Through the Looking Glass…

Periwinkle is privy to amazing startup stories at empoWer

The past 6 weeks have been some of the most amazing I have had this year! I have been privileged to be a part of the world-class accelerator Zone Startups and that too the one-of-its-kind empoWer program for enabling women entrepreneurs in tech! To tell you the truth, nothing about this program was something even a male entrepreneur would not have gained by. What better example of a gender-agnostic approach do you need?

Ajay, Prachi, and Shreya have really executed this beautifully. If it were not for them, how would I have met such amazing personalities as Gandhali Sawant, Mark D’Souza, Rishabh Sinha, Sudeep Mitra, Ritu Soni Srivastava, Ambi Parmeswaran, Ajeet Khurana, Anmol Chaudhary, Pritesh Patel, Atibhi Mehra, Sudarshan Ravi, Ritesh Jain, Rachana Iyer, V Vaidyanathan, Adrian Andrade, Pradeep Natarajan, Paula Mariwala, Jitendra Gupta, Shreekant Pawar, Revathi Roy, Anisha Patnaik, Khintu Saud, Dr. Suresh Nair, Chandni Jafri, Avani Davda, Dominic Marcotte, Dyaneshwati Talpade, Valerie Couture, Hitesh Sachdev, Hemant Arora, Anita Pai, Madhivaran Balakrishnan, Prajakt Raut, Aditee Sarin, Sunita Singh, Tanvi Bhatt, Anu Aggarwal, and Sweta Tiwari! I know, quite a feat getting hold of such busy people, right? Kudos to team empoWer! These are all thought leaders and fighters who have gone through their own venture journey (does not necessarily mean “startup”) in an exemplary manner. Go ahead, look them up on the LinkedIn and tell me if I’m lying!

And a sincere thanks to all these wonderful guest speakers for sharing their fantastic insights and amazing journeys with us — just like it takes a village to raise a child, it takes all such beautiful minds to nurture a startup.

A special mention goes to Gandhali and her team at Microsoft for giving us a sneak peek at Azure and its support for IOT, AI, Computer Vision, various Databases, Security mechanisms, Compute-Storage-Network Services, and of course the developer-friendly tools, among other things.

Last but not the least, thanks to Microsoft and ICICI Bank for the lovely hot chocolate and masala chai at your offices! They made the power-packed days with my fellow entrepreneurs at empoWer even more special. :D