Posts Tagged TiE

Entrepreneurship in Niche Markets – Chris Anderson to give Keynote Address at TiEcon 2013, Preview

Recently, while doing some search, I read an interesting sentence, “In an era without the constraints of physical shelf space and other bottlenecks of distribution, narrowly-targeted goods and services can be as economically attractive as mainstream fare”. I read and re-read the statement that is the theory behind the book “The Long Tail”, by author, entrepreneur, economics genius, and CEO of 3D Robotics, Chris Anderson. Chris Anderson will be giving a keynote speech at 2013 annual conference.

Chris Anderson was with The Economist for seven years, prior to joining WIRED magazine in 2001, as editor-in-chief. In 2004, he wrote an article entitled “The Long Tail”, which he later expanded into the book, “The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More”. The book argues that products in low demand or that have a low sales volume can collectively build a better market share than its rivals, or exceed the relatively few current bestsellers and blockbusters, provided the store or distribution channel is large enough. As you think about it, it seems a no-brainer. But it took the genius of Anderson to make a clear and explicit case, and then prove it.

An example of this would be something that I have long thought about with regards to book stores. In the days of tablets and kindles, the brick and mortar book stores are increasingly a thing of the past. But if you ask people, they remember the book stores, with the fondest memories and often deeply mourn the shutting down of book stores. Why? It is because, people like the idea of picking up and reading a book, in a quiet setting, even for a few moments. But, they just don’t have the time to make a special trip to the bookstore. However, consider if the book stores divided up by genres. Then different businesses picked up a genre, and devoted a small sub-section for that genre, in their store. For instance, consider Toys R Us having a book store section with children’s books, with sofas and comfy chairs for book reading and Starbucks providing a small section for mystery and romance books, and Home Depot providing a comfy section to read “Do it yourself” type of books right in their stores. I would assume that people will likely go and pick up a book to read, while sipping coffee or to take a break in shopping, and then will buy it, before leaving the store.

Anyway, this is the thinking behind The Long Tail, that, in the era of constraints of physical space, narrowly targeted goods and services can generate a great deal of interest. Specifically, since online retailers can stock virtually everything, the sales generated by the number of niche products can easily outnumber the big hits. And given the current complexity in people’s tastes, preferences, and varying lifestyles, when consumers are offered infinite choices, the true shape of the demand curve is revealed and it happens to be less hit centric, than previously presumed.

Chris Anderson is currently the cofounder and CEO of 3DRobotics, a drone manufacturing company. We have heard about drones being used in warfare. These drones allow the military to put a camera in the sky anywhere, anytime, and are touted as the future of warfare. But only geeks are aware of and dabbling in civilian drones, right now. However, practical applications for personal drones are emerging, as they are becoming more reliable and sophisticated. They are gradually being used by farmers, scientists, those doing wildlife management, and those tracking endangered species.

Anderson has now become a champion of innovation in manufacturing and his vision might have potential to bring manufacturing industries back to our heartland.  Hopefully, he will share his vision for the future of manufacturing with combination of cloud computing, open source and 3D printing.

Register for the conference at .

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Open Flow Enabling Innovation in Network Computing – Dr. Guru Parulkar to speak at TiEcon 2013 (Preview)

In the past, computing centered around hardware based silos of network and storage.   With data centers of the future defined by software defined infrastructure, efficiency can be boosted as resources get divided.  In the earlier model, because of the network, you had to build pods or tiers.  Now tasks can be moved around and ability to move applications that need high performance, is increased.

Dr. Guru Parulkar, Executive Director of Open Networking Research Center (ONRC) and Consulting Professor of EE at Stanford University, will talk about how OpenFlow enables networks to evolve by giving a remote controller the power to modify the behavior of network devices.  The growing OpenFlow ecosystem now includes routers, switches, virtual switches, and access points from a range of vendors.   Parulkar has been in the field of networking for close to 20 years.  He joined Stanford University in 2007 and helped create three large projects – OpenFlow and SDN, POMI 2020 (Programmable Open Mobile Internet 2020), and SEDL (Stanford Experimental Data Center Laboratory).  Parulkar is now spending most of his time on OpenFlow and SDN and on ONRC including OnLab.

