17 November, 2017

Technophilia - 1st Prize - Why am I not happy?

Technophilia is a techno-innovation challenge at Morgan Stanley. This year, we came together and created a Robo- Venture Capitalist. The valuation of pre-revenue(startup) companies is very difficult, due to lack of publicly available financial statements and negative cashflows. The private equity investor often undervalue(Hotmail) or overvalue(Flipkart) the true value of the company, either for PE or IPO or M&A. Through this challenge, a team of 5 grads came together for a month and built a POC which gives the credit rating of a startup and its valuation with good probability. The proprietary algorithm evaluated the startups based on various parameters in these 6 categories: Leadership, Market Competition, Product Innovation, Financials, Social Media and Branding and Transparency. The app was made using R-Shiny framework

Out of 80+ ideas that were submitted to Technophilia across all locations in India, 17 got selected for implementation. All teams were provided 1 month of implementation time. The ideas were then presented to ED across Mumbai and Bangalore, out of which 6 teams made it to the finals. The final judging panel were MDs of Morgan Stanley and each team were given 5 minutes for presentation and demo and 5 minutes for audience+judge's Q&A.

Robo-Venture Capitalist secured 1st place amongst all ideas and implementation that were done this year. It was well -received by the panelist and the audience. We are planning to make the POC into a prod-like product with several inputs from IBD division.

The winners were promised an Ipad over email. So, after winning the challenge, we were all excited to receive much-awaited Ipads. But, we keep waiting for the much awaited Ipad for 1.5 months after the final event, until which we had no clue about the product. On enquiring with the organising team about the version, they answered diplomatically  that they weren't sure, but would make sure its "latest" one. Finally, after abt 2 months, we received our prizes - BUT IT WAS A HUGE DISAPPOINTMENT FOR ME.

My father asked in an excited voice - "Beta, is it 64 GB or 128 GB?". I down-counted him and replied in a low voice, shaming over the pride I had for my firm " Its 32 GB and just Wifi (no cellular connectivity)". Who calls such a thing "latest" to the "developers" who had put their blood and sweat to develop an innovative challenge POC beyond their daily work?

The management should realise that developer needs BETTER CONFIGURATION. Just spending about 5k per participant, i.e. increasing the budget by 25k, they could have provided everyone with 128 GB. Or atleast 2k*5 = 10k, it would have been upgraded to 64GB atleast.

PS: My phone has 64 GB RAM and I do run out of space on it !!

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