Dream and skills key to success

Tips from those who have made it big

By SUBRAT DAS in Bhubaneshwar
  • Published 28.02.16
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The ‘Fuelling SME growth in Odisha’ session on at Odisha Infocom 2016 in Bhubaneswar on Saturday. Picture by Sanjib Mukherjee

Bhubaneswar, Feb. 27: Nine years ago, engineer-turned-Indian Air Force pilot Managovinda Mishra left USA to set up a company in the state without the government and bank support. The 46-year-old entrepreneur, who had started the company with Rs 50 lakh, now employs 400 employees and expects a Rs 13 crore turnover this year.

"I am scared of approaching the government and nationalised banks for support. The banks made me run for three years asking for collateral securities, which I did not have. I am also scared of the bureaucratic labyrinths," said Mishra, while sharing his experience at the Odisha Infocom session on "SME entrepreneurial stories of Odisha" here today.

The two-day Odisha Infocom, an initiative of The Telegraph, saw the participation of over 100 government officials, 35 experts from various industries and around 400 delegates.

Mishra, the chairman-cum-managing director of the Nemhans Solutions, a cellular solution firm, said he had started his company in 2007 with just six employees. Now, he employs 410 people and has a strong presence in Gujarat, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Bihar, Northeast and Odisha. Besides providing solutions to major telecom companies, Nemhans Solution has also floated a unit named SolarSack that manufactures solar lanterns and rooftop solar power plants.

Bijoy Kumar Sahoo, founder-chairman of the city-based Sai International School, adjudged one of the best schools in India, also shared his experience of turning his passion into a profession of building a new generation.

The initiatives of Mishra and Sahoo were lauded by the experts, including the Bhubaneswar centre head of Tata Consultancy Services Manoj Kumar Panda and chief executive officer of the state-run Odisha Computer Application Centre Sanjay Kumar Singh, who described the duo as role models for budding entrepreneurs.

Taking part in the session on "Fuelling SME growth in Odisha", promoter-director of Crown Hotel and vice-president of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) Debashish Patnaik said three factors - attitude, environment and appreciation - are required for the entrepreneurship development in Odisha.

He said a successful entrepreneur was a person who had a dream, enterprise skill and risk-taking ability.

Debjit Chakraborty, technical director of the KPMG India, which has a client base of 2,700 companies in the country, said technology had emerged as a major business enabler. "The small and medium enterprises can utilise this powerful tool to their advantage," he said.

Satyabrata Mishra, assistant general manager of the SME business unit, State Bank of India, said the SMEs should take timely decisions that would help them get credit from banks and financial institutions. To compete in the market, they should have adequate knowledge about their competitors.

Idco managing director Sanjay Kumar Singh said the state government had formed a credit monitoring group to help the entrepreneurs sort out credit related problems.

Aditya Mohapatra, a senior official in the state electronics and IT department, highlighted the initiatives of the Odisha government to promote the SMEs. These included establishment of a dedicated department for the SMEs, district level facilitation centres, a single-window clearance system, a package of fiscal incentives and participation in international trade fairs.