Building a (Mobile-Web) Start-up: the 2011 way

The era of business plans and presentations to raise money for mobile-web start-up ideas is over. In Silicon Valley, the venture incubator, Y-Combinator led by Paul Graham and his team have crushed this old school way of building an internet start-up by mentoring teams (with co-founders coming from a software engineering background) to produce a prototype and take the beta product to market. Recently, in my duties as an entrepreneur-in-residence for INSEAD Business School, I came across one MBA student who has totally got it right about building an internet start-up in the 2011 way. He actually built a prototype, tested it with users work out exact market traction with good hypotheses and did at least one product iteration similar to exactly how my co-founder, Saumil and I built Chalkboard. Here are a checklist of things which you might want to do if you want to execute the idea and not just talking about it using powerpoint slides or business plans. Continue reading Building a (Mobile-Web) Start-up: the 2011 way

Some Thoughts on Google vs China

Google has released an interesting statement today that in light of cyber security, they have decided not to censor search results on Google.CN and accept the possibility of shutting down the entire business operations if the Chinese government will not allow them to operate an unfiltered search engine. With a multi-national company of such magnitude having the possibility in moving out of China, what are the implications that one can explore in the realm of business? I will draw a couple of thoughts from history to examine this event. Continue reading Some Thoughts on Google vs China

Why and How Facebook should come to Southeast Asia

facebook Should Facebook set up an Asian HQ via establishing a presence in Southeast Asia? With recent statistics from Alexa, ComScore and O’Reilly Radar that demonstrates Facebook’s dominance as an online social networking site in the Southeast Asia market and a drip down effect into India, Cambodia and Vietnam, we provide the reasons why they should do so and the strategies how they can tackle a fragmented market like Southeast Asia. Continue reading Why and How Facebook should come to Southeast Asia

3 Reasons Why Google is launching the Chrome OS

The news is finally out: Google is to launch an operating system named as the Chrome OS (bearing the same name with the browser. As stated from the official Google blog: “The Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight operating system that will initially be targeted at netbooks…. will open-source its code, and netbooks running Google Chrome OS will be available for consumers in the second half of 2010.” Note also that the OS will run on both X86 and ARM chips and the operating system is running on top of a Linux kernel. Here are the three reasons why Google has decided to launch an operating system in the midst of a crowded space of competitors of not just Windows but Mac OS X and Linux as well (from a business perspective): Continue reading 3 Reasons Why Google is launching the Chrome OS

Facebook has almost conquered Southeast Asia and why

facebook_logoTwo months back, I broke the story regarding Facebook overtaking Friendster in Malaysia and predicted that the surrounding countries in the region will also fall after. After looking at an updated world map of leading social networks in the globe (by Vincenzo Cosenza – translator of Facebook Marketing Bible in Italian), the domino effect is continuing across the whole of Southeast Asia. Facebook has now overtaken Friendster in Southeast except Thailand and Phillipines. Note that Hi5 is still the most dominant social network in Thailand, and Phillipines remains to be the last bastion for Friendster with their recent introduction of calling cards and mobile payments. How did that really happen given that Friendster received a fresh injection of funds from IDG Ventures SEA? Continue reading Facebook has almost conquered Southeast Asia and why