Intel mentors 17 start-ups in India

Oct 19, 2016 0

Bengaluru–By providing technology and tools, chip maker Intel Corporation mentored 17 Indian start-ups to innovate products in diverse areas, said the US-based company on Wednesday.

“Of the 17 start-ups which utilised our laboratory facilities here, nine have launched products in the market and five have products ready for customer trials, while three are at the design stage,” Intel India General Manager Nivruti Rai told reporters here.

Intel’s Indian subsidiary has set up the Maker Lab at its campus in this tech hub in January to help start-ups accelerate their hardware and systems for innovating products and solutions using its infrastructure, technology, tools and mentorship support.

“The start-ups used the lab for projects spanning education, sports, health, agriculture, BFSI (banking, financial services and insurance), and e-governance across IoT (Internet of Things), cloud and client compute,” said Rai.

The lab also supported seven start-ups incubated by the Science and Technology Department of the Indian government under the Intel’s ‘Innovate for Digital India’ challenge.

“We are focused on innovation, systems design and entrepreneurship in India. With 15 years of commitment to research and development, we continue to build a community of innovators across the country,” Rai added.

As a catalyst, Intel has associated with various programmes to foster innovation and making the government’s Digital India vision a reality.

“It’s heartening to see many products and solutions being developed by the hardware and systems start-ups using our lab as their innovations will help solve consumer and business needs and contribute to Digital India and Make in India vision,” said Intel India Director Jitendra Chadda on the occasion.

The company is collaborating with the government to encourage entrepreneurial and innovation talent as a not-for-profit initiative and is independent of its own research and development activities in India.

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IIM Calcutta’s Innovation Park plans challenge of 5,000 start-up ideas

Oct 19, 2016 0

Kolkata– The Indian Institute of Management Calcutta Innovation Park (IIMCIP) plans to launch a grand challenge targeting 5,000 start-up ideas by March next year, an official said here on Wednesday.

“We are contemplating to launch a grand challenge, an event which will run over a couple of months to target around 5,000 start-up ideas by March,” Uttam Kumar Sarkar, Dean, New Initiatives and External Relations (NIER), IIM Calcutta, told the media here.

“It could be a grand challenge in smart city ideas or any other sector. We are chalking out the details,” Sarkar said.

IIMCIP promotes entrepreneurship and innovation in research and business through industry-academia partnership and under its ‘INVENT’ initiative, plans to support more than 40 start-ups with funding of up to Rs 25 lakh.

The programme is a collaboration between the company, DFID UK and Technology Development Board, India, to aid for-profit social enterprises, in eastern India.

“The social entrepreneurs can create the biggest impact on our country,” said Saibal Chattopadhyay, Director, IIM Calcutta.

The organisation also hopes to incubate 100-plus start-ups by the year 2020 and has recently invested in six start-ups from various sectors.

Currently, the organisation has 14 incubatees. Additionally, it is in the process of onboarding another eight incubatees of which six are from Kolkata.

“The current incubatees have already raised investments amounting to Rs 6 crore. In the current financial year, the incubatees have already generated revenue of Rs 7.5 crore. During the coming financial year the incubatees are projecting revenue of Rs 18 crore,” said Chattopadhyay. (IANS)

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IBM, Indian Angel Network collaborate to boost Indian start-up ecosystem

Oct 19, 2016 0

Bengaluru– US-based technology company IBM and Indian Angel Network (IAN) on Wednesday announced a partnership to accelerate technology innovations in the start-up and entrepreneurial ecosystem in India.

Under this collaboration, the IAN portfolio companies will work with IBM to build thought leadership by leveraging workshops and “IBM IX Studios” programme and they will have access to IBM’s cognitive, cloud, analytics, IoT and mobility services.

With more than 400 investors from 10 countries, IAN is India’s largest angel network and has already made over 20 investments in the first half of 2016.

“We believe this synergistic partnership will breed innovative technologies and grow global footprint companies from India,” Padmaja Ruparel, Co-founder, President IAN, said in a statement.

IBM and IAN will organise knowledge sharing and enablement sessions on cognitive learning, analytics and product design.

“IBM will engage, influence and mentor the early stage start-up ecosystem and additionally nurture an IP-led start-up ecosystem focused on IOT, artificial intelligence, security, commerce and design thinking,” added Nipun Mehrotra, Vice President, Growth Initiatives IBM India/South Asia.

