Syed Ahsan Ali Shah is an ardent tech lover, a stellar programmer and a rising cyber entrepreneur. His career interest includes software programming, entrepreneurship, freelancing, web development. He is the creator of, an online garments sale point which gained immense popularity particularly in cricket WC 2015 days due to official sports Tee in the product line. Ahsan is a tech savvy geek whose major earning source is the freelancing on several sites, blogging etc. He shared his thoughts with Technology Times in a recent interview

Syed Ahsan Ali Shah is an ardent tech lover, a stellar programmer and a rising cyber entrepreneurTell us briefly about yourself and glimpse of your career?

I hail from a modest family background. I am an avid technology enthusiast, a software programmer aiming high to establish sky high to reach the top; being an entrepreneurial minded person I had a dream to establish my own enterprise and inflate it into a bigger thing with hard work, acumen and tech backing. I am freelance programmer and work on several online projects, my major chunk of earnings come from the online reservoir of opportunities.

What are your future plans in terms of career progression?

I am galvanizing my programming, web development, and entrepreneurial skills to establish myself as a leading tech entrepreneur in future. And, I have planned to set up a software house in forthcoming years and will also take it to next level by opening same kind of venture in Dubai. I am working hard to grasp the requisite skills and then apply them for maximum benefit.

How did you get idea of starting

It purely came from someone else. During study my friend blithely advised me to open up e-commerce site as it was a growing trend these days. I took it serious and started working on it. I along with my friend did the research work, registered the domain, created catalogue, developed system for expense management, devised a marketing strategy and hoped into the bandwagon of cyber entrepreneurship.

The website was primarily constructed for a short time or you can say it was just a pilot project, and we only put World Cup Cricket 2015 official Tee on our site to target limited audience and see whether we can manage small scale enterprise or not. I extend my goods like A-copy B-copy.

The idea worked and the site fetched us more than our expected profit. We didn`t abolish it as we wanted to take it to the next level and recognize it by adding ladies garments as according to our research it had maximum potential of commercial benefit. We are still in the working phase and soon the site will bang on cyber space.

How do you see the rising trend of growing e-merchants in the country?

I believe cyber industry has transformed the mode of business, and it is most effective manner where you can conveniently streamline your business with ease if you have only basic knowledge of technology whereas managing a conventional business having physical presence is too much complicated and most of the people restrain themselves due to its attached complexities.

The cyber business trend in Pakistan is result of realization of its potential and as long as nurturing and mentorship of cyber entrepreneurship is not done, the cyber market will not mature. In coming years, the online industry will be on rise and all the cyber entrepreneurs will be categorized by consumes being of top or bottom category. As it is on nascent stages therefore, consumers trust level is not up to the mark due to transaction security, and quality of product.

How to guage an online commerce site from consumer perspective?

Genuine business owners mark their products and label it as copy if it is, and this way gain trust of consumer. One cannot simply retain the consumer for long time by flawed practices. Transparency assurance is must to be successful in not only cyber business but in everything you do in life.

The consumers are the best judges; if a cyber entrepreneur retains its consumer for extended time and he places order again and again on a particular cyber venture then it is the success of online business owner. The consumer evaluate online business owners on basis of convenience, delivery time, payment mode, quality of product, correlation of the claims made on site with the overall cycle from placing order to the delivery.

What is the role of initial financial capital in startup?

The role of money is crucial but effective management of expense is also a trick and is equally important. No doubt, one can start online business with paltry money in the hand, but multiplication of assets will depend on the business model, strategy, keeping consumers intact, shedding expenses where required and maximizing the profit through business acumen. The money is oxygen for every business and if you are not multiplying it your business is stationary.

How to pull the youth towards cyber entrepreneurship?

Here comes the responsibility of academia. The institutions need to establish tech incubators. Where selected tech students should be imparted with necessary skills required to run an online business.

LUMS and Plan9 of Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB) are doing splendid job in this and we have already started moving in right direction and I am very hopeful that in coming years a competitive cyber ecosystem will be developed and a lot of professional entrants will try their luck. Apart from academia, the already established cyber giants must provide trainings to youth and do mentoring to deliver to the community.

How technological advancement plays a role in national development?

The technology plays a robust role in any nation’s progress. The neighbor country China is the plain example. They focused on technological advancement and have risen as one of the strongest economies of the world. Similarly, Pakistan can follow their footprints and technological awareness. We can enhance literacy through technical education. Also, we lack effective mainstream media to broadcast technological advancements. In our country we need to develop the interest of youth in technology.

What are your guidelines for youth who want to build career as cyber entrepreneur?

First of all, there is no shortcut to be successful. One certainly has to dig deep in order to understand the dynamics of a particular business. They should do proper homework. Like checking their financial assets, product list, potential market analysis, marketing strategy, privacy strategy, operational methodology etc.

One must also have a thick skin in order to sustain failure. Because it can be the turning point of ending up the business or taking it to the top. All it takes is a simple formula of holding your nerves. Psychological aspect can be a make or break thing and can impact on your decision making on critical business matters.

What are your comments on Technology Times and Tech TV?

As I said earlier, we lack mainstream media for dissemination of technological information to general public. So Technology Times is the light in the dark. S&T promotion is very important but not given proper importance in Pakistan. That’s why Technology Times is doing its great efforts. It is an immensely appreciable venture which is sailing alone and setting example.

I wish best of luck for Technology Times and its team for putting up unprecedented efforts. And urge them to continue the good work.