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Doing Business in India For Dummies® by Ranjini Manian

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Identifying and Avoiding Common Obstacles

When you’re planning for a journey into unfamiliar territory, you’ll be working in the dark to some extent. But just because the course that lies ahead is unfamiliar doesn’t mean that it’s uncharted. In this section, I expose some of the rough terrain that you may encounter and clue you in on how to avoid it with adjustments to your business plan.

Following your assumptions

You’re probably excited about your business prospects in India, and that’s natural, but don’t make assumptions in your business plan that show your endeavor getting started and growing too quickly. For example, clearance from a pollution control board or getting your water and electrical connections established immediately may not be as swift and comprehensive as you think. Such assumptions can leave you disappointed or in a bind later. India is buzzing with economic activity, but some processes still take longer than in the West. Also, consult your Indian partners—don’t take them for granted.

Ken Green, a seasoned businessman, had been running a successful enterprise with an Indian partner for a while. He wanted to diversify into a related field, using a special raw material that he knew the Indian company made. He assumed the company would be happy to support him and didn’t take the precaution of checking with them. He prepared a detailed business plan and managed to get the backing of financiers, too. However, when the partners were presented with the project, they ...

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