The IAN portfolio start-up companies will also have the opportunity to apply for the IBM Global Entrepreneur Programme, which provides mentoring and networking opportunities with enterprise clients. (IANS)

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14 Intel India Maker Lab startups showcase products, solutions

Oct 19, 2016 0

Bengaluru–Intel India on Wednesday hosted its first “Maker Lab Startup Conclave and Demo Showcase” at its campus here where 14 startups from the first batch of “Intel India Maker Lab” showcased their products and solutions.

Set up a year ago, the ‘Intel India Maker Lab’ is helping startups accelerate their hardware and systems innovation towards creation of new products and solutions by offering infrastructure, technology, tools and mentorship support, the company said in a statement.

The startups utilised “Intel India Maker Lab” facilities in the areas of education, sports, health, agriculture, Banking, Financial services and Insurance (BFSI), e-governance, Internet of Things (IOT), Cloud and Client Compute.

“With over 15 years of relentless commitment to research and development, we continue to build a community of innovators in India,” said Nivruti Rai, General Manager, Intel India and Vice President, Platform Engineering Group, Intel Corp.

The “Intel India Maker Lab” supported seven startups that came out from the Department of Science & Technology (DST)-Intel “Innovate For Digital India” Challenge.

The startups that showcased their products and solutions are: Aerx Labs, Avench, Green Ocean Research, Jayalaxmi Agrotech, Klassik Klonec, Parkzap, Skylark Drones, Smartron, Terrablue XT, Acceleron Lab, BrownLogic, Phoenix Robotics, SrishtiESDM and Yaw software.

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T-Hub launches initiative to connect startup ecosystems

Oct 15, 2016 0

Hyderabad– T-Hub, one of India’s largest startup ecosystem builder, in partnership with Uber and TiE Silicon Valley has announced the launch of T-Bridge — a unique initiative to connect startup ecosystems from around the world to India.

The programme will connect Indian startups with global market opportunities, and help bring global startups to India.

T-Bridge will help startups access UberEXCHANGE — Uber’s flagship startup mentorship program and TiE Silicon Valley’s mentor network.

Telangana’s Information Technology Minister K.T. Rama Rao, who is currently on a visit to the US, inaugurated T-Bridge at Uber’s headquarters in San Francisco.

He opened T-Hub’s first outpost in the US in association with Uber and TiE Silicon Valley.

T-Bridge will enable startup communities in India and around the world to cross-pollinate ideas, innovate and create channels for knowledge transfer.

It will also create a network of mentors, VCs, incubators and accelerators that is advantageous to the Indian startup ecosystem, said a statement released from the minister’s office here on Saturday.

T-Bridge will provide a platform for such fast-track tech companies looking to tap into India’s huge consumer market for technology.

“We have a strong vision to make Hyderabad one of the top 10 startup cities in the world. T-Bridge is one such move towards opening a channel of investment from the world to the state of Telangana,” said Rao.

“The Telangana government has been one of India’s most progressive states. The vitality and transformational mindset of its leadership gained quick notoriety within the startup world. TiE Silicon Valley is pleased to host the first T-Bridge outpost in Silicon Valley,” said TiE Silicon Valley’s incoming President Ram K. Reddy.

“Today more and more people around the world want to build something themselves. Through initiatives like UberEXCHANGE, our mentorship program for Indian startups, we hope to spur entrepreneurship,” said Uber’s senior Vice President for policy and communications, Rachel Whetstone.

Creative partnerships like T-Bridge will strengthen ties between India and the global startup scene, Whetstone said.

T-Hub’s CEO Jay Krishnan said since the launch of T-Hub last year, Hyderabad witnessed a threefold increase in startup activity, and added “The city is abuzz with over 30 incubators and co-working spaces. There is something happening in every corner.”

“We’re committed to enabling and growing this community and helping Indian entrepreneurs access global resources. T-Bridge is one such initiative in that direction,” Krishnan said.

T-Hub is a unique public/private partnership between the government of Telangana, three of India’s premier academic institutes (IIIT-H, ISB and NALSAR) and key private sector leaders. (IANS)

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Rs 2,000-crore credit guarantee fund for start-ups soon

Oct 15, 2016 0

New Delhi– The government will soon set up a credit guarantee fund for start-ups with a corpus of Rs 2,000 crore with the aim to provide them with easy funding options, a top official said here on Saturday.

