What makes sense in the Microsoft – LinkedIn deal?

What makes sense in the Microsoft – LinkedIn deal?
Microsoft buys LinkedIn

Microsoft acquires LinkedIn in a $26.1 b deal

Microsoft Buys LinkedIn – The world’s largest professional Network

On late June-14-2016, the news of Microsoft buying LinkedIn for a whopping $21.6 billion came to limelight. It has always been a trend for top billion dollar companies to acquire smaller organizations and startups. But in the case of Microsoft – LinkedIn deal, it has not been mainstream. Well, we can compare this to Facebook acquiring WhatsApp a few years ago. While facebook had a strong spinal reason to acquire Whatsapp that made a huge threat to the facebook native messenger application, it was a sensible decision. Let us revisit the case of Microsoft buys LinkedIn.

So, why does a Billion dollar company like Microsoft think to buy another billion dollar company in the market? How is the acquisition going to help both the companies and its users? Was it a good bet?

Well, to answer the above questions, we might want to think the truly professional way. Microsoft under Sathya Nadella had always concentrated on the Enterprise market. The products of Microsoft that makes the major revenue share are Office 365, Windows Enterprise edition. Well, if you think of Bing, hardly people use Bing and it’s competitor Google has taken a huge market share. Few months before the release of Windows 10 for mobiles, Sathya Nadella had made it clear that the high-end phones are to represent the enterprise edition.

So, How is it a fair deal on Microsoft buys LinkedIn?

Microsoft Buys LinkedIn takenmind

Microsoft under Nadella acquires LinkedIn Professional Network

1. Fulfilling the dream of conquering the Enterprise Network:

Clearly, Microsoft wants to dominate the Enterprise market. Enterprise is real money for Microsoft. Recently, Microsoft shifted it plans to Cloud and office, apart from its major product aka Windows. Microsoft had made huge plans previously to capture the Enterprise market with Universal Windows platform, Skype for Business, Surface Pro, Sunrise calendar acquisition, Office 365 and Office Live. While Microsoft offers the pack of enterprise services, it also wants to know the right network to showcase and implement the product.Thus, the LinkedIn acquisition would greatly help Microsoft fulfill its dream on the Enterprise Network.

2. Grabbing Insights of customer’s reaction towards Microsoft products:

Unlike Google and Facebook, Microsoft lacks a network chain that helps MS evaluate the insight or reaction of consumers towards their products. LinkedIn hopefully would seal this void and hence would directly help Microsoft learn more from customers. It’s popular with Microsoft saying ‘We are Listening’.

Earlier, when windows were tested by windows insider, MS would have found it a bit difficult to get the feedback from several insiders. Despite the feedback from several million active windows insiders, it had always been a tough play to get the rest. In future, Microsoft won’t face trouble reaching people when they have the world’s professional network under their parent.

3. Pulling out competitors from the crowd:

Having LinkedIn under their belt, Microsoft now has the biggest Enterprise network. If someone brings in a new enterprise product that can rival Microsoft, even before it becomes a success Microsoft will know about it. Because now they control how the enterprise socializes. Microsoft can now target specific users and understand the pulse of Enterprise even before anyone else.

Bottom line:

If everything goes as planned by Microsoft, then the acquisition is a well-played risk. It all depends on the action of Microsoft towards LinkedIn that can make or break the huge monopoly game of the Internet giants. Microsoft buys LinkedIn. Fingers crossed, let us not underestimate the future of the Tech giants.

The future:

Microsoft had announced that after the complete acquisition, LinkedIn would function completely as an independent platform headed by Jeff Weiner – CEO of LinkedIn. Jeff would be reporting to Nadella after this deal. So, what do you think about the Microsoft – LinkedIn deal? Blow up in the comment section below.

How much should the cofounder equity be – Split the pie

How much should the cofounder equity be – Split the pie

Cofounder Equity – Learn to split the Pie

When you come up with a profitable and marketable idea, it’s high time for you as a founder to realise that ‘Two heads are better than One’. At this point of time, you search for a co-founder. If you are lucky enough to find someone of your preferred mentality, things are going to be challenging.

One of the most important Challenge is splitting the equity among the founders. This is a crucial step in your startup, and believe me, this discussion room has shut down much more startup firms than you can imagine. The discussion room must be filled with a verbal, mental and emotional conscience.

