Warren Barkley: There is a district in Washington State who have way less money than most districts. They’ve a lot of kids who are in and out of school, but every kid has a laptop in its population of 20,000. The curriculum is online for pretty much everything that they want to learn in the K-8. So if the kids miss a class because something happened with their parents, they can catch up. The way the superintendent did it there is through community. He has kids who do PR almost. They’ve parents who are massively involved. This is a district where you would not expect this type of thing to happen if you look at the demographics, yet they’re wildly successful with their technology and with their ability to affect the learning outcomes with kids.
When you talk to the superintendent, he will say that it’s all about the community. How is the community involved? I’ve seen this in other places as well and the recipe of success is community involvement. You can get to an effective use of these >>>
Sramana Mitra: That was what I was trying to extract. One of the things that is always very compelling is if you can solve a serious enterprise problem for people who have a lot of money and for whom you can end up saving a lot of money. That’s the reason why I took you through these questions. How long did it take you to build that product and start selling?
Terry Ryan: It took us about a year and a half to get our first product to market and sell it to the first customer.
Sramana Mitra: In that time, did you have a customer already in the process who were giving you input? >>>
According to eMarketer, the number of mobile Internet users in China is expected to grow 28% annually to 712.4 million over the period 2013 through 2017 . Researcher Analysys expects the mobile game market in China to grow 40% annually from $2.3 billion in 2013 to $8.7 billion in 2017. They also estimate that the mobile marketing market in the country will grow 70% annually from $2.2 billion in 2013 to $18.3 billion in 2017. No wonder Chinese mobile app makers are seeing a strong growth.
Sramana Mitra: From the time that you launched to getting to your first customers who were selling their properties on your platform, what was the time window? How long did it take you to get your first transaction?
Robert Reffkin: The first transaction was in the first month. It was a rental. We had more demands to see homes. We had to hire aggressively in order to meet the demands of all the clients who wanted to see homes.
Sramana Mitra: How did the agent ramp happen? How many agents did you start with? How did you scale that agent process? It seems like that’s one of the key scaling pieces.
Robert Reffkin: We started with just 20 agents. Now we have 100. We definitely have to grow quickly.
By Guest Author Soren Petersen
Identifying and attracting potential startup firms has so far been a game of chance, with far too much money chasing far too few opportunities. Those most experienced at this game are leading Silicon Valley Venture Capital firms (VC firms). Studies at Harvard University show that entrepreneurs receiving financing from VC firms have only an eighteen percent chance of success. However, a learning curve does take place and if those same entrepreneurs succeed and obtain VC backing for a second startup, they now have a thirty percent success rate. >>>
In an effort to continue supporting the energy and enthusiasm of entrepreneurs involved with SmartCamp in India, IBM is partnering with the One Million by One Million (1M/1M) global virtual incubator to help entrepreneurs get high quality mentoring and other kinds of support.
As a follow-up to SmartCamp, IBM is offering a 25% discount to the $1000 a year 1M/1M program. Here’s an ROI analysis of the program.
Please take a look at the 1M/1M web site to understand the program in more detail, as well as attend the weekly mentoring roundtables, where you will have a chance to speak with Sramana Mitra, 1M/1M’s founder, directly.
If you are interested in taking advantage of this special membership discount, please contact Irina Patterson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sramana Mitra: That sounds terrible. The example you gave is shocking.
Warren Barkley: That was probably one of the worst examples. I’ve seen scenarios where kids aren’t allowed on the network, so they have apps downloaded for them. They can work on some applications, but then there’s no learning artifact out of it. The devices can’t just be fancy game-playing machines. You’ve to have output in the form of a digital artifact that kids can carry along and see the learning. In a lot of places, the best thing I’ve heard around this is that our classrooms are authentically reflecting the reality of the society that our kids live in >>>
Sramana Mitra: Healthcare IT has been a very active field in terms of startups and innovation in the last 10 years, maybe. What was the next level? As you double-clicked down on healthcare, what are the other sets of choices? What was the next level of process to determine where in healthcare you were going to focus?
Terry Ryan: That’s a really good question. We reminded ourselves that all the good things we’ve spent the last decade doing in the data space were all concentrated around the biggest, hairiest, and most complex types of data that you want to throw out. We were, at times, known as the consultant’s consultant. We pulled back and said, “If we’re really going to continue that experience, where in healthcare are we dealing with enormous concentrations of data? Where in healthcare are we dealing with complex data?” Once we studied that a bit, we decided to get down to the claim level. >>>