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Chennai being promoted as Silicon Bay of Asia

December 26
15:33 2018

India Post News Service

SILICON VALLEY: The Silicon Valley US-based Global Tamil Entrepreneurs Network (GTEN) is organizing GTENChennai2019, a conference for Tamil entrepreneurs around the world in January in Chennai.  The conference will be held to coincide with the second edition of GIM (Global Investors Meet) by the Tamil Nadu government being held from January 23 and 24.

GTENChennai will be held on January 25.  During the meet, GTEN proposes to promote Chennai as Silicon Bay of Asia, not just India. There are about 40 fundable SaaS startups in Chennai and the State is  promoting a fintech hub too.

‚ÄúWe plan to promote Chennai in Silicon Valley by advertising in hoardings on the main arterial US101 where almost all tech behemoths are located. GTEN will also create awareness about the infrastructure available and the talent for setting up shops in Chennai through various channels. The idea to promote Chennai was proposed several years ago, but the time has come to move further‚ÄĚ, said Narasimhan Kasthurirengan, the brainchild behind the idea.

The Pinellas county in Tampa Bay of Florida was promoting the district (county) as Silicon Bay. It has even stopped promoting it and Chennai can  take advantage of it to promote it as the ideal destination for IT startups and others.

GTENChennai will bring together the world Tamil entrepreneurs, investors, industry influencers and thought leaders and innovators. GTEN will create partnerships and offer great value for learning, sharing innovations and ideas by the community. The conference will be held in Silicon Valley style.

Narasimhan Kasturirangan, co-founder of GTEN based in Silicon Valley, said the conference will be packed with keynotes, panel discussions and mentor connect sessions from among the successful community entrepreneurs. There will be a panel on cross border innovation with experts from Tamil Nadu and the US. Electric vehicles and connected auto will be focused at the meet.

There will be a pitching session by startups and networking party in a fun and informal setting. Mentor sessions will offer learning opportunities. GTEN is free for those who are attending GIM from other places. Various TiE chapters are helping to make it a  great success.  Around 500 delegates are expected to attend it. GTEN itself was formed at TiECon Silicon Valley by volunteers of TiESV.

GTENSV is being held since 2017 during TiECon Silicon Valley. The meet  provided networking opportunity for Tamil entrepreneurs from all over the world who attended TIECon every year. It was hosted by the American Tamil Entrepreneurs Association (ATEA). GTEN will be held in other countries where Tamils are living. Various universities alumni associations like BITS, IITMadras, NIT and other engineering colleges will be involved in the exercise,  said Paddu Govindaraj, one of the co-founders of GTEN. The idea of GTENChennai was discussed with the Tamil Nadu IT minister, Manikandan, last month and the industry minister, M C Sampath, recently at the GIM roadshow in Silicon Valley.

Dorai Thodla, startup evangelist in Chennai and convenor of GTENChennai, who was in the Bay Area recently said that Chennai is touted as SaaS capital of India with close to 50 startups in SaaS area. The Chennai focus will be on IT startups. But there will be sessions on connected vehicles and electric vehicles, AI and other technology areas.

The conference will be produced by the local chapter. The focus of GTEN is to connect youth, women and emerging entrepreneurs of the community in the US with India and other parts of the world for better business collaborations. GTENs will be held during TiEcons in different parts of the world and will be a regular feature, Narasimhan Kasturi said.

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