“What do you actually do?,” the five Startup Village entrepreneurs who were on a state-sponsored tour of Silicon Valley, California, posed the question to a guy they met at the Google office.
Akash Mathew, Jibin Jose, Arvind Sanjeev and Vijith Padmanabhan had no idea that they were posing that question to one of the most interesting persons to work for the technology giant, until he answered the query: “I founded Orkut”.
The man was Orkut Büyükkökten, the Turkish software engineer credited with creation of several social networking services including the Orkut, which was quite popular before the advent of Facebook.
The five young entrepreneurs shared the anecdote while speaking to media persons at a press conference here on Thursday.
The team led by Startup Village Chief Executive Officer Sijo Kuruvilla George visited Silicon Valley from December 4 to 19.
They met Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and presented their experiences before the Cabinet the other day at Thiruvananthapuram.
“The Chief Minister has promised that the government will send more entrepreneurs from the village to Silicon Valley,” said Sijo. They visited around 50 companies in the valley and met top officials of tech companies like Google, Facebook, Twitter and Whatsapp.
“We also got an opportunity to interact with Evernote, which is $1 billion company, through the visit,” said Vijith Padmanabhan, who runs the company Shoutcrow.
Akash Mathew of CIED Technologies said it felt great to learn that the heart of world’s biggest companies consists of people of Indian origin. “This was a great confidence booster and gave me the confidence that I too can achieve something,” he said.
According to Nithin George, co-founder of Qplay Tech Private Limited, the Silicon Valley visit was like saving three years as he could experience the things he had known from books and Internet.
“The people there are very receptive and are ready to accept failures. Meeting them I got the confidence that I am right,” said Arvind Sanjeev of RHL Vision Technologies.
Jibin Jose, Founder of Dotretail said that when we met the Chief Minister, he said that no companies in Startup Village shall fail due to the lack of support from the state government. “It was a great boost for all of us,” he said.