It was 2008, during the Great Recession, when Kartik Hosanagar started to noticed the switch.
Wharton students began choosing entrepreneurship over careers in consulting or banks. That meant Hosanagar, a Wharton professor who cofounded startups and has invested in nearly a dozen others including Monetate and RJMetrics, was suddenly more in demand than ever.
It ramped up even more over the last three years: he’d get emails from students every day, asking to meet with him to get his feedback on a startup idea or advice on a startup job offer. Coupled with normal office hours for students in his classes, it started to get out of hand.
His solution? Walks.
Hosanagar does a daily “brisk walk” from Penn’s campus to Center City (he lives in Society Hill with his wife, SmartyPAL founder Prasanna Krishnan), accompanied by a student who’s signed up to walk with him — and pitch him or ask for career advice. He uses a Google spreadsheet to organize the walks.
Even throughout the winter’s snow, ice and rain, Hosanagar kept up the walks. During a recent interview, Krishnan said she knows all too well about her husband’s walks.
“Sometimes I’m forced to do a walk with Kartik,” she said, winking at him.
Hosanagar’s recent investments include those in Sunnyvale, Calif.-based OpsClarity and New York City-based MaestroIQ, both of which were founded by Wharton students. He’s also working on SmartyPAL, the iPad platform for children’s books that his wife is running.
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