Speaking as panelists in the 10X Scale-up Business Conclave of Bombay Management Association (BMA) on 25th January 2019 SAI co-founders shared their journey from proto-typing SAI agro-forestry model in remote villages of Koraput-Rayagada belt of Odisha to scaling up in Africa. They spoke about the hurdles they faced which included mindset of not only outsiders but also the small tribal farmers, their invisibility and remoteness. The cofounders said the land where they conducted proto-typing was alien to them as they had never worked in that part of Odisha. Therefore, establishing identity, learning local language & culture, and building rapport with the community were big challenges.
Coming from modest middle class, maintain family while earning and re-investing in the Start-up was another big challenge for them. They highlighted the importance of Believe in Self; Accepting Responsibility for Mistakes; Forgiving but not Forgetting; Improving Vocabulary; and Looking for Inspiration during difficult periods as key lessons from their journey.
The 10X Scale-up Conclave is a pioneering effort by BMA to connect the entrepreneurs with a supportive eco-system of potential customers, funders and mentors. Designed for companies ranging from start-ups to SMES the conclave provides insights into the art of building successful companies with tips on navigating obstacles and challenges at every stage and capitalising on opportunities to grow. More information on Conclave is at https://bma-india.com/event/10x-scale-up-conclave/