VC Funds Favouring B2B Businesses Over B2C

Barring a couple of anomalies, none of the founders of the world’s most successful start-ups have gone on to successfully run a second consumer unicorn. Evan Williams (Blogger & Twitter) and Elon Musk (PayPal & Tesla) managed to achieve the seemingly impossible. But the other founders of PayPal have had to be satisfied with senior positions in B2B companies. Dustin Moskovitz, co-founder of Facebook, has gone on to run Asana – a success but not in the consumer space.

Clearly then, you only have one shot at running a consumer unicorn. To make the most of that shot you must have a strong team with domain expertise, a great product and a relatively stable market like any other successful startup. But you also have to have some sort of intangible, spiritual force to that propels you to the top of the wave you’re riding, crushing the competition beneath you. Only a few make it and investors today, are slowly understanding the huge risk involved in investing in these consumer technology start-ups.

“There is a trend away from consumer unicorns and valuations,” Andreas Liffgarden, Soundtrack Your Brand’s chairman and co-founder, told newswires recently. Soundtrack Your Brand is looking to raise USD 11 million to back its customized music-playlists for big companies like McDonald’s and Starbucks. According to Soundtrack Your Brand, businesses pay five times the amount consumers are willing to pay for music, thus making the business more stable and investable.

The Indian investor market is slowly but surely starting to realise this. B2B startups recorded 71 deals in from January to April of this year, up from 44 in the same period last year. There are some distinct advantages of a B2B business that investors are starting to take note of. Customer loyalty is more in a B2B business since businesses are contracted to the startup supplier through agreements for long periods of time. This means lower acquisition costs and long-lasting customer relations. In B2B commerce, companies generally tend to buy larger amounts of more expensive products thus increasing the average transactional value and therefore revenue.

Today, 59% of startups in India are in the B2C space, 37% are in the B2B space whereas the remaining 4% are a combination of B2B and B2C.The B2B numbers, however, are expected to increase as a Walmart report indicated that India’s B2B e-commerce industry will grow to $700 billion by 2020. Contrastingly, the B2C startups have suffered huge losses in the recent past. We have stories of PepperTap – hyperlocal delivery app – shutting down its operations in multiple cities; beauty start-up Amber Wellness started by former founder of Housing.com – Abhimanyu Dhamija – shutting down operations due to low margins. Grofers scaled down operations in January and is now reporting losses of 24 lakhs a day; Food Panda laid off more than 300 employees at the end of last year; Tiny Owl laid off 100 employees and shut down its operations in all cities except Mumbai.

This is why Investors are shifting focus towards Enterprise companies like Pharmarack. Pharmarack – a Pune-based start-up – provides a SaaS-based application for automated order processing and inventory management for pharma retailers and distributors. Since its inception in 2015, retailers and distributors have made transactions worth Rs 90 crore using its application. Currently 250 pharma distributors and close to 3,000 retailers use its product. Unicorn India Ventures made a decision to invest in the early stages of Pharmarack’s growth and has already seen great traction, thus giving credence to our strategy. B2B businesses are stable, grounded and comfortable predictable in their behavior and acceptance in the market. We are aware that there are less chances of a B2B business being groundbreaking but we also know that we will be able to churn out a sizeable profit if processes are followed correctly.

How A Business Coach Can Boost Your Private Practice

Have you made the decision to become a private practitioner? Good for you! Now that you’ve decided to make this leap, what steps should you take to ensure your success? There is a wealth of information available on this topic through the Internet, how-to books, and through seminars… maybe too much information! Knowing where and how to start is half the battle. A business coach can help you design a success plan for the growth of your business one logical step at a time. Read on to discover how a business coach can support and boost your private practice.

Business Coach Wisdom

There is no need to reinvent the wheel. It’s much better to soak up the wisdom of those who have gone before you! And isn’t it better to do things right the first time? Mistakes in business can be costly and frustrating. A business coach will share their ideas and know-how in ways that you can easily use to improve your practice. Much like sports, a business coach sees the big picture and the strengths and weaknesses of the players. Private practitioners may be too involved in the day-to-day details to clearly see what’s going on and what needs to happen next. When hiring a coach be sure to take the time to review the resume of the coaches under consideration and choose the one that is most likely to be aligned with your desires for the practice.

Rest Assured

It’s easy to second guess yourself and worry incessantly over every little detail of your practice. No need to get caught up in that downward spiral! A business coach will help you to identify and address your fears through encouragement and a solid action plan. You will be able to move forward with courage and strength as you build your practice and head towards fulfillment of your vision.

Branding

How do you see yourself in your practice? How will you set your practice apart from others in your field? Who is your target market? A business coach can guide you through the thought process of answering these key questions and developing your brand. By establishing a clear, unforgettable brand aimed at your target market, you will attract the right clients… those who will help your business grow and who will remain loyal to your practice.

Progress & Growth

There is more to growing your practice than just managing the business aspects. A great business coach will also help you to grow as a person, identifying areas that could be slowing down your progress, and making suggestions in a supportive and helpful way.

A truly well-rounded business coach will also be able to work with you towards building your web presence and working out your marketing approach.

It all comes down to this: You love your chosen profession and your dream is to build your practice and create financial freedom for yourself and your family. A business coach will respect your vision while guiding you towards your vision to ensure your success.

