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The Smart Techie was renamed Siliconindia India Edition starting Feb 2012 to continue the nearly two decade track record of excellence of our US edition.

Hatching for Success

Aritra Bhattacharya
Saturday, September 30, 2006
Aritra Bhattacharya
Vishal Gupta’s time in IIT-Bombay was coming to an end, almost. He was sad, but heck, his life was already stuff that most others could only dream of! For what else occupies the aspirational canvas of an average middle-class boy—IIT education, followed by a degree in the U.S., in his case Cornell University, and then…

The dilemma was just six months. The semister in IIT would end in March, the new one in Cornell would start in September. The intervening period was too long to take. Around him, in hostel no. 6 of IIT-B, a few heads were conferring animatedly. The Kanwal Reki School for Information Technology had just kicked off its pilot incubation center. Making use of the facilities, his peers had launched Right Half and Myzus. The excitement in the air unnerved him, till he finally took the plunge. Just for some time, he swore, and then he would fly to Cornell.

Gupta decided to put his final year project on finger print technology to use. He approached the incubation center, and was asked to submit a business proposal. What went across was his resume attached to the final year project. The ‘business plan’ was approved! Since the center had just started out, he wouldn’t be required to pay for using the facilities, he was told. That was the beginning of his new venture: Herald Logic.
Alumni visiting the center gave Herald Logic some assignments to work on. As employees, he zeroed in on a few third year students. The company started getting more work, and the events panned out quite differently from what Gupta had planned. He chucked his plans of pursuing M.S., even let go of three promising job offers, and stayed on in the incubator for two years. Rs 2 lakhs was all he spent in building Herald Logic during that time—savings of 38 lakh, if done outside India. The company graduated out in 2003, and was acquired by Australian firm Value Chain for around Rs 13 crore in May this year.

Just like Gupta’s fingerprinting project that led to the creation of Herald Logic, there are thousands of ideas bustling across the country, waiting to be explored. Unfortunately, most of them don’t see the light of commercialization.

Indigenous Hatcheries; Indian brains

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