Will Open Flow and SDN gain momentum quickly and become a new norm of networking?  Come and hear Parulkar talk about how Open Flow and SDN is increasingly deployed in the production network of universities, with an aim to develop comprehensive intellectual framework for SDN.  Register for TiEcon 2013 at .

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TieCon 2013 Keynote (Bharat Desai – Chairman, Syntel) Preview

TiEcon in Silicon Valley is the place where entrepreneurs are made and nurtured; a place where self-made entrepreneurs share success stories.  How do they harness the larger trends and survive the economic hiccups?  Here is what we may look forward to in one keynote address.  You can register for the conference at .

Bharat Desai, founder and Chairman of Syntel is a self-made entrepreneur, who started Syntel in 1980, with his wife to be, Neerja Sethi.  Together, they make one of the few successful husband-wife teams, in business.  While studying in college, they started Syntel with $2000.  The computer consulting company completed an initial public offering in 1997 and, according to Desai, Syntel has already created 15 millionaires. He expects to raise the number to 100.

The company was originally providing software staffing services to local corporations.  It is now a renowned global provider of Information Technology (IT) and Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO) solutions spanning the entire lifecycle of business and information systems and processes.  With global development centers in India and the US, with almost 17000 employees in India and growing, and 2012 annual revenue of $723.9 million, Syntel sees growth ahead.  The economic downturn was forcing Syntel’s clients to improve their competitive positioning and operational efficiency and Syntel saw this challenge as their opportunity.  Priding itself on being “small enough to listen, big enough to deliver”, Syntel focused on providing integrated IT and KPO services that can help reduce cost, with a combination of incremental outsourcing, improved offshore leverage and increased productivity, and rate reductions.  While these initiatives helped its clients, they also provided enhanced margins to Syntel.

Syntel is also leveraging the inescapable fact that globalization is an irreversible mega-trend.  Recently the company was named one of the “50 Best Managed Global Outsourcing Vendors” by The Black Book of Outsourcing ( ).  Syntel does not see outsourcing as simply a model to cut cost but to truly harness the talent and innovation from the world wide pool.  Syntel’s clients are continuing to focus on running their core businesses and outsourcing non-core functions with an aim to reduce cost, improve quality, speed, and flexibility in implementing solutions.  Syntel is a “Partner of Choice” among several prestigious Global 2000 corporations and has won many awards. Going forward, Syntel sees Healthcare and Life Sciences industry, facing regulatory compliance and data sensitivity challenges, as a major growth opportunity.   Growth in on-demand services, grid and cloud computing, and IP based solutions may bode well indeed for Syntel, in the years to come.

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Sam Pitroda heralded communication revolution in India & will give a keynote address at TiEcon 2012

Today technology permeates every aspect of our lives.  Workplaces could not exist without the help of technology.  Organizations utilize technology to sustain and remain current, to scale and drive business forward, to connect and communicate, and to outperform competition. When it was as yet unclear, how the technology would impact society, there were certain pioneers driving the technology revolution.  Sam Pitroda was one of them.  As a technology advisor to the Prime Minister, Rajiv Gandhi, way back in 1984, Pitroda heralded the telecom revolution in India.  By 1980, before he got a call from the PM, Pitroda had become a multimillionaire, with nearly 100 patents.  Pitroda is an inventor, entrepreneur, and a policy maker.  He is widely believed to have been primarily responsible for India’s communications revolution. Improvement in communication in turn has impacted ordinary people’s access to water, literacy and more.  Pitroda is unique in not just mastering the business of making a fortune, but mastering the business of effective ways to give back to the society. For a while, he lived a double life, having made most of his fortune in the US, in high tech and making money from his inventions, but returned to India, to make social contributions.  His logic was clear.  The ecosystem in the West was great for innovation and the ecosystem in India was just ripe for social contribution.  “Here, in the West, everything works and does not need to be fixed, whereas operating a business is difficult in India”, Pitroda had said.  The very technology revolution that Pitroda began in 1980, with proliferation of bright yellow public call office (PCO) boxes, has ultimately not only enabled entrepreneurs to return to India to make a fortune in now thriving India, but better communication has enabled the world to work with India, to mutual benefit.

