So how do you raise money for your company and break the world record for the fastest financing – and get Anand Mahindra to be one of those investors? Here are the rules, but first the background.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge launched the UK Government’s Tech Rocketships initiative to find the innovative Indian companies to go global from India. My role after showing Their Royal Highnesses around some of these companies was to host the launch with four initial companies pitching.
As Senior Dealmaker for the British Government’s Global Entrepreneur Programme I am responsible for India and China and I was about to have the best day of my 10 years in the role.
Showing the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in India around some of the most innovative companies, I broke the world record on the quickest funding for a company – 60seconds.
Here’s the story. The Royals arrived at a social entrepreneur centre in Mumbai. I had two jobs. Show them around the Venture Capitalists from the UK who were on the delegation, led by the Head of the British Government’s Venture Capital Unit, Aekta Patel (aka by coincidence, my wife). “These British investors put money into British companies which solve some of the world’s and therefore India’s biggest problems in climate change, education, energy.” I explained to the Duke and Duchess as I introduced them to my wife.
Then it was time for my next role – go on stage and introduce four Indian companies and do a quick fire Q&A with Anand Mahindra and Mohandas Pai – a bit like Dragons Den. This was all part of the UK Government’s Tech Rocketships Campaign which the Duke launched moments earlier.
Here is how one of them – Project Mudra – teaching the world’s blind braille got funding from Anand Mahindra in 60 seconds from my inviting them on stage:
Solve a major problem: This company solves a huge global problem, not just and Indian one. And it’s a social problem – not some fashion blog. This is important. Smart money likes important.