Start-up India Hub resolves over 12,000 queries in three months

Jul 6, 2016 0

New Delhi– The Start-up India Hub has been able to resolve over 12,000 queries received from start-ups since it began operations in April this year, the government said on Wednesday.

“The hub has been able to resolve 12,290 queries received from start-ups through telephone, e-mail and twitter,” the Union Commerce Ministry here said in a status report.

The Start-up India Hub was operationalised on April 1, 2016, to resolve queries and provide hand-holding support to start-ups.

“Start-up India Hub would soon be launching an interactive online learning and development module to educate Start-ups and aspiring entrepreneurs, through various stages of their entrepreneurial journey,” the report said.

In order to augment the existing list of incubators, which issue recommendation letters, the ministry has set up a module.

“This shall enable incubators to obtain recognition from the Government of India,” it said.

“Seven proposals for research parks, 16 proposals for TBIs (Technology Business Incubators) and 13 proposals for Start-up Centres have been recommended by the National Expert Advisory Committee formed by the Human Resource Development Ministry,” it said.

“These proposals shall be implemented in the current financial year,” it added.

In this connection, industry organisation Nasscom has said India ranks third globally with the number of start-ups crossing 4,200.

In its latest report titled “Start-up India – Momentous Rise of the Indian Start-up Ecosystem”, Nasscom said that there was a 100 per cent growth in the number of private equity, venture capitalists, angel investors, along with a 125 per cent growth in funding last year over 2014.

The total funding in the India-based start-ups was estimated to be nearly $5 billion by 2015.

India is also the world’s youngest start-up nation with 72 per cent founders younger than 35 years, as per the report. (IANS)

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Microsoft, TCS to jointly mentor start-ups

Jun 23, 2016 0

Bengaluru–The Technology arms of global software majors Microsoft and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) on Thursday announced a joint initiative to mentor start-ups and engage with them to make innovate solutions for the global market.

“Microsoft Accelerator and TCS co-innovation network will create a platform to spur the Indian start-up system through an open framework,” the IT majors said at ‘Think Next Summer 2016’, a Microsoft Accelerator flagship forum here for thought leaders intended to drive transformation through innovation.

Ravi Narayan

Ravi Narayan

As access to markets and customers remains a challenge for Indian start-ups, the partnership will provide start-ups access to their networks and relationships across customers, investors, academia and industry, creating a value proposition in the enterprise marketplace.

“The progress India has made in IT and entrepreneurship over the years changed the landscape offering new entrepreneurs unmatched opportunities. As one of the contributors to the start-up ecosystem in this country, we felt it was a story worth telling,” said Microsoft Accelerator global director Ravi Narayan, releasing an e-book on the “History of Indian Start-up Ecosystem” on the occasion.

Another e-book – “Timeline of Indian Start-up Ecosystem” – was also released.

The joint initiative will also connect start-ups with corporates, which will get access to innovative solutions for their business needs while providing greater market access to start-ups.

“The partnership highlights our efforts to engage with start-ups and underlines our commitment to provide innovative solutions to our diverse customer base. As we enter a new phase of innovation and computing, companies must co-innovate and create strategic partnerships to solve challenging problems for customers,” said TCS global head for hi-tech industry solutions Nagaraj Ijari at the day-long event.

The joint programme will also offer participating start-ups access to the expertise and client-base of both the software majors and create opportunities to innovate and transform the business landscape.

The 12 graduating startups from the event are Altizon, Tarnea, Aureus Analytics, Baby Chakra, Reverie, Strides, Locus, Admission Table, Distiman,, Yellow Messenger and Report Bee.

They made presentations on their ventures to about 550 delegates comprising corporates, investors, thought leaders, and Microsoft management who partnered to push the collaborative innovation.

Altizon announced the launch of iProd, a revolutionary IoT (Internet of Things)-based based product to empower manufacturers to optimize productivity and overall equipment effectiveness along with Distiman, a mobile app that maximises profits for mom and pop retailers through on-demand stocking.

