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Future Startup Weekly 43: Strategic realignment

Entrepreneurship, Technology, and Society | 31 July 2022 | No. 43

Hi there: I'm Ruhul. I convene Future Startup Weekly to help you understand entrepreneurship and the technology landscape in Bangladesh and beyond. If you enjoy this, feel free to share it with other good people.

I. HungryNaki’s strategic realignment, and the business of online food delivery in Bangladesh

There are several available explanations for HungryNaki’s move. One straightforward argument puts that the business is not going well and that you can’t always buy growth with money. The argument subtly implies that the company is unlikely to recover. Plausible enough. Certainly business is not going well. That part is given. But scaling down does not always imply a strategic misstep. Rather a strategic realignment. Done right, scaling down can allow a business more room for breathing and recalibration. Read

II. Iterative picks Bangladeshi startups Barikoi and Thrive EdTech in its latest cohort, Iterative’s ambition

Two Bangladeshi startups, Barikoi and Thrive EdTech, have made it to the latest cohort of Singapore-based Southeast Asia-focused accelerator program Iterative. Iterative runs a Y Combinator-style accelerator program. It operates two cohorts per year and invests between $150K to $500K in each startup upon admission. Previously, Iterative backed two Bangladeshi startups: GoZayaan and Kludio. Read

III. GoZayaan uses relentless innovation and convenience to make travel accessible

With an ambition to make travel accessible to all, GoZayaan has been investing consistently in innovations. Online travel remains in its early days in Bangladesh. People are still learning about the benefits and perks of online travel services. Several estimates suggest online travel has some 5% penetration of the entire travel market in the country. To that end, building awareness about the online travel market remains critical for the digital travel industry in Bangladesh. Read

IV. Green Grocery grows up, experiences strong demand

Safe food startup Green Grocery has been on a roll. Founded in 2020, the startup has launched multiple new products and expanded distribution channels over the last two years. Today, it offers a fascinating set of products and services in the safe food space. Read

V. Gazi Raffan: The origin of BanglaMeds, entrepreneurship, and what precedes success (Part II)

Gazi Raffan is the founder and CEO of BanglaMeds, a fully owned subsidiary of Chaldal. Founded in 2017, BanglaMeds is one of the earliest players in the vertical. In 2021, Chaldal acquired the company in a cash and stock deal. Mr. Raffan joined Chaldal as the CEO of BanglaMeds after the deal. BanglaMeds continues to operate as a fully-owned independent subsidiary of Chaldal. Read

Other interesting ideas 

We’re living through an age of abundant knowledge. When you live in an environment of abundance, curation becomes the key challenge. Here I share some of the things I’ve enjoyed over the last week. Please feel free to share if you come across any interesting articles, papers, or books. TIA. 

I. Book: The heart of addiction by Lance M. Dodes MD (addiction is a necessary concept/predicament that we all need to understand) 

II. Peter Thiel on the dangers of progress. Link

III. Overcoming Helplessness. Link

IV. My favorite kinds of journaling for personal growth — The Sunday Soother. Link

V. On the Rise and Fall of Airlift. Link

Mohammad Ruhul Kader is a Dhaka-based entrepreneur and writer. He founded Future Startup, a digital publication covering the startup and technology scene in Dhaka with an ambition to transform Bangladesh through entrepreneurship and innovation. He writes about internet business, strategy, technology, and society. He is the author of Rethinking Failure. His writings have been published in almost all major national dailies in Bangladesh including DT, FE, etc. Prior to FS, he worked for a local conglomerate where he helped start a social enterprise. Ruhul is a 2022 winner of Emergent Ventures, a fellowship and grant program from the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. He can be reached at [email protected]

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