An Entrepreneur Is Born

Shishir Mehrotra, the energetic co-founder of an Internet infrastructure startup named Centrata, waits outside a meeting room at the posh Four Seasons Hotel in Boston. It's a cloudy morning in April, and it's hard to describe him at this particular moment: He's half brash entrepreneur encountering potential backers, half anxious college senior taking the first steps into his own future. "I'm pretty sure they'll give us an offer," he says of CommonAngels, the group of private investors he's about to meet. A moment later, Mehrotra transforms into a dreamy undergraduate. "I think I went to a fraternity formal here," he mutters wistfully.

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