Who better to give a keynote at the world’s largest entrepreneurship conference, TiEcon 2012, than Sam Pitroda?  Perhaps this giant of a man might have just the right recipe for the world to step up the job growth and economic ride forward.  Please sign up at for best price that will be valid till March, 31st.

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Wish List in Open Letter to TiEcon 2012 ( Planning Committee

Dear TiEcon Organizers:


You have kicked off the planning for TiEcon 2012, with continuing goal to deliver the best TiEcon ever.  Successfully year after year, you have delivered a conference that is vibrant with opportunities for professionals, looking to advance their careers, staying connected with their peers, looking at staying in touch with the emerging trends, and looking for access to angels and VC community.  Year after year, you have exceeded the goal to deliver the best TiEcon, by adding new and exciting offerings, like TiE50, TiE Expo and more, by attracting the best and most sought after speakers and panels, and by keeping the enormous volunteer pool engaged, with exciting volunteering opportunities.  It is perhaps the only conference where hundreds of volunteers often spend hours toiling in the trenches, and then claim to get more out of this conference than at any other conference.


So what is going to be the focus this year?  Well, we have our wish list.  Readers, please leave comments about what you wish to see at this year’s TiEcon.  We hope to see more discussion on social media and where will be next disruption in social media.  Television has always been inherently social activity.  People gathered around the tube when TV was just introduced and friends still gather around the tube to enjoy sports events like Super Bowl, Academy Awards, and movies.  Will there be re-socializing television by integrating it with social media.  Is Pinterest the next big thing in social media?  Even in it’s “by invitation-only” beta phase, the company has attracted 7 million plus visitors and is driving more traffic to company websites and blogs than YouTube, Google+, and LinkedIn combined.  With growing cybercrime with huge and costly implications for corporations, how will we enhance network security?  Besides managing new and emerging systems, how will companies protect data and information?


Will TiEon focus on Energy and Life Science industries?  Despite the major Soyndra fiasco, we would like to see some discussions on solving energy challenges? Apparently, there are huge potential advantages to making cheap fuel from seaweed or macro-algae and Bio Architecture Lab inBerkeleyis currently building huge seaweed farms.  It remains to be seen how it will scale.  Will there be discussions on electric cars with durable and long lasting battery, even on harnessing solar power more effectively, and other potential breakthroughs to deal with the energy challenges.  I will absolutely love to see some serious focus on Life Science industry.  Some of the current major buzz words are the new frontiers of synthetic biology, wireless devices, and the continuing interest though not much progress in personalized medicine (with the exception of Herceptin and recent launch of Zelboraf).  Scientists will be heavily focusing on understanding the brain, and perhaps mapping the brain by zooming in on single neurons (brain has billions of them).  Understanding breakdowns within the neurons will enable targeted gene therapies, besides the current focus of personalized medicine, in oncology.


And finally, what new and innovative ways will the TiEcon enable entrepreneurs and other dedicated professionals to come together and leverage what each has to offer, to mutual advantage?  Each year, TiEcon has responded to the external opportunities and challenges with new offerings like extended and serious focus on Women’s Forum to encourage and ensure women professionals’ participation at TiEcon 2011, Outer Realm sessions at 2010 TiEcon, to challenge perceptual boundaries in technological, marketing, and cognitive realm and allow for cross-functional collaboration, Business Bootcamp sessions in 2009 to provide hands-on tips to the entrepreneurs, during the fledgling economy, and so on.  Now in 2012, the economy is on the path to gradual recovery but uncertainty and funding challenges linger.  We have high expectations that TiEcon 2012 will give yet again a positive boost to the professionals to follow their dreams, and offer sessions and strategies with tools and techniques, to enable them to achieve their dreams.  Readers, please leave comments about your wish list.


And friends, I have also heard some great info regarding best price offer for TiEcon 2012 that will be offered and will be valid only on February 21 and 22.  Stay tuned to my tweets and postings and I will share any news I get soon and don’t forget to register at

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