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Meet Dr Gopi Nallaiyan Who Quit His Corporate Job To Help Children Fight Congenital Heart Disease

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Gopi Nallaiyan, Hema Nathesan, Gopi Nallaiyan Hema Nathesan, cardiothoracic surgery, congenital heart defects, congenital heart disease, disease,healthcare, healthcare centres, heart disease, hemapriya natesan, little moppet heart foundation, medicine, paediatric heart surgeon, social issues, surgery, surgical treatment, tamil nadu, indian, startup stories, founders, entrepreneurs, innovators, stories, insights, investors, funding, acquisition

Dr. Gopi Nallaiyan and his wife Dr. Hema Nathesan are one of those few couples who took an odd decision of quitting their corporate jobs and decided to serve children suffering from congenital heart disease (CHD).

Having access to good medical services and health care is a costly affair in India. Even though there are government hospitals available which provide affordable treatment services, there are nearly 78,000 infants in India who die every year due to CHD.

Due to lack of awareness about this disorder and high costs involved in the surgeries, families belonging to lower economic strata often find it difficult to get treated on time resulting in early child deaths.

After witnessing these helpless children, Dr.Gopi decided to do something for them. It was then with the help of his wife Dr. Hema Nathesan, he set up the Little Moppet Heart Foundation which aims to provide financial and medical support to every child who is suffering from CHD.

“Reaching out to the children from the lower economic strata who need treatment for CHD is quite vital because their families are daily wage laborers who can hardly afford for their daily full meal.” says 36-year-old Dr. Gopi.

Most of the rural health facilities are well equipped to handle outpatient cases and also conduct minor surgeries. But most of the families will not afford to lose their working days in search of free treatment and a medical specialist. Hence the child’s fate of inevitable passing away is accepted.

It all started in 2015 when Dr. Gopi met a six year girl who was diagnosed with CHD. Though the child’s parents learned about her disease when she was a six months baby, they couldn’t do anything and by the time they approached Dr. Gopi, her chances of survival were negligible.

After going through many incidents like these, the doctor couple decided to start the Little Moppet Heart Foundation.

Located in Tamil Nadu, this foundation has screened approximately 4,200 students through the government school health screening system and have touched the lives of 800 children within a span of just five months.

This couple wishes to help families across India and also aims to work in the states which have an underdeveloped healthcare system. “Our vision is to not only take The Little Moppet Foundation camps to all these rural areas, but we also envision a robust referral system where the parents are helped in every step till their child gets the right treatment at the right time,” says Dr. Gopi Nallaiyan.

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How To Say No At Work Politely

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We live in a time where good work is rewarded with more work. Not appreciation, but with more burden and an increase in shift timings. When this happens, we often tend to lose sight of the bigger picture and forget to say no when it’s necessary. To make your work life a little easier, we give you 5 tips to help you say no politely at work!

1. Negotiate your way out a sure fire way of yes! 

“Are you okay to do this meeting for me?” “Can you finish this task for me?” “Could you please get in touch with that annoying client? I just can’t.” Are these some of the questions you find yourself saying yes to even if you don’t have the time to? Then it’s time to stop, evaluate and figure out what is the most important task at hand. Even you can’t say no directly, negotiate your way around the yes to a maybe. Try saying things like “I could but maybe you could finish this report I’m working on.” This way, you can get your work done AND help the other person!

2. Honesty is the best policy! 

Being honest really does go a long way in earning brownie points at work! Make your reason for saying no in a clear manner. Be direct, straight and to the point, without adding a lot of drama to the story. If you are a nervous talker, then it would help if you wrote down the points before hand and rehearsed it to yourself. This way, you are prepared and ready for the task ahead!

3. It does not accomplish your goal 

When you take on more than you can accomplish at one time, the end goal is extremely ineffective. Not only does your work get affected, but the extra work you take on doesn’t get the desired result either. When you receive a proposal that may be a distraction, the best thing to do is hear it out fully and then directly and politely explain why it’s not a fit for you and possibly even for you at this particular time.

4. Take time to consider the project

Determine how much time is needed for the project. Then look at how much work you have on your plate. Evaluating the two will help on giving you an idea of what task is more important thereby helping you. While this may sound a little selfish, it is extremely important to look at how advantageous the extra task is for you as an employee. Weigh the pros and cons and only then say yes if you truly think it is going to be effective.

