Leila Karnik: on the Bottom Of The Pyramid in Emerging Economies and ennovent’s approach

Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you

- Oprah Winfrey

This is a quote which gets near to the league which Leila Karnik belongs to. An experienced professional, Leila has been one of the Co-founding members of the team which initiated one of India’s largest entrepreneurial communities, NEN.

Being a Network Director with ennovent!

“What I like about ennovent is, though it is still about start-ups, but at the same time, we are looking at having a real impact not only financially but at the social level as well. We are extending our support not just financially, but in many other ways. From getting the entrepreneurs advice from mentors to making sure the business scales up with a fundamentally sound business model, while making a lasting social impact.”

Leila, shares her experience with startups, saying, “with high growth startups you find good business models, but here we find, nurture and create sustainable business models for the underserved markets- the urban and rural poor in India.”

My overall career goal has been towards making a lasting impact at the social level, which has far reaching effects on people who can witness the next level of growth with access to resources that they didn’t have before.

Why India?

People are tired of just doing good, they now want to do good, with a larger vision and lasting impact. India today has a vision. People today understand the growth pattern and realise the opportunity they have around them. With diverse needs, across the length and breadth of the country, there are interesting, sustainable business models evolving.

ennovent’s USP?

We are NOT just another venture capital fund. We realise that businesses which are out there require much more than funding to make a lasting social impact. In the social sector when you also have social and environmental returns to consider, entrepreneurs have a choice. They always ask, what else do you bring to the table? We are building services to provide guidance and mentoring, a network support and crowdsourcing tools that allow entrepreneurs to solve their daily problems and scale up much faster.

Our Expectations?

In the pure profit model, VC funds are looked at as something which a venture cannot live without, and vice-versa. The VC has his/ her focus clear on generating monetary returns and the venture must deliver those. That is the high risk and high return model. We are looking at medium returns while maintaining the similar risk apetite as a normal VC fund. We understand, while we are creating business value, our enterprises are also doing social and environmental good. So that perspective has to be considered.

Why the “ennovent Global Energy Challenge”?

Energy is one of the areas of focus for ennovent. We are looking at Innovations For Sustainability, with a vision and mission to create real value for those who require it the most. The ennovent Global Energy Challenge, is a platform for reaching out to the relevant energy innovators and enterprises, all across the globe, who have disruptive and sustainable innovtions for the BoP in India.

Getting access to clean energy for the village child who wants to study at night, at an affordable rate, for him/ her to explore and rise upto new opportunities in life; this is what we are driven by!

If you need any information or want to discuss this idea further, please feel free contact me.

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