"Societies at large have realised that there is massive amount of value that is being created in entrepreneurship," said serial entrepreneur Puneet Pushkarna, General Partner of Solmark, a private equity fund formed by a group of tech entrepreneurs who have launched and built several big companies.
One of the many hats Puneet wears is that of a charter member of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE), a non-profit network with over 10,000 members across 60 chapters in 17 countries. He is also the Chairman of TiE's Singapore chapter. TiE, which recently conferred Microsoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates with a Lifetime Achievement Award, fosters global entrepreneurship through mentoring, networking and education.
"I've always believed that innovation is the key to solving the world's toughest challenges," said Gates. "Innovators need partners and supporters to make sure that their best ideas make it from the lab to the marketplace. For 27 years, TiE has been doing just that," he added.
Puneet started with Indian information technology firm HCL right out of college and moved to the United States in the 1980s to get his MBA. He then headed up HCL's US operations in the Silicon Valley before starting his own business, the first of many, in 1996.
Puneet served as the president of Headstrong, a highly specialised deep-domain business in the capital markets, before moving to Singapore in 2010. Prior to that, he was also a co-founder of TechSpan, a Goldman Sachs-backed design thinking and business solutions consulting organisation that merged with Headstrong. He was also the head of sales and business development at InfoGain, a business solutions consulting organisation.
He also sits on the boards for firms universities and B-schools such as the Board of Governors of IIM Nagpur, Industry Advisory Board of SP Jain School of Management, Singapore, the chairman of Innoveo, a Swiss Insurance Technology firm and is part of a number of philanthropic initiatives.
In this @Work interview with Connected to India's Himanshu Verma, he discusses his life, career, other responsibilities and day job as the general partner of Solmark.