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Will PTI Government Support and Promote Startups Culture in Pakistan?

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Startups are the innovative ideas of our Youth and these are launched with great expectations to succeed and transform into Enterprises or  Corporate Entities in The Long Run. Startups culture is being viral throughout the world including Pakistan. With the great success of Uber and Careem, the Youth graduates of Various Business Universities and IT Professionals pitch their Ideas and start their Entrepreneurial Journey. Pakistani Youth has great talent to be explored through devising a Youth Policy and Startup Ideas.

Funding Challenges : 

The Startups need funding to cover their maintenance and recurring costs of Webhosting, Staffing and  Marketing the Products and Services. Most of the  Entrepreneurs start their Businesses on the solo flight which results in tough challenges if they run short of funds. Unfortunately, we have limited options in Pakistan for  Venture Capital that makes the roadmap of Startups tougher and challenging. At present, we have very few Startup Funding resources which warrant that  Government should take notice of such dearth and start Venture Capital or Fund to finance the Innovative Ideas of Pakistani Entrepreneurs. Former Government had announced to Set Up Venture Capital Fund for Startups but it was not launched due to unknown reasons. The  Following List of  Venture Capitals and  Startups Incubators is very short and only available to selected high growth Startups of Pakistan.

StartUp Incubators & Venture Capital Firms in Pakistan

  1. LUMS Center for Entrepreneurship (LCE) – The Foundation Fund

    Address: LUMS Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Floor, Suleman Dawood School of Business, LUMS, DHA, Lahore, Pakistan 54792

    Phone: +92 423 5608439
    Email: lce@lums.edu.pk
    Website: https://lce.lums.edu.pk
    Twitter: http://twitter.com/lumscent

  2. Lakson Group

    The Lakson Group is one of Pakistan’s leading business conglomerates. The Lakson Group (“Lakson”) was established in 1954 and is one of the largest business groups in Pakistan. Today we manage and own companies that are industry leaders in their respective sectors including agri-business, call centres, consumer non-durables, fast food, financial services, media, paper and board, printing and packaging, surgical instruments, technology (data-networking, BPO and software) and travel.Phone:  (021) 111-525-766
    Email: info@li.com.pk
    Website: http://lakson.com.pk/

  3. Shell Tameer

    Shell LiveWIRE is a Royal Dutch Shell Social Investment Programme, which enables young people to start their own business and create employment.

    Website: https://www.shelltameer.com
    Address: Shell LiveWIRE Trust. Shell House, Karachi, Pakistan
    Phone: (021) 111 888 222
    Email: info@shelltameer.com

  4. PLAN9 TECHNOLOGY INCUBATOR

    PLAN9 Fellowship Program.

    Address: Level 09, Arfa Software Technology Park, 346 – B, Ferozepur Road, Lahore.
    Phone: +92.42.3588.0062 – ext. 1910, 1915
    Email: incubator.pitb@punjab.gov.pk
    Website: http://plan9.pitb.gov.pk

  5. Frontier Digital Ventures

    Funding to accelerate the growth of amazing online classifieds businesses

    Website: http://frontierdv.com

  6. Golden Gate Ventures

    Website: http://goldengate.vc
    Address: 73B Duxton Road Singapore 089532
    Phone: +65 6602 8050

  7. Northstar Group

    The Northstar Group is a Singapore headquartered private equity firm managing more than US$2.0 billion in committed equity capital dedicated to investing in growth companies in Indonesia and to a lesser extent, other countries in Southeast Asia.

    Website: https://www.nsgroup.com

  8. Northstar Advisors Pte. Ltd.

    Address: 6 Battery Road Unit #35-05 Singapore 049909
    Phone: +65 6533-3210
    Fax: +65 6533-3211

  9. Abraaj

    We are a global institution investing in growth markets across Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Turkey.

    Website: http://www.abraaj.com

  10. IJARA Group

    A Pakistan based Private Equity Firm, led by exemplary turnaround specialists who understand what it takes to grow businesses to the next level. IJARA is focused in supporting partner companies through their most difficult challenges.

