Shankar sat in the waiting area for 90 minutes past his appointment time. He watched 3 groups of people come in after him and meet with his investors before he was finally called into their office. As he walked through the door, he discovered the office was really a conference room. His 3 investors were seated seemingly random around the table. Papers and left-over food were everywhere on top of the table and he wasn’t sure where to sit. And no one offered him a seat before beginning with questions.
“Are we ready to staff up Shankar?” This came from the tall, thin businessman to his left. Shankar understood him to be the lawyer of the team.
“Yes, I think so,” Shankar responded – striving for confidence but it came out sheepish. “We have identified the skills we need to make us ready for prod…production.” Shankar noticed the businessmen already each had a copy of his five bullets; apparently forwarded to them by the receptionist while he’d been kept waiting.
“That’s excellent Shankar, but you know of course we’ve already identified the skills. We have acquiesced on meeting your demand for Ruby on Rails. But understand the development focus will be on creating new data feeds. Raj will need to start full-time to lead this team with data modeling and data mapping.” This came from the stout, well-dressed man to his right whom Shankar understood to be the brother with the third man in the room who had yet to speak.
“We think we should focus on making the code more robust, more supportable…” Shankar wasn’t allowed to finish his argument.
“The focus needs to be on enabling more data feeds.” This from the other brother who was speaking for the first time. “More market opportunities. We’re not going to be successful simply starting with the American criminal justice system. What is it you guys are always saying? Data is reusable? Well, we need to reuse it. We need to start off with as many markets as possible. Once we have some rupees flowing in, we can turn our attention to perfecting the product. Steve Jobs didn’t include copy/paste or a decent camera in his first rev iPhone. If Alibi 1.0 is successful, then we can be confident of funding Alibi 2.0.”
Shankar knew better than to challenge these men, but as there was a pause he interjected. “American crime is not a small market. Texas alone could be lucrative.”
“You don’t understand Shankar.” Again the tall lawyer. “No market based in America is smart right now. The rupee is steadily gaining value over the dollar and this will continue. We need a stable currency or we’ll be chasing our tails for profit. We have to go after AP. And AP is seriously security conscientious. That’s our target market Shankar. Now, let’s talk share dilution.”