Sandeep is the glue at Lightbox. Having pulled together the team over the past 3 years, he’s the one responsible for keeping the machine moving as one. Sandeep moved to Mumbai in 2005 to lead Sherpalo Ventures in India. As a Partner with Sherpalo he has been a part of three Indian technology unicorns ($1 billion value companies – InfoEdge, InMobi and Shopclues). He has led Series A investments and taken operational roles such as CEO and head of Corporate Development in these companies.
A dreamer from the start, who doesn’t believe in choosing between “this or that” he did his undergrad in both business and engineering from the University of Pennsylvania. Like all good Penn grads he dove into investment banking. However, since it was the height of the dot.com boom, he did it a little differently by moving out to Palo Alto, California to join CSFB Technology Group.
Having helped tell a few stories to the public markets Sandeep decided to write his own story and teamed up with a friend to build a digital music company that was incubated by Sony Music – unfortunately, they were 10 years too early and ended up selling the company to Sony after the Internet bubble burst. After a few years of living the Bay Area dream at a start up and getting his MBA from Wharton, he moved to New York City to join InterActive Corp (IAC) – the owners of Expedia, TicketMaster, Home Shopping Network and other consumer technology businesses. While at IAC he helped launched Gifts.com and started to explore the India technology opportunity.
If you want to hear some stories of what it takes to build a consumer technology company in India, just pull up a chair and buckle up... it’s been a rocket of a ride.
What does failure mean to you?
Failure is a painful learning opportunity, without which, success would never be as sweet.
What’s your superpower?
Which is your favourite city in the world?
Welligama on the southern coast of Sri Lanka… great waves, cool beach shacks and amazing people
If you weren’t a venture capitalist, you’d be..
Experiment, fail, learn and repeat. Try things at a small scale and at a low cost, and quickly assess if they work or not and then take a call on what is worth scaling up. The experiments should either stop or continue based on consumer feedback.Read More
Entrepreneurs and investors are jointly trying to imagine and create a new world. There is no straight line to this process… it is a series of assumptions and iterations – a process of Experiment, Fail, Learn, Repeat.Read More
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Handling a downturn has little to do with what you do when the downturn starts, but more to do with how you built during the boom. At the start of a downturn, if you’re asking “What do I do now?” it’s probably too late.Read More
Sandeep Murthy talks to Abha Bakaya on Bloomberg TV about building sustainable businesses that can weather inevitable downturns in the economy. By optimising business operations and putting frugality at the heart of the company, a startup can accelerate faster during up-cycles.Read More
In this investment we are doing our small part in affecting the consumption patterns of our society. Harvard University sociobiologist Edward O. Wilson claims the earth can support 10 billion people – a number others predict may be hit by 2100.Read More
Taylor Swift demonstrates that while Spotify has 40MM users, she has a direct connection with 46.3M followers, known as the Taylor Nation. As a brand, her direct connection with people is so strong that she controls the balance of power in the distribution chain. This is a very strong statement and a real truth that all distribution businesses will quickly need to come to terms with.Read More
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Hitendra and I discovered this opportunity through an iterative set of conversations that took place prior to funding the business. It was this deep engagement and exchange of ideas, even before there was an economic incentive that allowed for a strong relationship with an open exchange of ideas to develop.Read More
It’s not the size of the Indian market but the immensity of the aspiration across income levels that businesses need to take into account. Products that deliver aspiration at value bargains is where the game gets exciting.Read More