    Address: First Floor Federation House, Abdullah Shah Ghazi Road, Block 5 Clifton, Karachi 75600 Pakistan
    Phone: +92 (21) 3582-2312
    Email: info@ijara.com.pk
    Website: https://www.ijara.com.pk/

  11. Techstars Ventures

    Techstars Ventures is the venture capital arm of Techstars

    Website: http://www.techstars.com

  12. Invest2Innovate

    Invest2Innovate supports startup communities in growth markets and has been operating in Pakistan since 2011. They have an incubation centre and they also invest in selected companies. You can find more information on their site.

    Website: http://invest2innovate.com

  13. 10xc

    10xC provides seed funding, advice and shared services to entrepreneurs working on ideas or concepts towards validation of product/market fit. Whether you’re a new startup trying to get off the ground or an existing company in need of growth capital, 10xC has the means to support you. They offer up to 1M Rupees initial investment for the sake of 20% equity and incubation to the accepted startups.

    Website: http://10xc.pk

  14. National Incubation Center

    NIC is supported by Government and Jazz with the help of Teamup. Support in raising capital from Angel investors locally and globally.

    Website: http://nicpakistan.pk
    Email: contact@nicpakistan.pk
    Phone: +92-51-844-3333 / +92-51-844-2222

  15. Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) Islamabad Chapter

    TiE runs numerous angel investment groups and funding forums throughout its network. They also host the Pakistan StartUp Cup.

    Invested in: Sukoon.
    Website: http://islamabad.tie.org

  16. WECREATE Pakistan

    Women’s Entrepreneurial Center of Resources, Education, Access, and Training for Economic Empowerment (WECREATE) Projects.

    Website: http://pakistan.wecreatecenter.com
    Address: Office #1, Select Plaza, F-11 Markaz, Islamabad
    Email: wecreatepakistan@gmail.com
    Phone: +92 51 2228969

  17. PLANX

    With a strong network of local and global investors associated with PlanX, we connect our startups with the best potential investors to help aid their growth.

    Website: http://planx.pitb.gov.pk
    Address: 2nd floor, Arfa Software Technology Park, 346-B, Ferozepur Road, Lahore
    Phone: +92-42-35880062 Ext. 1206
    Email: planx.pitb@punjab.gov.pk

  18. Planet N

    Planet N provides a platform for prime growth to start-ups through collaboration and shared services.

    Website: http://planetngroup.com
    Address: 1st Floor, Plot No. E-23, 2nd Zamzama Comm. Lane, Phase V, D.H.A., Karachi, Pakistan.
    Phone: +92 21 3537 9106 – 8
    Fax: +92 21 3581 0445

  19. National ICT R&D Fund

    This is the best place to get funding for your startups. National ICTRD provides big funds on zero equity to promote entrepreneurship. They have already Invested in More than 50 startups.

    Website: http://www.ictrdf.org.pk
    Address: 6th Floor, HBL Tower Jinnah Avenue, Blue Area, Islamabad, Pakistan
    Email: helpdesk@ictrdf.org.pk
    Phone: (+92 51) 921 5360 – (+92 51) 921 5361 – (+92 / 51) 921 5362 – (+92 / 51) 921 5363 – (+92 / 51) 921 5364

  20. Dot Zero Ventures

    Dot Zero ventures primarily invest in early-stage companies that have successfully demonstrated through pilots that their service, product or idea has mass appeal. Invested in: PerkUp, Sukoon and two others.
    Website: http://dotzeroventures.com
    Address: 14th Floor, Dilkusha Forum, Karachi
    Phone: +92 (021) 3455-6352
    Email: info@thedotzero.com

It is  imperative  that  current  PTI Government  should  set  up  Venture Capital  Fund  immediately to help improve the  Startup Culture in  Pakistan Since  the  Finance Minister Asad Omar  has  been the  active  Entrepreneur himself and remained  the  CEO of Engro Chemical limited  and  he  must be quite aware  that  There  is  a Grave  Need  to set  up  Venture Capital Fund  through SME Bank or  microfinance  Banks  0r  Commercial Banks  . The  Startups  Culture has a mushrooming growth in Pakistan with various  Innovative Ideas taking birth as real Businesses through the  Efforts of Youngpreneurs. With the  Set up of  Venture Capital Fund, The StartUps Growth will expand throughout Pakistan. It will ultimately boost the Youth Entrepreneurs  Ideas and relieve them of financial Challenges.

