‘Future Build’: Turning an invention into a business success

Wednesday, 5 March 2014 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

  • Lankan Angel Network and Sri Lanka Inventors Commission and the Sri Lanka Institute of Nanotechnology jointly host workshop for inventors
Want to know what it really takes to turn an invention into a successful business? Get clued in as the pioneering Lankan Angel Network, together with its strategic partners, the Sri Lanka Inventors’ Commission and the Sri Lanka Institute of Nanotechnology, hosts the inaugural ‘Future Build’ seminar on 18 March at the BMICH. But hurry up and register at www.lankanangelnetwork.com or email info@lankanangelnetwork.com because the workshop is being limited to only 150 of the country’s best and brightest. Sponsored by Anton PVC, ‘Future Build’ will touch upon a number of topics vital to the successful start-up. And this innovative, hands on workshop will be held, first and foremost, to identify what it takes to turn an idea, or a concept, into a viable company, including giving the prospective audience a sense of what angel investors, or investors in start-up businesses, are looking for. Further, it will also familiarise attendees with multiple levels of the funding life cycle available to them, from investments for prototypes to angel funding and even the Initial Public Offering (IPO) to give them a roadmap of the typical funding issues they will encounter in the future. But, most important of all, the workshop also offers valuable, real world guidance, in the form of a mock pitch by an entrepreneur, along with a related question and answer session with potential investors, to give budding entrepreneurs and idea of what it takes to successfully sell an idea. “Anton is proud to be one of the main sponsor’s for Future Build Sri Lanka. As one of the pioneers in local industry we look forward to encouraging entrepreneurs as that is the foundation on which our founder A.Y.S Gnanam built the group,” said Jeevan Gnanam, CEO/Director, St. Anthony’s Industries Group. If any organisation knows how to help inventors take their ideas to the market, it is the Lankan Angel Network. Organisers of startup funding competition VentureEngine, the Lankan Angel Network raised Rs. 175 million for 12 startups in 2013. Eric Wikramanayake, Chairman of the Lankan Angel Network, said: “The Lankan Angel Network has seen a very strong and keen interest from angel investors and entrepreneurs alike in Sri Lanka. Unlike in the past, support for the startup ecosystem is growing rapidly in the country and there has never been a better time to start a new venture in Sri Lanka. The Lankan Angel Network offers not just funding but more importantly mentoring and support for entrepreneurs to build a successful venture. We are proud to partner with the Sri Lankan Inventors Commission and the Sri Lanka Institute of Nanotechnology to host this event.” To give the inventors of ‘Future Build’ a taste of this culture, a select group of participants from this seminar will be automatically entered into this year’s edition of Venture Engine where they will no doubt benefit from global networking and mentorship opportunities. Elaborating further, Prajeeth Balasubramaniam, Cluster Head for Discreet & Process Manufacturing, Nanotechnology and 3D Printing at the Lankan Angel Network, commented “Despite our many successes to date, the Lankan Angel Network is cognisant of the fact that we must engage all relevant stakeholders to adequately foster a Sri Lanka start-up culture, particularly considering our big picture goal of ‘empowering entrepreneurs.’ And Sri Lankan inventors are a key target group in this regard, due to the high value added revenues they could generate from the commercialisation of their inventions.” Mirroring this sentiment was Deepal Sooriyaarachchi, Commissioner of the Sri Lanka Inventors Commission, who stated: “The Sri Lanka Inventors Commission is the national body entrusted with the task of promoting innovativeness of the nation and supporting inventors by helping them commercialise their inventions. It functions under the Ministry of Technology and Research. By partnering with the Lankan Angel Network, the Sri Lanka Inventors Commission intends to facilitate the introduction of inventors to investors, and help them be better business people.” This was also reiterated by Harin De S. Wijeyeratne, the Chief Executive Officer of the Sri Lanka Institute of Nanotechnology, who noted: “The Sri Lanka Institute of Nanotechnology-Lankan Angel Network partnership provides the opportunity to unearth young science and engineering talent in the country, harnessing it to make a meaningful contribution to the national economy.”