Assuming you are the founder, with a mind-blowing marketable idea. Your co-founder is going to take care of the technical aspects of developing the software you need. According to your co-founder, he’s taking up a high-end task of developing the whole software, you would need to run the business. He’s the one going to burn the midnight oil to make your business run at the initial stages. At the same time, just because you came up with a profitable idea, doesn’t mean you have a grant for 90% equity. So here comes the splitting of the pie.

Cofounder Equity : What should you think about 50/50 equity split?

A 50-50 equity split might be one of the worst decision you may take as a founder. A 50-50 equity split just signifies your low confidence level as a founder of a firm. Always remember, a technical co-founder might burn the midnight oil to prepare the software in the initial months, and you as a founder would be waiting simply for the software to get ready. So, the activities of a co-founder get bestowed as a higher one at that instant. In fact, coming down to reality, after months of preparation of the technical part, the founder’s task of marketing, user acquisition and other non-tech aspects takes a huge effort. Also, you always have the option to hire some other technical guy to complete your software.

So now, think a fast-forward of 2 years from the present. Is a 50-50 equity split reasonable?
Well, definitely not. The biggest deal now is to make the co-founder understand this with all mental, emotional and verbal conscience.

Also, it’s worth noting that your firm is expected to run for several upcoming years. Will the co-founder stay in your firm for such long time? You cannot allow a co-founder to quit the company and also carry a huge share in the firm. That’s where the vesting of equity comes into the role. The discussion of splitting the pie goes incomplete without mentioning the vesting period.

What to consider while splitting the equity ?

I would recommend you to go via a logical framework that would eventually evaluate the co-founder’s or any employee’s contribution to the success of the firm. The logical value of Input, Risk that was taken and dynamic changes in input with time should be considered in the allocation of equity.

Also, now we need another logical framework to recover the equity when a co-founder or employee leaves the company. A good framework will look into the contribution of a person as well as the nature of separation. If the contributor separates due to his/her own fault (may be failing to work for the firm) or if the firm decides to layoff some of its employees (may be due to some restraint) – At these situations, the framework should support and benefit both the company and the contributor.

Characteristics for splitting the cofounder equity:

1. The First time experience of working in a startup environment before.
2. The Achievement of the previous startup the co-founder had worked in regards to his/her contribution alone.
3. Activity of the person with regards to the firm (CTO / COO/ CMO/ other)
4. Willingness to work full time only when the firm gets funded
5. All Monetary contribution to the firm till current time.
6. An Estimate of rate per hour that can be expected for the contribution of the co-founder to the firm
7. Number of hours the co-founder spent working on this project (e.g. average number of hours worked per week x number of weeks worked)

Splitting the cofounder equity – Bottom Line

Based on the evaluation above, splitting of equity can be evaluated. Also, a co-founder equity of maximum 40% can be suggested, but remember, it’s always subject to evaluation. If you believe he could be the only person in the whole world who you crave to do this activity, you can go with 50% equity sharing.

Image Credits

Beginning with Astrophotography – Star trails!

For every photographer, capturing daylight images and grabbing every precious frame around boosts up fun. Sometimes, shooting images at night with low light turns out to be a nuisance to you rather than a sweet piece of cake. The dark sky above you at night seems to show very little notable with your naked eye. Contrastingly, there’s not just a whole world, but a whole universe of moments that can be captured by you. It may not be your naked eye, but any basic DSLR can capture the amazing dramatic photos – Welcome to Astrophotography!

Nakshatra

Astrophotograph of a cosmic bubble- Bubble Nebula

As you had just stepped into astrophotography, it grabs a great courage for me to make you understand that you don’t need a space shuttle or a million dollar cash to capture the moments in space. Shuttling thoughts and a presence of mind is far enough to start with the beginner level of Astrophotography. A beginner Astrophotographer kit basically has a DSLR body, a wide lens – preferably 18mm focal length and a tripod. As you are on a 101-course status, the most simple understanding I would expect from you is that the earth keeps rotating on its own axis – this simply implies that your subject is never stationary.

A simple, no expense astrophotograph technique is the star trail. So what is a star trail? Star trail is a technique for capturing the path traced by the stars as the earth rotates on its axes. If you start gazing at stars for longer intervals, you may seem them move across the sky. Stars traverse a circular path of a smaller radius when seen from poles rather when seen from the equator. This is simply due to the shape and size of earth. Stars similar to the sun, moves 15° westward each hour relative to earth. Tracing the path traversed by the stars lively with your camera is simply called star trail.