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Anees
4 years ago

Founded in 2014, PlanX takes in mid-stage technical school start-ups that have already got a viable product and transforms them to the next level by increasing their business and providing them access to multiple funding resources, mentors, connection with angel investors and exposure to the global market. It’s totally different from other accelerating programs as a result of it doesn’t take any equity from start-ups. YES, NO EQUITY. This is most likely as a result of the program is backed by the Punjab Information Technology Board.
https://startupsopportunity.com/job/planx-technology-startups-accelerator/

Business

10 Tips to Launch Franchise Business Successfully

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Franchising has become a popular avenue for aspiring entrepreneurs to enter the business world with a proven concept and support system. However, launching a franchise business successfully requires careful planning, strategic execution, and a strong understanding of the franchising landscape. In this article, we’ll explore ten essential tips to help you launch your franchise business on the path to success.

1. Introduction to Franchise Business

Before delving into the tips, it’s crucial to understand the concept of franchising. A franchise is a business model in which an entrepreneur (franchisee) purchases the rights to operate a business under an established company’s brand, systems, and support (franchisor). Franchising offers a balance between independence and guidance, allowing franchisees to leverage the success of a proven business model while receiving ongoing support from the franchisor.

2. Understanding Franchising

What is a franchise?

A franchise is a contractual agreement between the franchisor (the owner of the business concept) and the franchisee (the individual or entity purchasing the rights to operate the business). The franchisee pays an initial fee and ongoing royalties in exchange for the right to use the franchisor’s brand, trademarks, and operating systems.

How does franchising work?

Franchising works by replicating a successful business model across multiple locations through independent entrepreneurs. The franchisor provides the franchisee with training, support, marketing materials, and ongoing guidance to ensure consistency and brand integrity.

3. Research and Analysis

Before diving into franchising, it’s essential to conduct thorough research and analysis. This includes market research to identify potential locations, target demographics, and competitive landscape. Understanding the market demand and consumer preferences will help you choose the right franchise opportunity that aligns with your goals and interests.

4. Choosing the Right Franchise

Assessing personal interests and skills

When selecting a franchise, consider your passions, skills, and experience. Choose a business that resonates with your interests and expertise to increase your chances of long-term success and satisfaction.

Evaluating franchise opportunities

Evaluate franchise opportunities based on various factors such as brand reputation, track record, financial stability, and franchisee support. Look for franchises with a proven concept, strong brand presence, and comprehensive training and support programs.

5. Legal Considerations

Franchise agreements

Review the franchise disclosure document (FDD) and franchise agreement carefully to understand your rights, obligations, and financial commitments. Seek legal counsel to ensure you fully comprehend the terms and conditions outlined in the agreement.

Legal obligations and requirements

Comply with all legal requirements and regulations governing franchising in your jurisdiction. This includes obtaining necessary licenses and permits, adhering to labour laws, and maintaining transparency in your business operations.

6. Financial Planning

Initial investment

Determine the initial investment required to launch your franchise, including franchise fees, equipment, inventory, and marketing expenses. Develop a comprehensive business plan and budget to forecast your financial projections and ensure you have adequate funding to sustain your business until it becomes profitable.

Ongoing costs and expenses

Consider ongoing costs such as royalties, advertising fees, rent, utilities, and employee wages when calculating your expenses. Monitor your financial performance closely and make adjustments as needed to stay within budget and maximize profitability.

7. Marketing and Branding

Developing a marketing strategy

Create a marketing strategy to promote your franchise and attract customers. Utilize a mix of online and offline marketing tactics, including social media, email campaigns, local advertising, and community outreach, to build brand awareness and drive sales.

Building brand awareness

Leverage the franchisor’s brand recognition and marketing resources to establish your presence in the market. Maintain consistency in branding, messaging, and customer experience across all touchpoints to enhance brand loyalty and credibility.

