September, 02, 2014

The joy of learning

A good friend (and a regular reader of The Smart CEO) and I had this deep discussion about the concept of narrative fallacy, a term coined by Nassim Nicholas Taleb, author of The Black Swan. Taleb uses the term narrative fallacy to explain that humans tend to take a complex series of events and oversimplify these into simple stories, ignoring a lot of random, but important events that take place in-between. In essence, Taleb believes that as humans, we often ignore the chaos in the world and the role luck plays in all successes and failures.

read more

The finer nuances of scaling up a real estate business

In conversation with Irfan Razack, chairman and managing director, Prestige Group, one of South India’s leading property developers with interests in residential, commercial, retail, leisure and hospitality sectors


Branding lessons, from the heart

A peek into some wonderful anecdotes on branding from Brand Owners’ Summit Bangalore, co-organized by afaqs! and The Smart CEO


Building multiple startup brands

Krishnan Ganesh, a serial entrepreneur, believes that brand building opportunities in India are unique. He shares with us his experience from Tutor Vista, and


Diamonds in India’s rough

Madan Padaki believes that today’s rural youth has raw talent, entrepreneurial spirit, global aspirations and access to technology. Through Head Held High, he aims to provide them with the right opportunities and eradicate rural poverty in the long run


The personification of a corporate brand

Mindtree’s Krishnakumar Natarajan believes that a corporate brand is actually an extension of its internal culture and how the brand is felt, perceived and thought about by various stakeholders who interact with it. In his talk at the Brand Owners’ Summit, Natarajan talks from the heart about how brands evolve continuously, just like how people do, and why it is crucial for marketers to keep this in mind as they formulate a branding strategy


Healing a mother’s heart!

Dr. Mohammed Rehan Sayeed, a cardiac surgeon by profession, started Motherhood Hospitals, a mother and child care single-specialty chain, to fill the lacunae in the delivery of healthcare in the country

read more

An eye for early detection

Unitus Seed Fund-backed Welcare Health Systems has developed affordable eye-screening devices to fight diabetic retinopathy, an illness which is likely to affect one in four diabetes patients in the coming years

read more

Capitalising on the power of data

Advitiya Sharma, along with 11 co-founders, set up as a map-based home search portal that offers more than 100 data points, at just a click

read more

For the true blue fans

Sahil Baghla, co-founder,, the online fan merchandise retailer, on how his company raised funds from and how he plans to utilise those funds

read more

Betting on e-commerce packaging

Dynaflex, supplier of tamper evident packing material to e-commerce companies, casinos, investigative agencies and educational institutions in India, plans to raise US $10 million in six months to fund its expansion and aims to record revenues of Rs. 100 crore by FY2017. Today, over 45 per cent of its revenues comes from the e-commerce sector

read more

A truly global social media agency

KRDS, one of the first few European Facebook marketing agencies, eyes the Indian market for growth. Its key weapon: the 1200 social media campaigns it has executed in 30 countries, so far

read more

The mobile accelerators

Today, Robosoft Technologies, a mobile app development firm, generates 75 per cent of its revenues from outside India. But, given the pace at which India is transitioning to smartphones, Rohith Bhat, the founder, believes that the scales may shift in future. Bhat thanks the company’s early-stage success to its first client, a dream one at that, Apple

read more

Building a global brand

Indian spirits manufacturer, Kyndal Group, is in the process of building a global brand. What’s encouraging is that the brand has seen over 300 per cent revenue growth since 2006 and is currently in a consolidation phase. This augurs well for Kyndal as it prepares to take the fight to foreign brands

read more

Dreams - of the past, and for the future

Lucia, the critically acclaimed Kannada film has two lessons for its business audience; despite taking a planned route to build a brand, there’s always an unknown element that will draw a customer to it, and the potential of crowd funding to convert ideas to products and dreams to reality

read more

Get cracking on your customer feedback

Being active on social media and mobile, having face-to-face interaction with customers, and building conversations through personalised emails are some key tactics that brick and mortar and online retailers can use to secure customer feedback

read more

Why diversity initiatives are crucial for a great workplace

Given that today, workforce diversity is a key driver of innovation and success, companies across the world need to place an emphasis on diversity training and develop conducive policies to support them

read more

In love with businesses

Sanjay Kamlani, angel investor, serial entrepreneur and founder of Pangea3, the legal process outsourcing firm that he exited, says it is the process of building a business rather than a glamorous product offering that keeps him thrilled. Kamlani explains: “How do we grow our teams, how do we synchronise seamlessly between clients, employees and investors, how do we maintain a very high retention rate? – it is dealing with questions like these that energise me every single day.” That is the sole reason why he has slowed down his angel investment endeavors to pursue his next entrepreneurial stint

read more

The juggler

Varun Agarwal, founder of Alma Mater, the college t-shirt store, and best-selling author, wears many hats. In his talk at the Summit, he focused on why it’s important for youngsters to just pursue their various passions, even if they are unrelated to each other

read more
Editor's Pick
  • The story of a serial entrepreneur

    The drive to go through the hardship of starting up multiple times is one key reason why Krishnan Ganesh, founder and CEO of TutorVista, is a four-time entrepreneur. He shares with...

  • The Wise Leader

    Narayanan Vaghul, former chairman, ICICI Bank, draws ideas from American Generals during World War II, the life of Mahatma Gandhi and even Sachin Tendulkar’s cricketing career to...

  • Rahman. Rockstar.

    How A.R.Rahman has almost perfected the art, or should one say the business of continuously re-inventing himself...

  • How you can own a slice of India’s next billion-dollar startup?

    An inside peek into Mumbai Angels, one of India’s first angel investing clubs, and several reasons why angel investing can be exciting and rewarding...

  • Plan A to Plan B and beyond

    An entrepreneur’s move from Plan A to Plan B must be ‘process-oriented’, says John Mullins, professor of management practice at London Business School and co-author of ‘Get...

  • Inventor. Entrepreneur. Investor.

    Vinod Dham, who is acknowledged as ‘Father of the Intel Pentium’ and currently founding-managing director at Indo U.S. Venture Partners, has constantly reinvented himself to st...

  • The People Man

    Infosys’ Mohandas Pai is a man on a mission. His biggest challenge today: meeting the aspirations of 1,30,000 Infoscions...

  • It’s not a myth; it’s a belief

    Devdutt Pattanaik shares his experience as the chief belief officer of Future Group and how his understanding of India has helped shape his career and the ethos of Future Group...

  • The business of quick service restaurants

    For an Indian QSR, the best way to approach a business is to make smart choices - on menu, format, location and process. And for those who have managed to build a strong foundation...

  • Sanjeev Bikhchandani’s search for a Naukri

    Info Edge’s executive vice-chairman, Sanjeev Bikhchandani, launched his first Internet portal,, in 1997 when India had only 14,000 Internet users. Today, he is churnin...