Lateral Sparks, the weekly quiz from YourStory, tests your domain knowledge, business acumen, and lateral thinking skills (see the previous edition here). In this 87th edition of the quiz, we present issues tackled by real-life entrepreneurs in their startup journeys.
What would you do if you were in their shoes? At the end of the quiz, you will find out what the entrepreneurs and innovators themselves actually did. Would you do things differently?
Q1: Skills for children
Children need to master a broader range of skills much quicker to keep up with a fast-changing world full of economic uncertainty. These include creativity, technology skills, and an entrepreneurial mindset. What’s another important skill that needs to be taught to school children?
Q2: Subscription-based ecommerce
Subscription-based ecommerce services offer customers a number of advantages: convenience, personalised experiences, and a steady stream of products delivered directly. What’s another attractive feature of such subscriptions?
Q3: Conversational AI
Much has been said about how conversational AI helps businesses massively improve their efficiency. What are other benefits of such technology that companies can reap?
Q4: Tailoring services
The tailoring market in many countries is fragmented and unorganised. Manual processes and word-of-mouth referrals still dominate this sector. How can technology improve the scenario here?
Q5: Demographic opportunity
Much attention has understandably focused on the youth demographic, their affinity for new media, and their willingness to experiment with new brands. However, another demographic is often overlooked – what opportunities could be tapped here, and how?
Congratulations on having come this far! But there’s more to come – answers to these five questions (below), as well as links to articles with more details on the entrepreneurs’ solutions. Happy reading, happy learning – and happy creating!
A1: Skills for children
Parichita Bansal and her husband Ruchir Bansal founded Young Wealth Creators Organisation (YWCO) as an educational programme to teach school children the value of investments. “It is also an informative way to learn about money-related matters and plan a stable means of income for old age, health care, and other types of crises,” Prachir describes.
YWCO has tied up with 30 schools so far. Read more here about how this startup generated revenue of Rs 1.2 crore in FY22, and aims to touch Rs 2.5 crore in FY23.
A2: Subscription-based ecommerce
These days, consumers can find subscriptions for various categories, such as fashion, food, pet products, books, and fitness, explains Faizan Khan, senior content marketing specialist at Ubuy. “Subscription services often include surprise elements, allowing subscribers to discover new products or brands they might not have encountered otherwise,” he adds.
“This element of surprise adds excitement and value to the subscription experience,” he says. Read more here about how automating the delivery process saves customers time and effort.
A3: Conversational AI
Automating repetitive and time-consuming tasks helps employees focus on more important tasks or customer interactions, observes Tapan Barman, Co-founder of Mihup. Operating across languages improves customer connections as well, by addressing them in their native language and dialect.
“Data is the foundation on which businesses are built, and conversational AI is ideally designed to collect information through customer interactions,” Tapan adds. Read more here about how conversational AI can improve the customer’s outlook toward the brand, increase their satisfaction, and build lasting loyalty.
A4: Tailoring services
Soumya Mohanty, Krishna Mohan Chebrolu, Birendra Sahoo, and Neha Nagendra launched the Dachier platform in 2021 to connect boutiques, tailors, and fashion designers. Consumers can avail of customised apparel digitally at affordable prices.
The Bengaluru-based startup offers services such as personalised styling, alteration, and repair services, and tailor-at-home conveniences. Read more here about its 500 onboarded merchants, with plans to scale to 10,000 merchants by the end of 2024.
A5: Demographic opportunity
Founded by Geetanshu Singla, Nehul Malhotra, and Rajat Jain in 2023, GenWise has developed an app for the older generation with timely reminders for medication, tools to socialise, and a personal digital assistant. India has a population of around 250 million between the ages of 50 and 75, constituting a fast-growing and relatively affluent demographic.
“We are excited to partner with GenWise, a platform to bridge generational gaps through a shared social platform,” says Siddharth Agarwal, Principal, Matrix Partners India, an investor in the platform. Read more here about how the platform also helps younger family members stay connected with their parents.
YourStory has also published the pocketbook ‘Proverbs and Quotes for Entrepreneurs: A World of Inspiration for Startups’ as a creative and motivational guide for innovators (downloadable as apps here: Apple, Android).