Kerry Vega, Master Success Business Coach, has a Masters Degree in Clinical Counselling. As a trainer, coach, and mentor, She will help you avoid many of the pitfalls of working in isolation and get rid of roadblocks that are holding you back. She will provide a clear structure for your next steps, be a sounding board for decisions, and help you stay accountable to your business growth.

Importance of Finding Quality Seiko Inks for ColorPainter Printers

Seiko ColorPainter Printers are the next generation printers that provide high quality prints for indoor and outdoor applications. It has a high speed printing capability that is specifically developed for high productivity markets such as signage and indoor and outdoor banner graphics. Other than that, the Seiko ink is low – odor and has mild solvents that produce stunningly rich and bold colors that last longer. These printers provide excellent functional productivity and have improved efficiency. For all your industrial printing purposes, it is however important that you find the right quality Inks.

A good quality ink should provide an attractive finish, should display physical durability and should be weather resistant. Along with that it should provide a cost efficient option and low running costs.

Here are a few reasons why it is important to find quality Seiko inks for your ColorPainter Printers:

Excellent outdoor durability

Wide format printers are generally used to print outdoor banners and other graphics. This means that they should be able to produce high quality prints that can stand the rough ‘outdoors. It should be water resistant and should not require any kind of lamination. Since these prints will be outside they should have weather resistant properties too. They should be able to endure heat, cold and all sorts of climatic conditions. The vibrant colors should not fade after a few days of exposure to the sun! High quality Seiko solvent inks will provide you with all these properties and more.

Wide color gamut

Printer inks that you select should have a wide color gamut and are perfect for large format printing. This perfectly suits the requirements of a Seiko colorpainter. The inks you select should be able to provide that sense of purity in colors that make the banner vibrant and attractive to look at. It is hence important to look for these qualities while selecting Seiko inks for your Printers.

High vividness

High vividness comes from high resolution printing. The banners should be printed with more ink coverage per inch that results in clearer and crisper final products. The printer and the ink should support that kind of printing. Look for vividness in the final prints before you select an ink for your color painters!

High density

High density colors are important for outdoor printing especially with the Color Painter Printer. They help accentuate the details in the dark areas of the graphic. They are specifically built for those who require sharp, clear and bright backlit signs.

Low levels of odor

Good quality inks are environment friendly and emit near to none odors. They are known for their low emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into indoor air. This is exactly why they are preferred for indoor applications too. They are good for artwork in workplaces and for outdoor printing too.

Low running costs

These inks are known for their low running costs. It helps improve your overall business productivity with no compromise on the quality. High volume printing with unrivaled low running costs should be an important factor that you look at while selecting inks for your color painters.

Ink refills are a good option

Finding good quality ink refills is a great option too. These days you get excellent quality refills that produce stunning prints without any compromise on quality.

These inks are virtually odorless and are plug_and_play such that they do not require any special configurations.

Overall, these inks have quick drying properties that are required by most industrial printing applications. Other than that they have excellent substrate adhesion, superior scratch resistance and have great outdoor durability without lamination. These inks are compatible with a wide range of coated and uncoated substrates including PVC, backlit films, banner, fabrics and paper.

Built for long term reliability and excellent print quality these inks are perfect for all types of fleet graphics, custom vehicle wraps, banners, signs, awnings, fabrics, and backlit films and lots more.

3 Ways to Increase the Customer Profitability of Your Small Business

Have you ever heard of the word customer profitability? Here is how Wikipedia dictionary defines it:

Customer profitability (CP) is the profit the firm makes from serving a customer or customer group over a specified period of time, specifically the difference between the revenues earned from and the costs associated with the customer relationship in a specified period.

First, review your website and ask yourself how hard are you making it for your customers to contact you? Remember, your customers have different preferences for reaching out to you.

Some prefer to phone you directly, others prefer to email you, and still others prefer some form of social media to connect with your business. Whichever way they prefer, make it easy to connect with you through various channels.

Make sure you have your phone number and email address links on each page of your website, preferably in the upper right hand corner. Don’t make your visitors hunt for your contact information by only being able to access you through your “contact us” page.

As Seth Godin, social media thought leader says, “your website visitors are like monkeys on crack.” In other words, if they don’t see a way to connect with you (the banana) when they want, they are gone.

The second strategy for you to consider is stop thinking small. In other words think about the services or products you provide and put together three basic packages:
Small
Medium
Large

Here is my point. Stop thinking like a business owner and start thinking like your clients. They have different needs and wants that come in various sizes, shapes and forms. Your job is to find out what they want, how they want it, and in which quantity, and make it available to them. Don’t wait for them to tell you what they want. Ask them.

Conduct focus groups or call them up one at a time and ask them this question, “What is one service or product you wish we provided that we do not provide at this time?” Get your cell phone recorder ready and record their responses. Then get your team together and figure what you can deliver, how to price it, and make it available ASAP.

The third strategy is to review or create a client recovery plan. What I mean by that is, do you have a way to deal with clients who experience a negative incident with your company and their disappointment with your product or service?

One way to fix this is to analyze the last five complaints you received from your clients. Addressing each complaint, one at a time, figure out what went wrong and what action you and your team can take to appease the client when it happens. What can you do to make it right? Next, figure out what needs to happen to prevent or minimize this incident from reoccurring in the future.

There you have it, three strategies to help you maximize your customer profitability.

Here is your homework. Pick one of the strategies you can implement and within the next 14 days, get your team together and do it.