Start-ups: Brave New Ideas in a Changing World (2/3)

7 December 2011 by Jinesh Parekh No comments

In our previous story we saw how the current climate of economic uncertainty is crimping entrepreneurial activity in the U.S. in terms of availability of funding – but people are still innovating and coming up with fresh, new ideas to keep the engine of economy churning.

Last month, Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank President Dennis Lockhart lamented, in a speech, that job creation in the U.S. was suffering, partly due to the decline in new business formation.

“The start-up sector is important, and it is spluttering,” he said. “We need more activity in this area of the economy.”

There may be fewer start-ups coming up than previously but the ones who are getting off the ground are those with courage and the thinking necessary to survive in the temperamental world that we now inhabit.

“From my point of view, working with start-ups, I find them much more open to new ideas and methods of business development that does not require the resources that we’ve known a decade ago, says Nati Katz of NK Worldwide.

There are more start-ups with five individuals working from a garage or even a cafe with their laptops, says Logtel’s Bensimon. There is a pervading spirit of `trying ‘out’ new areas by those who have lost jobs due to downsizing or bankruptcy filings.

“NOTHING TO LOSE AND EVERYTHING TO GAIN”

The spreading gloom notwithstanding, across the globe, the risk appetite for launching new ventures is still great.

“There is a sense of `nothing to lose and everything to gain,” says Nati Katz. “It’s not just a cynical saying that stems from being unemployed or underemployed – but a practical opportunity.”

Having lived with the downturn since 2008, people have got used to the idea that there will not be an immediate change in the job markets. So there is a hungry quest for new opportunities to make money and explore new markets.

“New business areas now include mobile technology, social networking, new marketing and advertising platforms..”, says Katz.

Using the internet as a platform for delivery of services and products has made doing business easier and not as challenging as before.

Yossi Polnauer, the chief of Leibish & Co – which holds the largest online inventory of fancy, coloured diamonds – says, “In the past few years we have shifted the weight of our activity towards the online arena. From our point of view, start-ups rely greatly on internet-based services and platforms to run the day-to-day business tasks.”

Jinesh Parekh

Founder CEO, Idyllic.

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