8. Training and Support

Franchisor support programs

Take advantage of the training and support programs offered by the franchisor to learn the ins and outs of running the business successfully. Attend training sessions, workshops, and conferences to enhance your skills and knowledge in areas such as operations, marketing, and customer service.

Training for franchisees

Invest in training for yourself and your staff to ensure everyone is equipped with the skills and expertise required to deliver exceptional products and services. Continuous learning and development are essential for staying competitive and adapting to changing market trends.

9. Launching Your Franchise

Preparing for the grand opening

Plan a grand opening event to generate excitement and attract customers to your new franchise location. Offer special promotions, discounts, and giveaways to encourage attendance and create a memorable experience for your guests.

Implementing marketing campaigns

Execute targeted marketing campaigns leading up to the grand opening to generate buzz and drive foot traffic. Utilize social media, local advertising, and public relations tactics to reach your target audience and maximize attendance at your event.

10. Maintaining Success

Monitoring performance

Track key performance indicators (KPIs) such as sales, customer satisfaction, and employee productivity to gauge the success of your franchise. Identify areas for improvement and implement strategies to address any challenges or issues that arise.

Adapting to market changes

Stay informed about industry trends, consumer preferences, and competitive developments to adapt your business strategies accordingly. Be flexible and open to change, continuously seeking opportunities for growth and innovation to stay ahead of the curve.

Conclusion

Launching a franchise business can be a rewarding and lucrative venture when done right. By following these ten tips and investing time, effort, and resources into planning, preparation, and execution, you can increase your chances of success and achieve your entrepreneurial goals.

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Business

Unlocking Success: Top 10 Lucrative Business Ideas to Start in the UK for Booming Profits

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Introduction

In today’s dynamic business landscape, the United Kingdom offers a plethora of opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs looking to start their ventures. From innovative tech startups to traditional service-based businesses, the UK market is ripe for those with the vision and drive to succeed. In this article, we will explore the top 10 businesses to start in the UK for booming profits, providing valuable insights and analysis to help you make informed decisions and embark on a path to entrepreneurial success.

E-commerce and Online Retail:
The rise of e-commerce has revolutionized the way we shop, presenting a lucrative opportunity for entrepreneurs to tap into the growing online retail market. With the convenience of shopping from home and the potential for global reach, starting an e-commerce business in the UK can be a profitable venture.

Technology and Software Development:
The UK is known for its thriving tech scene, making it an ideal environment for tech-savvy entrepreneurs to launch innovative software solutions and technology startups. From mobile apps to SaaS platforms, there is a high demand for tech products and services in the UK market.

Health and Wellness Industry:
With a growing focus on health and wellness, businesses in this sector have seen significant growth in recent years. Starting a health and wellness business in the UK, whether it’s a fitness studio, wellness retreat, or healthy food delivery service, can be a rewarding venture with high-profit potential.

Sustainable and Eco-Friendly Businesses:
As sustainability becomes increasingly important to consumers, eco-friendly businesses are gaining traction in the UK market. From sustainable fashion brands to zero-waste stores, there is a growing demand for environmentally conscious products and services.

Food and Beverage Industry:
The food and beverage industry is a perennial favourite among entrepreneurs, offering a wide range of opportunities from restaurants and cafes to food trucks and catering services. With the diverse culinary landscape in the UK, there is ample room for creativity and innovation in this sector.

Education and E-Learning:
The education sector is ripe for disruption with the rise of e-learning platforms and online tutoring services. Entrepreneurs looking to make an impact in education can explore opportunities to create educational apps, online courses, or tutoring programs tailored to the needs of students in the UK.

Home Services and Maintenance:
With busy lifestyles becoming the norm, there is a growing demand for home services such as cleaning, gardening, and maintenance. Starting a home services business in the UK can be a profitable venture with recurring revenue streams and opportunities for expansion.

Personal Finance and Wealth Management:
As individuals seek to secure their financial futures, businesses offering personal finance advice, wealth management services, and investment opportunities are in high demand. Entrepreneurs with expertise in finance can capitalize on this growing market by providing valuable financial solutions to clients in the UK.

