Good artists copy, great artists steal – Pablo Picasso (as quoted by Steve Jobs)
Many times, when referring to the history books, we encounter people whose ideas have been stolen by others and they died bankrupt. And then there were people like Marie Curie who gave their inventions to the world for free without any kind of license or patents, so that the same could be put to good use without any restrictions.
Arun Narasani, who is the co-founder of Brain League has been helping people and institutions to write and file patents applications using the right process and research in this field.
Arun was born in a village near Guntur. His dad was an artist, who moved to Chennai to join the film industry an assistant director, when Arun was very young. Arun studied in Chennai from LKG to 7th standard. That’s when his dad moved into production, but it didn’t work out well and he lost all the money. Then the whole family had to move back to Guntur.
“Things were going rough and we had a pretty much hand to mouth existence, My dad was selling all the utensils he had for cash and he also had a couple of acres of land which he sold for our education , somehow he put my brother in a residential junior college because he wanted him to focus on studies. And I remember he sold a small chain my mother had and we started a small video store with about 70 video cassettes. I was running it most of the time. I was running around giving the cassettes and taking the cassettes in Guntur which is a pretty small place. we ran it for 3 years; from my 8th to 10th, I wasn’t into much of the studying at that point of time. Slowly in another two-two and a half years we started a small bakery where we used to earn about maximum 300 rupees a day and somehow continuing our existence”, says Arun candidly.
Journey to IIT
Arun was in 9th when he looked around at his friends who were from well to do families and realized that he had to do something about his life. He started studying hard and focusing more on his education; as a result, he finished school with around 74% in CBSE, which we believe is commendable achievement considering the situations at that time.
About his decision to join IIT, Arun recollects:
“It was a time when I was evolving , getting into focus kind of mode. I asked my dad to put me in a good school, I want to write JEE, and he was in a shock. He put me in a good school for +2, I told him very clearly, I don’t want to work in the shop, somehow you have manage this. I want to change things, I want to focus on JEE. My brother ridiculed me for this, but it was not their fault. When I got in to the school I realized my level of understanding of various subjects was really low, I started studying for IIT JEE for another two years by taking previous five-six years books right from 7th standard. And I cleared JEE and went to IIT Madras. It was a great moment for us.”
Post IIT, Arun worked at various companies including Mphasis, Cognizant before joining IIM Bangalore. While studying at IIMB, Arun met his old friend and schoolmate Kalyan Kankanala, who finished his Masters in Law from the US and was pursuing his PhD from National Law School.
During their regular conversations, they came across the problem of IP and Patents and there were not enough players in the market who understood technology and failed to add value to IP protection process. And thus they saw a value here and real opportunity in the global IP scene which led him to start his entrepreneurial journey.
Talking about the name Arun Says,
“Brain League represents the extraordinary league of people who use the creativity to make the world a better place. The thought of the phrase is an inspiration from the title of the movie “The league of extraordinary gentlemen.””
What it Does
Brain League helps individuals and corporation get their patents, by writing patent applications for them, help them file and get patents.
They have a different teams of highly dedicated people who specialize in various technology verticals and helps the inventor put together a very strong application. The team works to understand the invention to a very detailed level so that they can in turn work on the patent application with full commitment. The team works hard and uses the right kind of language which makes it difficult for people to circumvent the rights of the inventor.
Since Brain League started in 2004 they have expanded to over 5 offices including one in the Bay Area, and over 100 employees. They have served more than 500 clients in the past 9 years and have been growing at least over 25% YoY since the beginning, while they grew over 100% in the financial Year 2012-2013.
Arun shares his key lessons from his journey:
1. Patience and perseverance pays off. Everything takes time. That includes developing a product, gaining expertise in providing a service, maturing as a company, setting up processes, gaining acceptance/confidence of clients and market etc. It is extremely important to have patience to go through the grind of an entrepreneurial journey.
2. Focus is the key. There may be many opportunities that come by and go. Ultimately, it is important to identify and stick to the areas where one is really good at and create value. There is no point in chasing opportunities just because they may be rewarding in the short term.
3. There is nothing like a brilliant idea. It’s about one’s passion and market acceptability. If there is a market for a particular product/service, one can create his own space. Before signing off, Arun left us with a message for fellow entrepreneurs, a verse from the Gita.
“Follow your passion and do not worry about results. If one puts in hard work and is determined to create a path of his own, success will follow.”
Karmanye Vadhikaraste, Ma phaleshou kada chana !
Ma Karma Phala Hetur Bhurma tey Sangostva Akarmani !!
Srimadbhagvadgita, Chapter 2, verse 47
We wish Brain League a successful and a great journey, Visit Brain League here.
McDowell’s No. 1 Platinum respects Leaders like Arun who had the courage to follow their passion and and also encourages more people to follow their dreams and join them in their unconventional journey.