Today, we can’t help but imagine the landslide of problems that are beginning to hit the start-ups as we speak. The start-up culture in Nepal has been providing a number of individuals an opportunity to test their ideas on a small scale, with non-traditional but innovative, risky but exciting short term business models, and has proven to be vibrant because of the involvement of young entrepreneurs and innovative enthusiasts, specifically in the IT sector or in the case of IT-friendly business strategies.
We assume the worst because start-ups have been known to fail due to lack of business experience, capital and research. Once lockdown is over, only the most adaptive of them will survive. But that doesn’t mean that our entrepreneurs are giving up any time soon. Everyday, we can partake in a number of webinars being hosted across the social media platforms and it is fascinating to hear how these entrepreneurs are concerned but also excited to take on the new challenges that the new normal of tomorrow has in store for them. For many of us, they will just be case studies, but for them, it is a chance to rethink new strategies to solve new problems of their societies in the unprecedented ‘new normal,’ to shape our culture in a different tune, prove their resilience, and then make some profits off it if they are able to successfully pull of this test of time. And it is truly inspiring to see that they are preparing for all of that.
The contribution of a start-up at this point in an economy may even be insignificant, but what makes them powerful is the core philosophy of this culture, which, even if on a shoe-string budget, empowers youths to think out of the box. While other businesses will push their calculators and analyze their losses before anything, start-ups will already have a business strategy in the back of their heads that will bring a refreshing and hopeful energy in the market. One might say that it may be slightly more convenient for them to bounce back, considering that these start-ups sometimes run on the entrepreneur’s or their close one’s capital, making the loss less traumatic, economically speaking.
The lockdown will be hard on them for sure. But what’s more is that they already have a list of regulatory barriers they will need to face before they even begin. There is the obvious problem of the “planning” mentality of our regulators and the plethora of regulations that they have to comply with
If we really want the start-up culture to stay as innovative and enticing as it is, the biggest relief that the government can come up with for them is to give them their freedom to enterprise back. Innovation moves much faster than government policies, so the government can simply sit back and focus on other areas like improving health and education infrastructures and let entrepreneurs and innovators do what they do best. It’s a window of opportunity, I believe, to bridge the gap between advancements of our own country with that of the rest of the world.