Event Planning and Management:
The events industry is thriving in the UK, with a constant demand for professional event planners and managers who can create memorable experiences for clients. Starting an event planning business can be a rewarding venture for those with a knack for organization and creativity.

Pet Care Services:
Pet ownership is on the rise in the UK, creating opportunities for businesses offering pet care services such as grooming, pet sitting, and dog walking. Entrepreneurs passionate about animals can turn their love for pets into a profitable business by catering to the needs of pet owners across the country.

Conclusion:
Always remember that starting a business in the UK can be a rewarding journey filled with opportunities for growth and success. By exploring these top 10 business ideas tailored to the UK market, aspiring entrepreneurs can position themselves for booming profits while making a positive impact on their customers and communities. Whether you’re drawn to e-commerce, technology, health and wellness, or any other sector mentioned above, remember that success often comes from passion, dedication, and strategic planning. Embrace your entrepreneurial spirit, take calculated risks, and embark on your path to prosperity in one of Europe’s most vibrant business landscapes – the United Kingdom.

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AI

AI in the World of Discord: Bridging Virtual Communities

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an artist s illustration of artificial intelligence ai this image depicts the process used by text to image diffusion models it was created by linus zoll as part of the visualising ai

In the vast expanse of the internet, virtual communities thrive. From gaming clans to hobbyist forums, these digital spaces connect people across geographical boundaries. At the heart of these communities lies Discord, a platform that has revolutionized online communication.

1. The Rise of Discord: A Brief Overview

Discord, founded in 2015, started as a voice chat app for gamers. However, it quickly evolved into a multifaceted platform that caters to diverse interests. With customizable servers, text channels, voice channels, and bots, Discord became the go-to hub for communities of all kinds.

2. AI-Powered Bots: Enhancing User Experience

Discord bots, powered by artificial intelligence, are pivotal in shaping the user experience. These bots automate tasks, moderate discussions, and even provide entertainment. Let’s explore some popular AI bots:

a. MEE6

MEE6 is a versatile bot that assists server administrators. It can track user activity, assign roles, and even generate custom commands. Its AI-driven moderation features keep conversations civil and respectful.

b. Dyno

Dyno is another powerful bot that automates administrative tasks. From managing invites to creating custom commands, Dyno streamlines server management. Its AI learns from user behavior, adapting its responses over time.

c. Dank Memer

Dank Memer, a humorous bot, adds a touch of levity to Discord servers. It generates memes, quizzes, and even currency systems. Its AI algorithms ensure fresh content and witty responses.

3. AI Worldbuilding: Crafting Immersive Environments

Discord servers often host role-playing games (RPGs) or collaborative storytelling. AI-driven tools aid in worldbuilding:

a. AIDungeon

AIDungeon, powered by OpenAI’s GPT models, generates dynamic narratives. Players input prompts, and the AI constructs intricate storylines. Whether exploring fantasy realms or solving mysteries, AIDungeon sparks creativity.

b. World Anvil

World Anvil assists creators in building detailed fictional worlds. From maps to character profiles, this AI-enhanced platform organizes lore and encourages collaborative storytelling.

4. Challenges and Ethical Considerations

As AI infiltrates Discord, ethical questions arise:

a. Privacy Concerns

How much data should bots collect? Striking a balance between functionality and privacy is crucial.

b. Bias and Fairness

AI algorithms can inadvertently perpetuate biases. Developers must ensure fairness and inclusivity.

c. Authenticity

Can AI-generated content truly replicate human creativity? Striving for authenticity remains a challenge.

5. Conclusion: The Future of AI-Driven Communities

Discord continues to evolve, and AI plays an integral role. As technology advances, we’ll witness even more innovative applications. Whether it’s organizing events, moderating discussions, or crafting fictional worlds, AI is shaping the very fabric of virtual communities.

So next time you join a Discord server, remember that behind the scenes, AI bots are working tirelessly to enhance your experience. The AI world and the Discord universe converge, creating a dynamic space where pixels meet possibilities.

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