“With this corpus of Rs 2,000 crore in place, the start-ups would receive financial support for their ventures, which will further motivate entrepreneurship,” Ramesh Abhishek, Secretary, Department Of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), said while addressing a conference on “Start-Up India, Challenges and Sustainability”, organised by the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI).

Without prescribing any time limit for the fund to come up, Abhishek said with the fund becoming operational in the near future, start-ups can look forward to financial assistance for their ventures that would be available easily.

Responding to a suggestion mooted by PHD Chamber President Mahesh Gupta, seeking relaxations in existing taxes for start-ups, Abhishek said that the issue is being pursued by the government with various stakeholders.

Speaking on the occasion, Minister of State for Human Resource Development Mahendra Nath Pandey said that sufficient incentives should be given to those who wish to set up their venture, to promote the spirit of innovation. (IANS)

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Odisha to organise start-up conclave

Oct 5, 2016 0

Bhubaneswar– In order to promote start-ups in Odisha, the state government has decided to organise a two-day Start-up Conclave in Bhubaneswar from November 28.

This was decided at a meeting chaired by Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi here on Wednesday.

The main objectives of the event would be to motivate youth towards entrepreneurship, showcase the start-up ecosystem in Odisha and attract more start-ups to the state.

MSME Secretary L.N. Gupta said that the conclave would be organised in collaboration with the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion, Government of India, TiE, Bhubaneswar and TiE Silicon Valley.

The MSME department would be the nodal agency.

The state government would conduct an idea competition to receive best ideas from youth aspiring to be entrepreneurs.

The event would be organised in 10 sessions including the inaugural session.

The state government has already launched a start-up policy with a target of making the state home to at least 1,000 start-ups over the next five years.

It envisages Odisha to be among the top three start-up hubs in the country by 2020 through strategic partnerships, conducive ecosystem, investments and policy intervention.

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20 win Infy awards for making in India

Sep 26, 2016 0

Bengaluru– Twenty organisations from diverse sectors were on Monday declared winners of the first edition of Infy Maker Awards for “making” in India by the software major’s Infosys Foundation.

“The Infy Maker Awards are testimony to our commitment to encourage ‘making’ in India and acknowledging those with innovative solutions for leveraging technology to make things easier,” said the Foundation in a statement here.

Each winner will be given an award of Rs 5 lakh, a trophy and a certificate.

Kiran Mazumdar Shaw

Kiran Mazumdar Shaw

A panel of judges representing technology, academia and the business community selected the winners from 280 entries.

The jury, comprising Biocon Chairperson Kiran Mazumder Shaw, Author Rama Bijapurkar, Aarin Capital Partners’ Chairman Mohandas Pai, and Infosys’ Chief Operating Officer Pravin Rao evaluated the entries that were relevant to real-world problems and used technology in an innovative way.

“The awards recognise some of the best minds that unleash the power of creativity and imagination of the next-generation of thinkers. We believe the awards will ignite the spirit of ‘making’ in India and celebrate excellence in innovation,” Rao said on the occasion.

As the awards aim to inculcate and foster an ecosystem of makers, the IT major intends to empower and reward them across communities and organisations.

The awards also enable the creation of an ecosystem of innovation through “making” that will help India contribute to the larger global community of inventors and entrepreneurs.

The winners are from various categories, including health, energy, education, sound and music, social change solutions, robotics, art and design, artificial intelligence and electronics.

The Foundation initially launched the awards in support of the “Nation of Makers” initiative of the US President Barack Obama in June 2015.

Among the winners under the social change category are Sourabh Alagundagi, Sandeep Patil and Shreya Gudasalamani of AssitYou, a communicative glove solution for hearing impaired people to communicate.

Sanjeev Arjun Gaur for regenerative brakes for cycle rickshaw to make pedalling easier; Vuppari Kalyani for multi-functional elevator to move in a vertical and horizontal direction; Ilampothigai K. Vignesh, V. Anand Gopi and Ibrahim Ahmed Hassan Awad for a device to ensure safety and communication amongst linemen; Aravind S. Balaji and G. Aravind for maritime border warning system for fishermen.

Selfie innovators Arun Kumar and S. Vishnu Priya for public over-dump limiter sensor to track garbage levels; Chetan Prasad for invisible bus bay to ease parking in overcrowded areas; Aakash Goel for “Shour”, the smarter way to shower by conserving water; and K.N. Panda, Smritiparna Satpathy and Jayant Pradhan for TycheeJune, a technology to self-track and cure punctures.

