directdialogsFirst, Senthil Natchimuthu from Coimbatire, India, discussed directdialogs. Senthil is doing a small business marketing solution that combines loyalty programs with email marketing and campaign management. The product roadmap is quite ambitious, and I was concerned about the viability of a minimum viable product with such a large scope. It turns out that the product has been built over the last two years, and a MVP is already in place. Now, Senthil is working on the positioning and go-to-market strategy for the business.
tapTankNext, Yael Greenberg from Tel Aviv, Israel, pitched tapTank, a concept stage business where Yael wants to help consumers barter, collaborate, and compete on specific tasks. She gave a series of use cases from group travel to competing in marathons, and the one that resonated with me was barter. Each of her use cases is potentially a separate business and I advised her to focus on fleshing out the barter concept.
PinkVillaThen Jeu George from Redmond, Washington, presented PinkVilla, one of the largest user-generated content-driven portals for Bollywood aficionados. The site has 11 million page views a month, and Jeu expects 2011 revenues to be about $250k. The site's unique visitors are at about 600,000 per month.
Jeu is trying to figure out his financing options, and the majority of the discussion today was around target market, product roadmap, and monetization models, which are the factors that would drive investment strategy.
This is a promising business, but clearly under-monetized. The revenue models need to be revisited, and the customer acquisition strategy as well. Their penetration in India seems relatively low, given that Bollywood is really an Indian phenomenon, its international following notwithstanding.
Reach360Finally, Kiran Nagarajappa and Rajesh Agarwal from Bangalore, India, pitched Reach360, a neat advertising optimization solution to help agencies, advertisers and publishers get better eyeballs and click-throughs out of their current campaigns. The product has been validated on campaigns by a dozen major Indian brands and agencies, and has shown great metrics. Now, Kiran and Rajesh are looking to take this to the next level. Last week, they won Microsoft's Indian Startup Challenge grant of $40k.
Very interesting company with lots of great possibilities of working with major display advertising players, ad networks, and of course, advertisers and agencies.
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Sramana Mitra is the founder of the One Million by One Million (1M/1M) initiative, an educational, business development and incubation program that aims to help one million entrepreneurs globally to reach $1 million in revenue and beyond. She is a Silicon Valley entrepreneur and strategy consultant, she writes the blog Sramana Mitra On Strategy and is author of the Entrepreneur Journeys book series and Vision India 2020. From 2008 to 2010, Mitra was a columnist for Forbes. As an entrepreneur CEO, she ran three companies: DAIS, Intarka and Uuma. She has a master's degree in electrical engineering and computer science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.Roundtable photo by Shinichi Sugiyama