Now let us jump into capturing star trail with your camera!

1. Grab a wide lens – preferably 18mm focal length with a wide aperture (preferably f/3.5 or less)

2. Mount your DSLR onto a tripod and face the lens to the vast and deep sky filled with stars

3. The Manual Setting for star trail you may consider will be

Maintain an ISO of 400 that makes fairly dim stars visible and as well has no significant noise.

Maintain an aperture f/3.5 or less to enable maximum light passage to the camera.

Switch to bulb mode that enables you to capture long exposure shots greater than 30 second shutter time (a recommended ~50 mins for a good star trail).

Focus on infinity using Manual Focus and set the frame.

4. Capture the image of the deep dark star-filled sky with a shutter speed of 50 minutes by using shutter remote and allow post processing.

The trail of star you obtain resembles the below pic. The star trails are nice, curvy arcs or partial circles. The bigger the exposure time, the bigger the arc trails.

star trail

Star Trail Curves!

It’s really important for you to understand that capturing a perfect star trail is a challenging task. One significant precaution that gets neglected by most of the beginners is the light noise. While you plan your star trail, make sure you are away from all light sources that can interfere the final image. Have a torch that you can use for placing the camera setup. I suggest you try the android application – Stellarium that can help you in positioning your camera.

So Grab your camera, pick your location, shoot the trails! Got any questions? Blow up in the comments section below!

Turn your wordpress blog into Windows 10 app without coding

Turn your wordpress blog into Windows 10 app without coding

Just turn your WordPress blog into windows 10 app with no big effort!

It is the end of the year! Well, Microsoft had just surprised all the WordPress blog admins!

The Windows App Studio beta just got updated! Think not! There are happy moments made for WordPress bloggers in this Update!

According to Microsoft, you can convert your WordPress blog into Windows 10 Application. To work with the application, the users or blog admins need not code anything.

By this, WordPress blogs can be brought live to 110+ million windows 10 devices across the globe.

It is significant to mention that WordPress recently came up with their own windows app built for bloggers. This move by Microsoft now takes the viewers to windows 10 app now!

It is also quite comfortable to mention that WordPress bloggers can now turn on bing ads on their WordPress apps!

Microsoft says:

“We introduced a new WordPress data source that lets you connect your app to your WordPress blog. It pulls in content and displays it beautifully in your app so you can free your blog from the web and get it in front of 110+ million Windows 10 users by publishing it to the Store.”

Note for Students:

As Microsoft really support apps by students, it’s a great option for student bloggers to submit their windows 10 App for free on the Microsoft Windows store! Go signup with your college email or school email and enjoy your free windows store developer tools!

Ola launches independent Ola Digital Wallet – Ola Money!

Ola launches independent Ola Digital Wallet – Ola Money!

‘Ola’ – The largest taxi aggregator in India had launched its new Online wallet. OlaCabs, a product of ANI Technologies had termed its wallet currency as Ola Money. The Indian cab aggregator had followed the business model of Uber and had established a 40 million user base in India.

The Ola Money Wallet

This makes Ola Digital Wallet, the second most in the country in terms of user database. Paytm holds the first position with an online user database count of 100 million.Ola had already partnered with OYO rooms, Lenskart, Tiny owl, Zorooms, saavn, eTravelSmart, explara. Ola also claimed that ‘Ola Money’ is the next big app solely contributed to making people free from payment hassles.
Bhavvish Agarwal – CEO and Founder of Ola mentioned that more merchants would be added soon. Also, the app has its focus as seamless user experience and adding essential use cases.

Users already using OlaCabs don’t need any additional verification to signup for Ola Money. Also, Ola Money in Ola cabs app is synced with the wallet. Ola Money has its aim of provisioning utility bills across merchants online and offline. Download the App from here!

Ola Money Wallet

Digital Wallets are promising future markets. The structural and user experience will drive the future generations into Digital wallets for sure. This Space had been fragmented without a major leader yet! Some of Digital Wallets available now are Paytm, freecharge, Google wallet, Apple pay, Paypal, Citrus Pay, Square wallet, Lemon wallet, Oxygen wallet etc.. and, of course, Ola Money.

