This “STARTUP” Culture Will Kill Pakistan’s Reputation Soon
Conferences, incubation centres, award ceremonies, university sponsorship, 10.8 billion speakers in Pakistan, each claiming to know entrepreneurship better than Steve Jobs, funding seminars with zero VC’s, you name it and it has been going on but 98% of Pakistani startups have only done one thing and one thing alone, they have just “Started Up” and nothing else. Nobody is producing expansion from their revenues but looking for further funding based on their previous revenues. 9 out of 10 startups are imprisoned within an incubation centre run by a person who himself has never started a single company and has taken it to a successful conclusion, either it’s run by a
Nobody is producing expansion from their revenues but looking for further funding based on their previous revenues. 9 out of 10 startups are imprisoned within an incubation centre run by a person who himself has never started a single company and has taken it to a successful conclusion, either it’s run by a bureaucrat hand picked by the CM of the province or somebody with a PhD degree in IT. A PhD degree in IT makes you qualified for entrepreneurship expertise? Are all Startups only going to deal within the IT sector? What happened to all the other fields of business that have nothing to do with IT?
We love to compete with India and we love to look up to America but we fail to learn from either because one, our ego based national pride does not allow us to learn from India and two, we are too impressed by America to ask questions from their entrepreneurial leaders because of the fear of looking stupid. We are “ONLY” concerned with starting up a business and not concerned with growing it. Incubation centres are inducting young people for 3 months and kicking them out after the 3 month period is over with a title “Graduated From…..” or “Incubated At….”.
While countries are producing “unicorns” on top of unicorns within our geographical vicinity, we have not even produced 10 companies that are worth a $100 million dollars. Why? Because we are leaving everything to chance by incubating them, holding their hands for 3 months, kicking them out into the real world and getting another batch of new companies repeating the same process. Because these incubation centres are getting funded by deep-pocketed institutions and they have nothing to lose. These incubation centres only have to exhaust that funding because without spending the previously gotten funds, they can not get more funds.
Universities are not supposed to groom entrepreneurs, universities are supposed to provide innovation and R&D for the entrepreneurs to commercialise it. But the horse is always behind the cart in Pakistan. Universities are opening up entrepreneurship centres run by “Professors” or executives of multi-nationals. Professors and multi-national executives? Neither of them have taken a single risk in entrepreneurship in their entire lives. One dispenses knowledge and the other is an employee with a cozy salary.
And the world is watching us from every country around the world. Financial centres are watching us from around the globe. They do not see a single startup being listed on the stock exchange in the past 10 years. Not a single one. Soon will come a time when the world financial centres will come to a conclusion that Pakistan has no innovation. Soon they will start to say that even Chile, a country in The Andes mountains has produced more entrepreneurial geniuses then us. And why? Because they are concentrating on producing winners and we are concentrating on just producing. We need to wake up before its too late…. And we are very close to being late. VERY.
About Mir Mohammad Ali Khan
Mir Mohammad Ali khan is an internationally renowned Investment Banker, Entrepreneur & Capital Markets Advisor. At the age of 29, he became the youngest Chairman and Founder of a full-service Investment Bank in America and the first Muslim to have owned an investment bank on Wall Street. He has had a successful career as Founder & Chairman: The Financial Group, Inc., Federal Advisor to Government of Pakistan, a Member of New Jersey Governors Council. He introduced Islamic Banking Research into mainstream America by co-sponsoring and advising Harvard University to launch Harvard Islamic Finance and Information Program (HIFIP). He also developed “THE World’s First Islamic Banking Benchmark Index on Wall Street Named:KMS-SAMI: (Socially Aware Muslim Index) which is now a functional index run by The Dow Jones Indices. He has also been featured in “Who’s Who of Top Executives In The World”. He has also been featured in “Humans Of Pakistan”.
His personal interest is to motivate the youth around the globe, especially in Pakistan, to come up with entrepreneurial technology that could determine the future of people around the world. In this regard, he has been appearing on different television programs and spreading his message through social media campaigns. He regularly speaks at universities across Pakistan and appears on television programs on the topics of motivation, personal development and capital markets. His agenda is to sow the seeds of Positivity, Optimism, Resilience and Tenacity in the youth so that they can become better people and serve the nation through personal and professional achievements of goals. Read more about him.
This extract is taken from his facebook page: