‘I Am Passionate About Technology, Start-ups and Ideas’ – Sudipto Sannigrahi – Best 50 – Class of 2016

About Me

I will be joining the Venture Capital firm Matrix Partners as an early stage investor after my MBA from IIM Ahmedabad.

Previously, I have worked as a Product Manager with Flipkart and Chronus Corporation. I have also done a short investment banking stint with Credit Suisse (received a PPO) during my summers at IIM and an operations stint with ITC Limited while at IIT.

I am passionate about technology, start-ups and ideas. I have backpacked through 15+ countries in Europe & South Asia and have travelled across half of India. I love tennis and have had the pleasure of watching Roger Federer and Nadal live. I have a B.Tech. in Electronics and Electrical Communication Engineering from IIT Kharagpur where I was the institute Public Relations Chair.

What have you done at your Post-Grad/Business School/Undergrad level that makes you stand out from the crowd?

During my third year at IIT Kharagpur, I participated in Business Masters International Case Study competition organized by Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany. As part of solving the pre-case for the competition we came up with the business strategy to sell a futuristic eco-friendly battery with a higher cost price. Our pre-case was well received and we became the only Indian team to be invited for the finals. The 4 day finale in Germany, which included a full day tour of the manufacturing unit of the world’s largest chemical company BASF, taught me that great technology needs to be backed by sound business strategies to make them commercially successful.

During Business Masters, I also realised the need for creating such quality events in India as well as encouraging students to participate in more of such competitions. I came back and co-founded the Business Club of IIT Kharagpur. In my last year and a half at IIT, we expanded the club from the 3 founding members to a 40 member active team. In January 2012, we conducted our very own national level case study competition – The Indian Case Challenge. Indian Case Challenge has been conducted every year since then with participation from top colleges in the country and sponsors like ITC Limited and Jindal Saw.

When I came into IIM Ahmedabad, I similarly realised the need and created a Product Management Cell to better prepare the students for the changing job environment. I believe my ability to build something from scratch and not follow the oft trodden trajectory is something that makes me stand out from the crowd.

What have you done in your life that you are the most proud of?

At Chronus Corporation, I was promoted to become 1 of the 3 Product Managers of the company after 11 months of being a software developer. As Product Manager, I had to spear head the go to market strategy and product launch of one of the new products of the company. In the beginning while reaching to initial customers I realized the USP of the product did not resonate with the customers. Hence, I re-defined the product according to the customer needs. Implementing the changes needed another 3-4 months and at times I faced objection from the top management about the product and the timing of its launch.

However, after a number of discussions I convinced them of the utility of the suggested changes and took the responsibility for failure. We went ahead with the changes and finally launched the product after 4 months to beta customers. To fight for my product and deliver it is something that I am truly proud of. I think my overall effort was really appreciated by the firm and I am still friends with the CEO even after having left Chronus more than two years ago.

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