Ajay Bam

Babson Professor William Bygrave,

Case Director Carl Hedberg, Case Writer

Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship

© Babson College, 2002.

Abstract

Ajay Bam, a recent Babson MBA graduate who also has a Masters degree in software engineering, is trying to start a mobile payments and loyalty enterprise called Vayusa. The new venture would develop a technology platform that would enable customers to carry out payments and participate in loyalty programs using any type of mobile phone. Integral to the company’s success is a partnership with an existing point-of-sale systems manufacturer, as this would be the device to which Vayusa would link its product.

Ajay has assembled a talented team that consists of industry experts and a board of advisors that includes the former CEOs of Citibank and Nynex. Nonetheless, the founding team has been unable to make much progress acquiring clients or securing commitments for a first round of venture funding. In addition, Ajay’s two founding partners have recently exited the company. Ajay is confronted with the decision of whether to cut his losses and walk away from Vayusa, or to try to make his venture successful, possibly losing more money in the process.

The case deals primarily with successful networking and resource marshalling. Other topics covered are career choice, building a team, venture capital, and board of advisors.

Location: Greater Boston

Date: 2000 to 2002

Industry: Cell phones/credit card/loyalty programs

Age of entrepreneurs: Mid-20s

Key Words: Career choice, finding and shaping an opportunity, team building, networking, bootstrapping, venture capital, and board of advisors

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Teaching Notes

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