Here are some eye-opening statistics – only ten percent of start-ups are successful. Of this ten percent just one percent go on to becoming unicorns (Failory). In 2018, 82% of startups went under on account of cash flow issues (Fundera) 42% fail because of misreading market demand (CBI Insights).
With such statistics, starting a business looks even more difficult. But not so for TiE Nurture Accelerator mentees. Here are some happy statistics. Of the total 211 start-ups that were selected for TiE Pune’s Nurture Accelerator in the past eight years, 39% (84 companies) came out successful in terms of growth and revenue, market standing, getting professional investors or successfully selling the company. Some of them have scaled the heights of success, like Early Salary, Altizon, Xeon Waste Management, Gig India, Pepper and more. “If there is anything that can turn passion into success it’s this Nurture Accelerator” says Anirudh Singla, founder Pepper and past mentee.
Started in 2013 by the Pune chapter of TiE, Nurture has grown to include start-ups from other chapters as well. Says Ajay Bhagwat, who was part of the founding team, “As Charter Members, we always had young entrepreneurs telling us that they could not get funding and on the other hand there were VCs who’d ask us if we knew of any good start-up to invest in. This disconnect was not just about money finding a start-up as we found that not many entrepreneurs were not ready enough to spend the money right even if they got it. There was a need to have a structured program that would prepare them for the path of entrepreneurship in all ways besides just money. Also, we realized that we had the experience, expertise, and the will to help young entrepreneurs. And not just in one industry but across industries and in all aspects related to business. So, we launched Nurture for Pune’s start-ups.”
What started for the entrepreneurs of Pune soon spread to other cities too. In its ninth edition this year, Nurture has selected 60 start-ups from Pune, Surat. Nagpur and Hubli. Using in-house skill, experience and expertise of its charter members has helped young companies carve out big success. Says Akshay Mehrotra, founder of Early Salary, “What Nurture did for me was to teach me to think big. Really big. So, while I was thinking of becoming a successful digital lending company, at TiE Pune’s Nurture program I was forced to think beyond that. To think of not only becoming a great digital lending company but think of becoming a digital bank.”
Starting from validating an idea to the several issues related to entrepreneurship, such as assessing the market, becoming funding ready, managing people and so on Nurture Accelerator assigns two mentors to each start-up founder and lays out the goals that need to be reached in a set time frame. Says Jitendra Tanna, chair of the Nurture Accelerator Program, “the mentors work closely with the start-up to validate the idea, prepare the go-to-market strategy, scaling the business and help them to get ready for funding. As part of the nine-month program, all mentors and mentees meet physically at the two-day Boot Camp which will start from March 12 where each start-up will go through an intense process of evaluating their strategy and the way forward.”
Success need not be elusive. “At Nurture the mentors endeavour to take us there,” says Vinay Nathan, founder of Altizon, who joined the Nurture program 6 years ago and today is recognised as the top 10 companies working for the auto sector. “It’s about getting the right advice at the right time and increasing your probability of getting things right.”
With this Nurture Accelerator, start-ups now have not just a 10% but a 39% chance of success. Passion is a great quality all entrepreneurs must possess, but how far can that take your company?