of India (CSI), Hyderabad chapter on 18-Apr-2012, I had suggested that we conduct a meetup between students and startup founders. We took the idea forward and I got quite involved in the organization. We had the event, “Start-up Student Symposium and Launch of and-beyond.com” on Saturday, 09-Jun-2012 at CSI office, Secunderabad. Here are the details of the half-day session:


Inauguration

The event was inaugurated by past Chairman of CSI Hyderabad, Mr. Raju Kanchibhotla, who is the CEO of Logic Designers. Inviting the speakers and dignitaries, Mr. Raju stressed on the need for continuous interaction between the academia and industry, knowledge sharing and exploring opportunities for mutual benefit.

Addressing the gathering, Dr. A. Govardhan, Vice Chairman, CSI, Hyderabad chapter and Director of Evaluation, JNTU said that this would be a very useful session for the students, who can take inspiration from the start-up founders and become job providers instead of being just job seekers. He urged the students to be active participants and state their requirements.

Maj. Gen (Retd) Dr. R.K. Bagga (Chairman Avantel Limited, Advisor Outreach, IIIT – Hyderabad & Chairman, CSI-SIGeGOV) informed the audience of how a large percentage of start-ups in Silicon Valley in the USA were launched by people of Indian origin. We need to focus on making something of our own, be it in hardware or software.

The Speakers

The first speaker, Azeemuddin Mohammed of Honey Eaters said that the main idea of going for his start-up was that he was always wanted to be independent. (Full disclosure: Azeem is my brother-in-law). He spoke about two examples of how their software benefited clients.


1) Fitness Center: The scope of the project was to increase productivity. In the application developed, the trainer loaded his customer data and based on the statistics, a report is generated for their weekly activity. This process help him save 2 hrs effort per day and gave him in turn one new day.


2) Package Slip Automation: This project was done for a customer that was printing UPS label and then wrote the shipping details by hand. Azeem’s application integrated the UPS package slip with her store and then generated it with the all the required details on it for shipping. It also generated bulk slips. This way he increased their productivity as well reduced errors.


Azeemuddin informed of their plans of launching a simple project management tool on SaaS model.


Hiteshwar Vadlamudi, of IN3 Consultants Pvt Ltd, recounted how he made his first product as a third year student of Gokaraju College of Engineering, which automated the institution processes because every college and department in JNTU / affiliated colleges was using Excel sheets to maintain the data. Though the product was not successful, he learned valuable lessons, gained experience in the industry in mobile computing and had two startups including YQ Labs. He suggested that students could make mobile apps to solve problems in different areas like medical shops and traffic monitoring.


The CFO and Co-Founder of Walking Tree, Pradeep Lavania (we share a common alma mater, VNIT Nagpur) advised the students to be passionate about their objectives. Whether they wanted to do a job or start their own company, it is important to clearly identify the one thing they want to do, being passionate about it and achieve excellence. He offered many tips to the audience in the running of operations. Business ideas and development don’t need a lot of money, operations do. After a certain stage, the business should drive the operations.


Conclusion

Following the presentations, I conducted a panel discussion. The Hyderabad start-up ecosystem was discussed. Though the infrastructure and IT scenario were active, it was felt that a bit of inertia had crept in due to many reasons. Another point mentioned was that other states were going ahead of Andhra Pradesh in e-governance.


Hiteshwar Vadlamudi and his team launched their site and-beyond.com in its alpha version. Their video presentation discussed the problems of students where they face lack of appropriate information for advancing into industry or further studies or have just pure entertainment. The site will be a one-stop shop for all of the students’ needs.

Mr. Raju presented mementos to the speakers on behalf of CSI. As a closing tip, he suggested an idea to the students to prepare a mobile app for car maintenance which would be very useful to car owners.

Event photos

https://plus.google.com/photos/106131417973352041621/albums/5752727935776949057

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32865274@N03/sets/72157630063289041/

or for slideshow

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32865274@N03/sets/72157630063289041/show/


http://good-times.webshots.com/album/582982436tPNzlo

or for slideshow

http://community.webshots.com/slideshow/582982436tPNzlo?mediaPosition=1


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