Pranav Agarwal

We recently had the privilege of interviewing Pranav Agarwal, an adept professional and Head of Capital of Foundership. As a passionate Web3 Investor, Pranav shifted his career from the corporate world to the Web3 space and is associated with building the capital arm at Foundership. In this insightful session, Pranav Agarwal shares about the shift in his career, building trust with the community, and how Foundership is different from the rest.

The Beginning

We started the session by asking, “Could you start by telling us about your career path?”

Pranav shared, “After completing my MBA, I joined one of India’s largest conglomerates, Essar with over $30 billion in revenue, as a management trainee. I worked with Essar for the next 14 years rising through the ranks and leaving as the CFO of the American metals & mining business. The majority of my experience has been in Finance, Mergers, and Acquisitions, strategy and transactions having worked on projects in 5 continents, and multiple geographies, mainly in the metals and mining industry.

My passion for the last few years has been the Web3 space (blockchain-enabled industry) as a trader, investor, and helping those around me with their projects.

In the last year or so, I have been building the capital arm at Foundership, an emerging tech accelerator and fund. I manage all things around the fund, the investments & the strategic aspects of the business.”

On Choosing A Different Path

We were curious to learn about the factors that influenced Pranav Agarwal to quit his corporate life and be an entrepreneur instead. So, we inquired, “What inspired you to quit a corporate career and join a young startup?”

Pranav passionately responded, “In almost 15 years, I had gone through the whole corporate journey rising through the ranks, working in multiple teams, multiple countries, and building or breaking multiple businesses.

Web3 is an early-stage industry and we are where the internet was in the late 90s. This industry will be the center of attention in the next decade with all types of assets and information being recorded on the blockchain.

All transactions, IDs, and ownership records, will also be migrated to blockchains and therefore I wanted to be in a place where I can play a small part in shaping this industry. Foundership was the perfect opportunity for the same.”

Unique Aspects Of Foundership

To learn how Pranav Agarwal’s firm is unique in this industry, we asked, “What’s unique about Foundership both as an accelerator and a fund?”

He shared, “Foundership is a unique high-touch model that provides Coaching, Community, and Capital to the startups it incubates. We back startups that are high potential, disruptive, and push the boundaries of the industry over the long term.

At the fund, we don’t just believe in providing capital, but also in adding value to the startups beyond that. We can help them with partnerships, users, hiring & so much more.”

Measuring Success

We further asked, “What KPIs do you use to measure your business growth?”

Pranav explained, “At Foundership, our KPIs are centered around our startups and our investors or LPs.

  • For Investors: The multiple returns generated on their investment both in terms of value realized and value returned.
  • For startups: The value created in the pre Foundership and post Foundership, our program has a fixed duration but the support never ends. We have been supporting our earliest startups for over 18 months now.”

Community At The Center

Building trust among the community is paramount for the success of a business. To understand Pranav Agarwal’s perspective on this, we asked, “How do you build trust with your community and get them to realize the value of being part of it?”

He replied, “We define our community as the focal point of individuals and businesses that are within our ecosystem. This includes coaches, founders, users, investors, partners, enablers & others who are just curious. Over the last 18 months, we have seen roles change and also multiple roles played by the same person or organization.

We build trust through careful curation of who we allow inside the community, what sort of discussions we facilitate & how we support any need from any of the members. Over time, the various initiatives, like our monthly meetup to our online events have brought the community together in a unique way.”

Change Is The Constant

Addressing the beginners, we asked, “What advice would you give to starting entrepreneurs?”

Pranav shared, “Find the right problem, make it your life mission, and don’t give up. This is the first principle of starting up. Take all the help you get, build fast & change is the only constant. Don’t believe you’re alone, whether it is capital, advice, connections, or anything else, take all the help you get. Always be open to feedback and change when your hypothesis doesn’t work out.

Raise VC capital only when you want it and only as much as you need. Being frugal with your equity & your expenses will hold a founder in good stead throughout their journey.”

Follow Pranav Agarwal on LinkedIn.

Find Foundership on LinkedIn and visit their website

Also Read

Blust-On Arrives in the UAE: Modernizing Professional Hair Care

Jason Sen: A Revolutionary Leader In The Trading Space

About Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.