Monday, August 19, 2013

Entrevista with Ratish Nair, Founding-CEO of Interactive Avenues

Interview with Ratish Nair, Founding-CEO of Interactive Avenues (IA), the Mumbai-headquartered, Sequoia Capital India-backed digital marketing agency which was acquired in March 2013 by US- and Europe-based ad agency Interpublic. Interview focuses on the company's founding (5 co-founders who earlier worked at another digital agency Mediaturf); Angel Funding (from Anupam Mittal of; VC Funding and relationship with Sequoia Capital; and, of course, the Exit (how IA ran the process, the role of the VC, the role of the intermediary, internal dynamics, etc.).

The interviewer is fellow entrepreneur Chandu Nair. Chandu earlier founded, successfully raised venture capital for and exited from Scope eKnowledge, one of the earliest KPO firms in India.

The Audio (podcast) version can be downloaded from here 

Other Highlights

Synergistic Co-founding team

How, having worked together in the past (at Mediaturf which they left as a group to found IA), the co-founding team knew each other' strengths and weaknesses and were able to hence work in a synergistic manner.

Leveraging the Brand & Network of VC Investor

How IA tapped Sequoia Capital not just for the money, but also to add to the startup venture's credibility (when pitching for clients) and also for generating business from the investor's other portfolio companies.

Advertising as a way out of small town

Interesting vignettes about a small "mining town" upbringing and how advertising was seen as an escape to the exciting world of the "big city".

Also how the lectures by Prof. Subroto Sengupta at IIM-Calcutta served as an inspiration to join the world of advertising

Advise to other Entrepreneurs

"Never raise more money than what you need - else, you might relax and 'miss the bus'."