SaaSBoomi’s biggest event since its inception had 1143 attendees (final count); dozens of speakers for keynotes and panels; 150 plus investor-startup meetings; workshops; parties (and after-parties of course); curated bonding sessions like a women-in-Saas mixer – so much happening on parallel tracks, and all of it managed by two dozen volunteers. This was simply incredible. March 17-18 in Chennai was magical.
Who are the superstars who made the SaaSBoomi Annual ‘23 tick? Here’s the who’s who and the magic they did.
Ankit Dudhwewala, Abhi Ballabh, and Anirudh Gopinath – We got hit by a tsunami of applications almost as soon as we opened registrations and these three miracle-makers filtered them all, cross-checked credentials, processed thousands of applications, and constantly interacted with those who got in and those who didn’t. Then, on the big occasion, they manned the registrations desk, ran errands, and did so many other little things that made this the Great Indian SaaS Wedding. Take Anirudh, for example, who took early risers on a heritage walk to central Chennai, at 6:15 am on Day 2. This came after a long party the previous evening, which went on to the wee hours of the morning. (What is he burning? I’d love some of that!)
Krish Subramanian and Varun Shoor took the lead sometime in late November to curate and craft the program schedule for this Annual. They began roping in other founders and the rest of the team fell in place: Ashwin Ramasamy, Ashwini Asokan, Prasanna Krishnamoorthy, Raj Sheth, Sridhar Ranganathan, Shruti Kapoor, Srikrishnan Ganesan, and Vivek Khandelwal. The team met every Sunday afternoon from December, braving Zoom fatigue to brainstorm ideas, thrash out details, and match-make the right speakers for the right sessions. Some meetings went on for three hours! They trained the speakers and went through slides and presentations to make sure that the audience got the best out of each session.
Magicians on stage
Ooh! What fun we had with Vinod Muthukrishnan on stage almost throughout the two days. He had us and the audience eating out of his hands. Maansi Sanghi compered the Awards – one of which went to Vinod for his path-breaking work building the US chapter of SaaSBoomi and paying it forward at every step.
In the founder’s shoes
How do we make the SaaSBoomi Annual experience something unforgettable for every founder in attendance? This was a question that kept our founding volunteer Avinash Raghava awake many a night. And so, this time, we got a team – Aastha Sharma, Madhumitha Mani, Vaibhav Jain, Swetha Kannan, and Ashwin Ramasamy – to think through it and get it done.
From the cute networking badges to all the posters and creatives on stage, it was Aastha Sharma and Amrutha Jalihal worked with three designers to get it all done. There were so many tweaks up till the last minute and they sailed through it all. Varun Thirumalai, our old friend, did his magic with words on social media once again. He also lent a hand to Matthew John and Dhanyal Radha Gopi who were working on some cool SaaSy short films at the event.
Show me the money!
Imagine planning, scheduling, and coordinating 150-plus meetings between startups and investors! That’s exactly what Murali Sankar did for SaaSBoomi Annual ‘23. He missed not a beat, while most of us would sweat gallons if we had to coordinate a mere handful of meetings.
Flea market with a twist
This was a new initiative we kicked off at this Annual, where a dozen plus startups picked from around 150 showcased their products for valuable, early feedback from attendees. It was an experiment we ran, and looking at the response, we are definitely going to refine it and make it a regular. The team behind this was Aditya Sanghi, Amrutha Jalihal, Arvind Parthiban, and Vartika Bansal.
Mayank Nagpal built and managed the events registrations platform. We understand there were a few glitches but he slayed the bugs as they came and kept going. Bharat Moro was right behind the console for the entire two days of sessions to make sure the video, audio, slides, and everything else worked seamlessly. Amrutha Jalihal and PC (PrajnaChandra) were hands-on with the event management agency, coordinating the humongous logistics.
These are the folks who made sure the jigsaw pieces fit, timelines met, and schedules set. Ashwin Ramasamy, and Surendran (Suren) Balachandran, please take a bow. They were part of almost every team behind the Annual.
There were so many other characters who cannot be categorized, who played unseen but vital roles in this epic. Like Arvind Parthiban, Suresh Sambamdam, Shekhar Kirani, Arvind Krishnan, and so on who were busy as bees through the two days, the evening before, the evening after …
And with that, we’re all taking a short well-earned break. But the world of SaaS never stops and we’re looking forward to lots of exciting events and initiatives ahead for our beloved community. We know we can be bigger and better.
A big thank you once again to our beloved volunteers. May your tribe grow! And with it SaaSBoomi <3