May 24, 2019
Assam Startup – The Nest initiated a meeting with the high net worth individuals (HNI) of Guwahati towards forming an Angel Network in the state for the startups on 9 May 2019. Sushanto Mitra, the CEO and Founder of Lead Angels, India’s first privately owned startup investing network, flew down to the city especially to attend the meeting and edify the HNIs about the value of investing in startups.
During the discussion, Sushanto pressed on the need to invest in the startups not just for the noble act of supporting new companies with disruptive ideas, but also for fetching handsome returns.
“A lot of entrepreneurs investing in new startups have made more money than they do from their own business.” Sushanto Mitra.
Sushanto further added that the whole world of investment is moving towards the world of startups owing to the new-age business’ incredible quality to create dominance out of meager capitals. They have the capacity to scale rapidly and become future monopolies. And their biggest strength lies in their ability to morph themselves according to a situation. A lot of angel investors acquire shares in the startups in order to learn these ingenious business techniques from the startups and apply them in their own business.
The founder of Lead Angels validated that though an angel network is formed with the primary motive to invest in startups, it graduates into a much valued business network. “Angel network becomes a way of doing business together,” Sushanto stated.
Owing to the fact that investing in startups is always a risky proposition, the HNIs inquired about the right methodology for deciding the startups to put their stakes on. Sushanto stressed on the importance of quality evaluation to ensure minimum loss. “Companies will go down. But if your evaluation is good, the rate of failure will be lesser,” he said.
Sushanto, nevertheless, was quick to point out that startup incubators can vastly improve the survival rates of the startups. And that’s where Assam Startup – The Nest will play a crucial role.
He suggested the HNIs to get an exposure to the startups that are getting invested in states with matured startup ecosystems, like Bangalore and compare them with the startups in Assam. They might also invest in one of those startups and learn as an angel investor. And then while the local ecosystem progresses, an angel investor might find interesting companies to invest in here.
“Start mentoring the local startups. When the right time comes, you will be the best person to invest in the startup you know in and out. And when you invest, the investors from outside will also be encouraged to invest in that startup,” he appealed to the HNIs present at the meeting.
Sushanto also answered to the queries from the HNIs, especially related to the processes involved in angel investment, the legal formalities, as well as the tax benefits of investing in startups.
Earlier during the meeting, Mrs. Manjula Saikia Bhuyan, Additional Secretary, Department of Industries & Commerce (FP), Government of Assam, thanked the HNIs for attending the meeting and appealed to them to nurture and mentor the startups that get selected for incubation at Assam Startup – The Nest. Quoting the crucial need of the hour for taking forward the products of innovation for production, she requested them to play a central role in commercially lifting up innovative ideas and products by young startups in Assam.
Pranjal Konwar, COO, IIM Calcutta Innovation Park, welcomed the HNIs and briefed them about the Assam Startup Policy as well as about the role of the IIM Calcutta Innovation Park as the implementing partner of the state-owned marquee incubator, Assam Startup – The Nest.
The swashbuckling incubator is gearing up to induct its first batch of startups for incubation. And this meeting was one of the important groundwork done towards creating favorable funding opportunities for startups.