Flipkart building its Universal Windows Application

Flipkart building its Universal Windows Application

Flipkart – The highly rated e-commerce giant in India had taken up a huge step making a Universal Windows App for its platform. Following the lines of amazon, Flipkart had taken up the concept of being omnipresent on all platforms. According to the news, Flipkart would be choosing 50 candidates in order to beta test their Application.

The beta-testers would help Flipkart test out the beta Flipkart Universal Windows app, and improve the App performance by sharing Feedback and suggestions. If you are more interested in being one of the 50 candidates to beta-test Universal Flipkart app. Register here.

Should Flipkart Opt for Flipkart Universal Windows App ?

A Windows 10 Universal App works on the concept of “3 Screens 1 Cloud”. This means Flipkart App would be able to run on 10 Billion Windows devices across the globe.
It’s worth noting that Flipkart previously had put forth a concept of “App-Only Shopping”. Many Offers from Flipkart are classified “App-Only Offers”. With the Universal Windows App, Flipkart takes a huge leap on this concept. The Snapshot of Flipkart Universal Windows App beta:

Flipkart Universal Windows App

It must be noted that Flipkart had already got its app running on Android, iOS and WindowsPhone. This attempt of Flipkart makes Flipkart Universal Windows App be run on billions of Windows PC, Tablet, Windows Phone and even the recently released Microsoft Holo-lens.
Windows Central, having tried the beta app, claims the app to look intuitive, providing seamless user experience.
The App had not yet been released for public use. Flipkart had given a word that the Flipkart Universal Windows App would be available by next week.

Digital Disruption – 7 Signs it had occured

Digital Disruption – 7 Signs it had occured

A Digital disruption is said to have occured when new Technologies and new Business Model ideas take over the existing one. The Following 7 Signs Prove that Digital Disruption had occured in the past 6 years and is actively replacing the previous Business Models.

  1. World’s Largest Taxi Aggregator owns no ‘Taxis’ – UBER Technologies Inc.
  2. Uber Technologies launched in 2009 by Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp made a huge revolution in transportation sector – The Taxis. After the release of Uber App in 2012, Uber grew internationally just because of the unique app based business model.
    By late-2015, Uber was estimated to be worth $62.5 Billion.

  3. Largest Accommodation Provider Owns No Real Estate – Airbnb
  4. ‘Airbnb’ alias ‘Air Bed and Breakfast’ is a platform for people to list, find and rent accomodation and lodging. Founded in 2007, Airbnb created a huge impact on real estate industry with 1.5 million listings all over the world. Airbnb works on commission model.It is now the largest Accomodation Provider known.

  5. Largest Telecommunication Companies owns no Telco Infra – Skype Telecommunications :
  6. Skype was founded in 2003 and got acquired by Microsoft in 2011. Skype allowed users to exchange text and video messages, files and images, as well as create conference calls. The Carrier companies lost a potential market on International calls after the intervention of Skype. The Technology that made international Communication much cheaper promoted a digital disruption.

  7. World’s Most Valuable Retailer Owns No Inventory – Alibaba Group Holding Limited:
  8. Alibaba – The Chinese E-Commerce giant provides B2B,B2C and C2C sales service via web portals. It was founded in 1999 and had a rapid expansion in past few years. Owning a Business Capital of whooping $145 billion dollars, Alibaba group stands out with varied chain of services. It includes its own mapping services,own payment system – Alipay, own Cloud Computing platform – yet owning no inventories.

  9. Most Popular Media owner owns no content – Facebook Inc.
  10. Facebook founded by Zuckerburg in 2004 showed the world a rapid social sharing platform. Killing its then known competitor Orkut by introducing the ‘news feeds’ feature, Facebook topped the social media platform. Today facebook has become a part of life among millions of people.

  11. Fastest growing banks owns no actual money – Society One.
  12. Society One – The online peer-to-peer lending Business model made investing or borrowing Personal Loans much simpler. Launched in 2012, Society One had created a huge disruption with its unique financial solution for unsecured personal loans. The key characteristics of peer-to-peer lending Model was that loans were unsecured and are not protected by government insurance.

  13. World’s Largest Movie Streaming service owns no cinemas – Netflix Inc.
  14. Started in 1997 by Marc Randolph – By 2009, Netflix was offering a collection of 100,000 titles on DVD and had surpassed 10 million subscribers.In October 2015, Netflix reported 69.17 million subscribers across the globe,out of which 43 million users were from United States.