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BW Businessworld

Entrepreneurial Support Platform 'Founding Fuel' Launched

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Two senior journalists who founded Forbes India, Indrajit Gupta and Charles  Assisi, and former president of Pearson India’s online learning platform Tutor Vista, C.S. Swaminathan, have come together to launch a digital media and learning platform for entrepreneurs called Founding Fuel.
In a statement released after the website went live, Indrajit Gupta said: "The idea is to create a new playbook and support both ambitious entrepreneurs and individuals with an entrepreneurial mind-set build scale."
Among the range of content it will host, Founding Fuel has business strategist Rajesh Srivastava anchoring a weekly show The New Rules of Business.
Founding Fuel will source content from a network of contributors that include independent journalists, senior business leaders, and institutional knowledge partners. "We intend to generate experiential learning of the kind entrepreneurs can directly apply to their business," Assisi added.
The venture will generate revenue by providing content to other platforms too. For instance, it has signed an agreement with the business daily Mint to provide two pages of exclusive content on entrepreneurship in the newspaper every week.
The company will also create broadcast-quality content on YouTube and Daily Motion, in association with Ping Network, a firm co-founded by Govindraj Ethiraj, former editor-in-chief of Bloomberg TV India.
Ethiraj  said the joint venture hopes to combine Ping Network’s digital television production capabilities with Founding Fuel's contributor network to create high-impact television shows to cater to growing online demand from budding entrepreneurs.
To add heft to the venture, the promoters of Founding Fuel have created a high power advisory council that includes Analjit Singh, chairman, Max Group; Arun Maira, former chairman of BCG India and member, Planning Commission, D Shivakumar, chairman and CEO, PepsiCo India region, Harsh Mariwala, chairman, Marico, Kiran Karnik, former president, Nasscom, Rama Bijapurkar, well-known market strategy expert, Sanjeev Bhikhchandani, founder and vice-chairman,; and Uday Shankar, CEO, Star TV India.
"Entrepreneurship can be a lonely journey. There aren’t enough credible platforms that allow aspiring and existing entrepreneurs to interact, learn and be inspired to deal with the multiple challenges they face in scaling their enterprise. I am convinced Founding Fuel will fulfil these unmet needs," said Harsh Mariwala.
The company’s online avatar, still in beta, is being built by Achyut Nayak, a software veteran with 24 years of experience at Fortune 500 companies like FIS Global. The backbone, analytics engine that powers Founding Fuel has been created by Silicon Valley based firm Wizrocket.
In the next stage, Founding Fuel will build a mobile app, an integrated suite of digital learning solutions, events and conferences, offer mentoring services and create a curated marketplace for entrepreneurial products and services.