Case Study Ajay Bam

Case Study Ajay Bam
The late spring of 2002 had been a maddening period for Vayusa founder Ajay Bam. Here he had a unique idea (confirmed by a high-profile technology grant and a host of exceptional advisors), a leading venture capital firm seventy-five percent sold, a talented software developer ready to go, and keen interest from a number of key players in the electronic payments industry. Vayusa had seemed at once to have it all, and nothing whatsoever. Ajay knew that unless he was able to secure a substantial start-up investment, and soon, he would be forced to give up the fight and grudgingly return to a six-figure income as a Wall Street analyst.
When his landlord, Idealab, had informed him that they would be increasing the monthly
rates at their downtown Boston office space, Ajay responded to the news by moving out:   We were running out of money at that time to pay the rent, so we thought a   better use would be to go back and work from home. To be honest, we had thought that being in the city would do some good, but it didn’t add much…Instant messaging is the best idea that ever happened. We all can talk every day, save time, money and everything. When you start something you have to be frugal—and even after you get money, you still have to be frugal.
That summer, the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance (NCIIA) awarded Vayusa a second grant—this time for $8,200—and things finally began to move.
In addition to the grant, the NCIIA invited the Vayusa team—Ajay and Phuc
Truong—to present their concept at its annual technology forum held at The Museum of
American History in Washington D.C. Ajay was thrilled at the opportunity to make their
case:   The Smithsonian event was a good validation of the idea because we   actually showed our mobile payments solution to a lot of people. It was good to get their feedback on the idea. I think that most people loved it. We were one of twenty-five teams; the best and the brightest from...