5. End the conversation with confidence 

After you’ve done the hard work of saying “no” to something, make sure you end the conversation in a way that doesn’t leave room for further prodding. For example, after you end the conversation, you could sign off by saying something like “Thank you for understanding!” This way, your colleagues and your employers know that you only say yes when they really count and don’t say it for anything and everything!

Follow these five simple steps and help create a successful and friendly environment for yourself and your colleagues at work. Make work not just a strategically growing place but also a fun place to be at!

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The Biggest Achievements, Failures And Controversies Of 2017

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2017. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. The Indian startup ecosystem grew to become one of the biggest ecosystems of the world. Major international venture capital firms invested skyrocketing capital in multiple startup firms. Many new startups were acquired, some acquisitions failed at the finish line. But, overall, it was a very eventful year for startups in India. In no particular order, let’s take a look at some of the biggest startup moments of 2017.

Flipkart – Snapdeal Acquisition
One of the most talked about mergers that continued for more than 6 months, ecommerce giant Flipkart’s acquisition of Snapdeal would have marked the dawn of a new ecommerce era. With SoftBank’s interest in investing in Flipkart, this was supposed to be one of the biggest deals in the ecommerce ecosystem. But, minority investors such as Wipro founder Azim Premji’s investment arm PremjiInvest and others opposed the acquisition due to various issues. Ultimately, despite multiple attempts, the Flipkart and Snapdeal acquisition was called off.

Axis Bank Acquires Digital Payments Startup FreeCharge
Axis Bank, one of the biggest lending firms in India, acquired Snapdeal owned digital payments platform FreeCharge in the middle the Flipkart and Snapdeal merger talks. Launched in 2010, FreeCharge competes against other digital wallets like Paytm and Mobikwik. In accordance with the deal, Axis Bank got access to about 50 million FreeCharge consumers and the 200 member FreeCharge team joined Axis Bank.

Zomato Acquires Runnr
Zomato, India’s leading restaurant discovery and food delivery firm acquired Runnr for about $ 20 million. This acquisition helped Zomato shore up its food delivery business, amid intense competition from rapidly growing rivals such as Swiggy. The deal also gave Runnr a second life which was struggling to raise funds facing tough competition from other food delivery startups like Swiggy and Foodpanda.

Ola Acquires Foodpanda
It clearly was a year for acquisitions in the food tech industry. After the launch of UberEATS, the global taxi hailing firm Uber’s food delivery arm, the homegrown taxi hailing startup Ola acquired the online food ordering and delivery startup, Foodpanda to enter the foodtech industry. Ola invested $ 200 million in the company while Foodpanda’s parent company Delivery Hero received a percentage of Ola’s stock. It will be interesting to see how this new partnership will benefit both the companies and how it will affect Swiggy and Zomato’s domination of the food delivery industry in the coming year. 

While 2017 was a great year for a few startups, not many were so lucky. Here is a list of those startups who have seen better days.

Stayzilla, homestay platform was shut down and the founder was arrested
Early this year, one of the biggest online homestay networks shut down its operations. Over a period of seven years, Stayzilla offered more than 55000 stay options across 4000 towns in India catering to both travelers as well as homeowners who are looking for unique and differentiated stay experiences. A month after the company closed up shop, its founder Yogendra Vasupal was arrested and sent to jail by the Chennai Police Commissioner after a case was filed against him by Jigsaw Advertising, accusing him of fraud. In a dramatic plot twist, Stayzilla’s co founder Sachit Singh received a box from an anonymous source containing a voodoo doll and his son’s photo inside. The package had an added message that said, “The most special way to say you care.” Not the best way to start the year. 30 days later Vasupal was granted bail by the Madras High Court and the HC Judge termed this case as “purely a dispute between two businessmen” while granting bail.

The Snapdeal Fallout
Following a failed merger and the exit of its largest investor SoftBank, which went ahead and invested in Snapdeal’s biggest rival Flipkart, to say 2017 was a bad year for this ecommerce firm would be an understatement. In addition to investment problems, the company also faced multiple expensive legal battles with Paytm Mall and GoJavas. While Axis Bank’s acquisition of FreeCharge gave the company some breathing room, Snapdeal still had to let go of most of its employees. However, the ecommerce firm is still fighting and is focused on its growth path towards building Snapdeal 2.0.

Karnataka, Kerala, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh join the Startup India Initiative

The Indian Government refused to be left behind in this Indian startup frenzy. In an attempt to help more such startups grow, both Central and State Governments launched multiple programmes, schemes and initiatives. Here are the programmes launched by the various governments in 2017. In line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Startup India Initiative, the State Governments of Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Karnataka, Telangana and Uttar Pradesh launched several initiatives to boost startups.

