“As I grew up, I always wanted to study in a place like this. Now I’m here to deliver a lecture.”, revealed Mr. Mahesh Murthy while speaking on the topic “Fundas of Starting Up” at Conquest 2009, an annual International business plan competition organized by Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership (CEL), BITS Pilani.
“An entrepreneur is a person who realizes at a very early age that he or she is different. I don’t have to be like anyone else. Entrepreneurship is about living your DNA. I’m as different from you as my fingerprint is from yours.” He said while emphasizing on the uniqueness of each of those in the lecture hall, which was filled to capacity by then.
Through examples, he then proved that the location of a start-up doesn’t really matter anymore and claimed that a world class company can be built in Pilani itself which evoked a huge round of applause from the attendees to convey their agreement.
He continued to point out that world leading companies such as Google, Ferrari, YouTube and eBay never advertise. “The trick is to get your customer so thrilled, that he cannot stop talking about your service or product.”
While encouraging students to start-up early he said, “You don’t need to learn what it is like to be an employee to know what it is like to be an employer.” He then downplayed the role of Venture Capital funding by remarking that most of the world’s greatest entrepreneurs never received any such funds. The ultimate source of funds is the revenue developed from the customers, develop a good enough revenue model and your job is half done.
He concluded by revealing that an entrepreneur leads a lonely life. “It is emotionally very tough to be an entrepreneur because you might have to oppose your parents, your friends and almost everyone you ever held dear.” He advised the students to have friends who share the same dream so they can get through the whole experience together. “Experience a shared illusion.”
– Report by Ayush Kanwar
Centre for Entrepreneurial Leadership
Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani