Mark your calendar — Caravan returns in September

04 Jun 2024

Planning has begun for the annual pilgrimage to the corridor we are building between Indian and US SaaS.

In the two months since I joined SaaSBoomi, I have pleasantly learnt that everyone here is a lifelong learner. There are volunteers who run multi-million dollar companies of their own but you wouldn’t know it when they show up for community events — they have all the bright-eyed enthusiasm of a high school frontbencher.  

I first saw this in action during SaaSBoomi’s Annual event in March, this year. To me, it looked like one big fat Indian SaaS wedding. The volunteers were paying attention to tasks that may seem minor to most,  smoothing out even the smallest logistical details themselves. No hierarchies in sight, lots of buzz and laughs.

That is what convinced me to find my way into the community. It is a place where high quality insights are shared, there is a keen eye for detail, and a great bunch of people who are warm and really care about bringing everyone in the ecosystem closer. The earnestness I saw here was refreshing, and I knew I wanted to be a part of paying it forward. 

So here I am, jumping into action as one of the frontbenchers now. Our team is already deep into planning this year’s edition of Caravan. It is remarkable how, in three quick years, this curated event has captured the imagination of the community. I heard about Caravan on day one at SaaSBoomi. I haven’t stopped hearing about it. Just last week, we had more than a dozen queries on the dates for this year. 

It is safe to say Caravan has become an annual pilgrimage for SaaS founders crossing the oceans from India to the US.

Planning a pilgrimage

With interest levels being high, we are pushing to start registrations early this year so that attendees can block their calendars and book tickets as soon as possible. The excitement is building within the team too. 

I look forward to the weekly huddles where our core team of volunteers — including Vinod Muthukrishnan, Arvind Parthiban, Priya Ramachandran, Sandeep Todi, Kalyan Varma, Manisha Raisinghani and Sathya V along with Avinash Raghava — has been brainstorming the project (and also shooting the breeze). 

Our WhatsApp group comes alive every other day with ideas for potential session topics, format and speaker choices: What to keep, what to lose, what to add, what more to do. For me, it has been a bit like peeling an onion. I am learning from past editions and attendees. Having done large scale events in the US in the past, the change of working on an intimate community event is exciting. 

It is still early days but I can say there are things that will be different about Caravan’s coming edition and things that will stay the same. 

What’s on board

Let’s start with the familiar. All sessions will be held at the Draper University which by now is known and beloved by Caravan-ers for the bonhomie it inspires. Other self-booking options will be available around Draper too.

We will also continue with last year’s theme: ‘Building a strong India-US corridor.’

This Caravan will have something for everyone, whether you are an early stage or a growth stage startup. You can expect a detailed account on how to build and scale in the US, that is the central purpose of Caravan. Many of the sessions will be led by founders who’ve already walked this path and will open up their playbooks. You will not find another (un)conference that is designed for Indian founders stepping up or scaling up in the U.S.

Now, here is what will be new and improved. 

  • The five days of Caravan will be packed with sessions, keynotes, breakout discussions and workshops on how to build and scale in the US.
  • The evenings tend to be wide open so we will introduce interactive night sessions to maximise bonding time. 
  • Networking will be more fun as we put together new activities for founders to do with their peers. 
  • Not to worry, the ever-popular outdoor sports — cricket and golf — will be back in the programme.

Founders will also be hiking the trails in Pleasanton again. In fact, you will go back from Caravan with a new pair of shoes to hike the trails of the US market, a new set of 3 am buddies to navigate the corridor with. Because as part of a collective, you’re never alone.

Registrations for Caravan 2024 will open soon. Save the date and watch this space for more!

About the author

Keerthi Madhu

COO, SaaSBoomi
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