The Uttar Pradesh Government established the biggest incubator in India to provide assistance and funding to new businesses and startups. Chief Minister of UP, set up a Rs. 1000 crores startup fund to encourage startup schemes in the State.

Similarly, the Kerala Government allotted 12 new projects under the State Poverty Eradication Mission’s Kudumbashree program. These projects were a part of the Startup Village Entrepreneurship Program (SVEP) set up by the Union Ministry for Rural Development.

Never one to be left behind, the Karnataka Government also launched the “Elevate Program” to identify 100 of the most innovative startups in Karnataka. The selected startups received funding and mentorship to turn their ideas into successful businesses. The Government also invested close to Rs. 40 crores in the construction of a state of the art artificial intelligence (AI) and data science capabilities center in collaboration with NASSCOM. Named as the Centre of Excellence for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence, the tech hub aims to accelerate the development of artificial intelligence and data science related technologies.

The Hyderabad based startup engine T Hub also launched the Smart City/Smart Building NanoAccelerate Programme in association with United Technologies Corporation (UTC.) Five startups were selected under this program and were given an opportunity to collaborate with UTC, prioritize their solution and develop a proof of concept (POC) on the prioritized solution.

The Andhra Pradesh Government not only launched the one of its kind Blockchain Business Conference in Vizag but also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the US based company, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT.) HTT, under the agreement, will introduce the futuristic “Hyperloop” transportation system in the State Capital region, Amravati. Further, Google’s parent company Alphabet Inc., has also made an agreement with the AP Government to sell their newly developed technology in order to provide internet for millions of people without laying any cables. 2,000 boxes will be installed as far as 20 kilometers apart, on posts and rooftops to bring fast internet to connect populated areas, using laser beaming boxes which rely on Free Space Optical Communications (FSOC) tech.

2017 was a roller coaster ride filled with highs, lows and loopholes. We hope 2018 will bring more good news, greater technology and inspiring innovations that will make this world a happier and easier place to live in. Startup Stories wishes all of its readers a very happy and prosperous New Year 2018!

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Top Five Inventions Through The Ages!

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It’s Christmas! We, at Startup Stories, would like to wish all you readers a very happy and Merry Christmas. Since Christmas is the time of giving, spreading joy and love, let’s take a look at some of the inventions that have helped humans through the ages, making the world an easier and better place to live.

1. Electricity and the light bulb
Any inventions list will be incomplete without electricity and the light bulb. Where would humans be if we did not have electricity to power our day to day lives? The electric light bulb invented by Thomas Alva Edison is, to this day, considered to be one of the most important inventions, paving the path for many other inventions and discoveries. On the other hand, while Benjamin Franklin is given credit for discovering electricity, electricity became a reality due to the contributions of various scientists over a period of time.

2. Printing Press
The printing press was invented by Johannes Gutenberg in the 15 century. Gutenberg’s printing press reduced the cost of printing books and other documents thereby allowing for books to be printed even in lesser numbers. By the 16th century, the output rose tenfold to an estimated 150 to 200 million copies. The arrival of mechanical movable type printing introduced the era of mass communication and resulted in a sharp increase in literacy. Today, practically every alternate house has a printer.
 
3. Computers
Computers, like electricity, have now become a part and parcel of our daily life. These electronic devices that could initially only manipulate, store, retrieve or process data are now used for basically everything in life. Next generation computers can process all forms of data, prioritize information, suggest solutions, learn habits over time and come with personalized digital assistants. Charles Babbage is hugely credited with this invention.

4. Internet
One of the most important inventions, at least for the millennials, is the Internet brought about a huge change in the way the world communicated with each other. Initially designed to be used by the American military, the Internet has now taken over the majority of the industries, digitizing the entire world. Now, new industries like the startup ecosystem are on a rise due to easy access to the internet and its ability to connect the world.

5. Smartphones
Where do we even begin with smartphones? Since 2007, when the first iPhone hit the markets, smartphones have only made life super easy. Right from scheduling appointments to carrying a digital assistant in your pocket and creating augmented realities in your backyard, the smartphones of now can do it all.

This is our list of inventions that have made our life a piece of cake. If you feel we missed out on any amazing inventions, discoveries and innovations, let us know in the comments below. If you are creating the next big thing, write to us at [email protected].

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