Business Today

Calling all young entrepreneurs

Announcing the launch of the TiE-Canaan Entrepreneurial Challenge 2008.

     Print Edition: May 4, 2008

The first edition of the TiE-Canaan Entrepreneurial Challenge attracted hundreds of eager start-ups when it was announced in October 2006 and three companies, Infozech Software, Vegayan and 6 Dee won the competition and access to both mentors and investors to grow their fledgling businesses.

What is the TiE-Canaan Entrepreneurial Challenge?
It is a national business plan competition started by The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE), a non-profit global network of entrepreneurs and officials, and Canaan Partners, a Menlo-Park, California-based VC firm. It is designed to help budding entrepreneurs take their businesses to the next level of growth.

How is this different from other business plan contests?
Only those people with registered and functional companies are eligible to take part in the competition. These companies also get a chance to bag investment as well as mentoring by some of the best-known entrepreneurs and VCs in the country.

Who can take part in this competition?
Ambitious entrepreneurs across the IT and services sectors are welcome to participate in this event.

Who will judge the participants and what will they look for?
Industry veterans such as Raman Roy, Pramod Bhasin, Saurabh Srivastava and Sanjeev Bikhchandani, along with well-known angel and VC investors such as Mahesh Murthy and Alok Mittal will judge this competition.

How can you participate?
Application forms can be downloaded from www.tienewdelhi-.org/canaan. Completed forms must be submitted before April 28, 2008. After the initial screening, eight participants will be shortlisted and invited to present their plans before the jury by end May/Early June. From this, the jury will announce the three winners of this competition.

Now, ambitious entrepreneurs across the IT and services sectors (including internet, technology, software, telecom, mobile, education, BPO, KPO, etc) will get another opportunity to get noticed by some topnotch VCs and industry executives, as the second TiECanaan Entrepreneurial Challenge (with BT as the media partner) rolls into town.

This nationwide business plan competition, set up to encourage innovation and build an entrepreneurial ecosystem, is open to early stage entrepreneurs, who have already incorporated their companies.

Industry veterans Raman Roy, Pramod Bhasin, Saurabh Srivastava and Sanjeev Bikchandani along with well-known angel and VC investors, Mahesh Murthy and Alok Mittal, will be the jury for this competition. TiE-Canaan has roped in as partners Indian Angel Network and Viedea to provide funding and mentoring for winners of this contest.

Contestants will go through three rounds of selection. The initial screening will be done by knowledge services provider Evalueserve, after which eight companies will be selected for an intensive nurturing programme by TiE, and finally three winners will be announced at the TiE Entrepreneurship Summit in Mumbai. Incidentally, last year’s winners were provided a global perspective on their businesses from Phil Anderson at INSEAD, Singapore, besides the mentoring from TiE. This year, the eight shortlisted companies will be mentored before they make their final presentations.

The three winners will get a further three months of mentoring after the event. So, if you think you have the next big idea to emerge from India, then you are welcome to participate in this unique event. You can download the the application form from www.tienewdelhi.org/canaan, fill it and submit it before April 28, 2008. After the screening, the top eight participants will be invited by end-May/early-June to present their plans before the jury. Finally, the three winners of this competition will be announced.

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