Build Together. Scale Together.

Hands-on operator driven conversations to help founders grow, scale & succeed
(Date to be announced soon for the 2022 edition)
Stay updated about the next edition

About Founders First

India’s largest founder conclave by India’s largest early-stage investor.
Founders First brings together the who’s who of the startup ecosystem from unicorns, marquee investors and leading operators under one roof to help founders get domain & stage-specific insights from experts in the ecosystem.
Connect, learn and grow with seasoned founders & get to know what it takes to build a successful


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Discussion points

Product driven growth
The latest trends in user experience
Lessons in building a company by first-time founders
Navigating hiring, talent and ESOP
Creating a scalable ESOP policy
Startup exits
Journey from startup to IPO
The hard truth about building a startup
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Balaji Srinivasan
Angel Investor & Entrepreneur
Anupam Mittal
Founder & CEO, People Group
K Hari
CBO, National Stock Exchange
S Ramesh
MD & CEO, Kotak Investment Banking
Tarush Bhalla
Assistant Editor LiveMint
Chandra Srikanth
Editor: Technology, Startups and New Economy MoneyControl
Shuchita Baranwal
Head of Design Gameskraft
Suhas Motwani
Founder The Product Folks
Rahul Mathur
Founder & CEO BimaPe
Anirudh Singla
Founder & CEO Pepper Content
Sidu Ponnappa
SVP Engineering, Internal Products Gojek
Sahil Bhagat
Sahil Bhagat
Kaushik Mukherjee
Co-founder & COO SUGAR Cosmetics
Vineeta Singh
Co-founder & CEO SUGAR Cosmetics
Sourabh Gupta
Founder & CEO


9:30 - 10:15 am

Opening Keynote

The power of decentralisation and India's place in the world. A free wheeling conversation with an entrepreneur, investor and futurist.

  • Balaji Srinivasan, Entrepreneur & Angel Investor & Shanti Mohan, LetsVenture (Moderator)
10:15 - 11:00 am

Product Led Growth

How do you reconfigure the marketing & sales mix to let the product lead the way? Learn how your product itself can be used as the main vehicle to drive growth.

  • Sidu Ponnappa, Gojek
  • Suhas Motwani, The Product Folks (Moderator)
11:00 - 11:45 am

Trends in UI and UX

Trends and current issues around digital products and design for Indian tech startups.

  • Ashish Toshniwal and Stephen Clements of Y Media Labs
12:15 - 12:45 pm

Campus to Company

What have been the steepest learning curves for these 1st time founders as far as company building is concerned?

  • Anirudh Singla, Pepper Content
  • Sourabh Gupta,
  • Rahul Mathur, BimaPe
  • Mrinalini Arora, LetsVenture (Moderator)
12:45 - 1:15 pm

Hiring, Talent & ESOP

The most underrated, but most important part of any business - figure out the best practices to retain talent and make ESOPs go beyond paper money

  • Siddharth Sangwan, Lightspeed
  • Hari T.N, Big Basket
  • Srikanth Iyer, HomeLane
  • Sanjay Jha,
  • Tarush Bhalla, Mint (Moderator)
1:15 - 1:45 pm

ESOP: Let's Get Practical

How do you create an ESOP policy that scales with your startup?

How much ESOP should you give out at various stages?

How should you approach ESOP liquidity & buybacks?

  • Varun Khaitan, Urban Company
  • Sanjay Jha,
2:15 - 2:45 pm

Ask Me Anything

  • Anupam Mittal, Angel Investor  Founder of
2:45 - 3:15 pm

Why I Sold My Startup

What are some of the important things to think about before selling your startup?

  • Raj Neravati, Hug Innovations
  • Shilpa Sharma, Jaypore
  • Sahil Bhagat, Vebbler
  • Syna Dehnugara, LetsVenture (Moderator)
3:15 - 3:45 pm

Road to IPO for Indian Startups

What will it take to get Indian tech startups to list in India? A 360 degree view from founders, regulators & key stakeholders

  • Prashant Tandon, 1mg
  • Hari K, NSE
  • S Ramesh, Kotak Investment Bank
  • Nimesh Kampani, LetsVenture Plus
  • Chandra Srikanth, MoneyControl (Moderator)
3:45 - 4:15 pm

Some Hard Truths

From starting up to crossing the valley of death and from fundraising to scaling - it's definitely a school of hard knocks

  • Vineeta Singh & Kaushik Mukherjee of Sugar Cosmetics

Who should attend?

Early-stage and aspiring founders building out new ventures

Founders looking to connect with operators, investors and seasoned founders

Founders keen to decode the latest trends in their domains

Why should you attend?

Engage with top investors, founders, operators across networking sessions and knowledge discussions

Understand key challenges, trends and opportunities in the startup ecosystem for founders

A glimpse into the past editions

When to take a SaaS company cross-border?
Priya Ranjan, Silicon Valley Bank

How do you sell cross-border?
Anand Jain, Clevertap

Getting to $10 M in sales
Manav Garg, Eka Software

Do’s and dont’s of community marketing
Suchita Salwan, LBB

What are the COVID-19 positive sectors?
Anjali Bansal, Avaana Capital

For sponsorship and partnership

Sonam Khurana
Head Brand & Marketing
Gurudutt Biswal
Associate Digital Marketing

Founders First

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