Under health category, Deepika Giri, V. Krishna Kumar, Kavitha Sowndararajan and L. Jamuna for heartbeat monitoring system using light-fidelity (Li-Fi); Shantanu Pathak and Aditya Kulkarni for Clinic-in-box for pregnant rural women, who do not have access to healthcare facilities; C. Cornelius Durai, T. David Thevaram and S. Sairam for Aarduous therapist for stroke patients for physiotherapy needs.

Abhinav Shekhar Vashistha for a solution to enable autistic people communicate; Lovi Raj Gupta, Kunal Panchal, Yerra Prasanthi, Satish Reddy and Vishakha Choudhary for Sitby, a posture proctor to alert wrong posture at work; and Veerpal Sharma, Divyanshu Varshney and Roopam Sharma for Dr Fizio to ensure that physiotherapy is on the right track.

In the energy category, Krishnanand Venkatasubramanian and S. Senthilvel were chosen for their low-cost wind turbine.

In the artificial intelligence category, Kannabiran S. Gokul, Srinath V., and Boobalan B., for a human safety system for two-wheeler vehicles; and in the electronics category, Nagarjuna Paturi for weather proof liquid level switch vehicles and indicator to prevent water overflow.

“The Infy Maker Awards programme celebrates the spirit of making that is innate to all of us. The awards seek to recognise and reward the creativity of makers whose ideas and solutions have the potential to address the challenges facing the world, said the Foundation’s US arm Chairperson Vandana Sikka on the occasion.

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Hashtaag start-up raises $1 million for expansion

Sep 22, 2016 0

Bengaluru– Mobile applications developing start-up Hashtaag on Thursday announced raising $1 million (Rs.6.7 crore) through angel funding to expand its operations in domestic and overseas markets.

“The funding will enable us to hire more talent, build better products and expand our operations in India and globally,” said Hashtaag Chairman and Co-Founder Krishna Vemula in a statement here.

The city-based, year-old engineering firm works with entrepreneurs and start-ups to develop mobile apps that transform businesses through product strategy consultation, cross-platform development, quality assurance and support.

The firm is also a development partner of mobile apps such as Doors, Shouut, Paperboy, FaceChat, Curiocty,AandALogoon, owned by celebrity icons and serial entrepreneurs.

“We plan to ramp-up headcount to 100 plus from 40 by this year-end and set up offices in Chennai and Mumbai. Our San Francisco office caters to serial entrepreneurs in the US,” said other co-founder B.N. Jayavardhan.

The company sought funding to also support product research and development on the strength of posting $1 million revenue in the first year of operations.

“As mobile apps need premium design and development, we are working to provide excellence to our clients. Angel investors are recognising our potential to capture a slice of the growing market,” said Jayavardhan.

According to multinational professional services firm Deloitte, India is set to become the largest base for mobile app developers by 2017, while global research and advisory firm Gartner predicted that 42 per cent of enterprises would increase spending on mobile app development by about 30 per cent this year. (IANS)

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Entrepreneurs avoiding consensus likely to stay in market: Study

Sep 11, 2016 0

New York– Entrepreneurs who resist pressure to follow a consensus are most likely to stay in the market, receive funding and ultimately go public, says a study.

According to the study, published in the journal Administrative Science Quarterly, entrepreneurs who follow the prevailing beliefs in a market are less viable, while non-consensus entrepreneurs prosper.

“Startups and investors face constant pressure to follow the consensus and that pressure is hard to overcome,” said Elizabeth G. Pontikes, Associate Professor at the Chicago Booth School of Business in the US.

For the study, the researchers contained data from 4,566 organisations in 456 different market categories and assembled data on software organisations, their market categories, when they received venture capital funding and when they had an initial public offering.

They also interviewed investors, board members and executives in the software industry about the decision-making process for entering a new market.

The study found that both firms and venture capitalists engaged in herding behaviour by entering markets that received venture capital funding.

“Those firms and venture capitalists following the consensus suffered in the long term. They put too much emphasis on the viability of a hot market and overlooked whether their product had a good fit for the market,” Pontikes noted.

“Entrepreneurs who entered ‘untouchable’ markets — those tainted by bankruptcies — applied more scrutiny to product-market fit and, in turn, fared better,” Pontikes added.

The study has implications for entrepreneurs and investors across industries. Firms would do well to institute processes that force executives and decision makers to carefully examine whether their products are suited to compete in a market before entering. (IANS)

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