“The interesting thing about India becoming a start-up nation is that this transformation happened not long ago, but around us.. As a citizen of the start-up ecosystem in the country, we decided to take an overview of the developments,” Naraynan added.

Infosys’ co-founder and former Unique Identification Development Authority of India (UIDAI) chairman Nandan Nilekani spoke on ‘An alternate view of the future: India in the age of technological disruption’ and Microsoft India chairman Bhaskar Pramanik on ‘The role of start-ups in India’s digital transformation journey’. (IANS)

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SAP Labs launches start-up accelerator in India

Jun 23, 2016 0

Bengaluru– Enterprise application software behemoth SAP Labs India on Thursday launched accelerator program SAP Start-up Studio, aimed at providing mentoring, infrastructure and technology support to early-stage start-ups.

“India is home to the fastest growing ecosystem of start-ups and one of the most fertile grounds for new businesses. The aim of SAP Start-up Studio is to support Indian start-ups with a complete ecosystem,” said SAP Labs India Managing Director Dilip Khandelwal in a statement.

Dilip Khandelwal

Dilip Khandelwal

Marking the German global Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) giant’s establishment of a dedicated program to driver entrepreneurship in India, the SAP Start-up Studio has selected its first set of seven early-stage start-ups.

Cloud computing based healthcare platform CloudKare, reverse logistics solutions start-up Blubirch, digital chat-based artificial intelligence provider, e-commerce start-ups Sellerworkx and Moglix, energy management solutions start-up Ecolibrium Energy and enterprise productivity start-up Stratawiz Technologies are the selected ventures.

The 75-seat incubator located in SAP Labs India Whitefield campus will focus on the domains of Internet of Things, Big Data and Cloud among others.

The one year incubation period may also extend beyond the specified time, along with access to SAP’s ecosystem of customers and partners.

SAP has also expressed its interest in taking an equity position and referring a start-up to SAP’s merger and acquisition team for the next stage of growth if required.

“India is now known as one of the most beneficial markets for start-ups. SAP Start-up Studio will serve as a catalyst to further accelerate the growth of start-ups,” said SAP SE Executive Board Member Bernd Leukert in the statement.

Across the globe, SAP enables nearly 3,10,000 companies to operate efficiently with its applications and services by bringing together boardrooms, warehouses and several other departments.

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Indian Cabinet approves Fund of Funds for start-ups

Jun 22, 2016 0

New Delhi– In a bid to extend funding support for start-ups, the union cabinet on Wednesday approved the establishment of Fund of Funds for Startups (FFS) at Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) for contribution to various Alternative Investment Funds (AIF).

“The union cabinet has approved the establishment of Fund of Funds for Startups at Small Industries Development Bank of India for contribution to various Alternative Investment Funds, registered with Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), which would extend funding support to start-ups,” a statement said.

The corpus of Rs 10,000 crore for FFS will be built up over the 14th and 15th Finance Commission cycles, subject to progress of the scheme and availability of funds, it said.

The government provided Rs 500 crore to the corpus in 2015-16 and Rs.600 crore was earmarked in the 2016-17. Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) will monitor and review performance in line with the Start up India Action Plan while SIDBI will manage day to day operations of FFS.

“The Fund is expected to generate employment for 18 lakh people on full deployment, a statement said.

A corpus of Rs10,000 crore could potentially be the nucleus for catalysing Rs 60,000 crore of equity investment and twice as much debt investment, it said.

The government unveiled Start up India Action Plan unveiled in January 2016.

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Chinese investors to fund 10 Indian startups

May 3, 2016 0

Bengaluru– As many as 15 Chinese investors representing nine firms have shortlisted 10 Indian startups, operating in mobile technologies, e-commerce and medical technology, for up to $5 million seed and Series A funding, it was announced on Tuesday.

However, the shortlisted Indian startups selected at the ‘Date with Chinese Investors’ were not disclosed to avoid poaching from rival investors, while another five to seven startups are being reviewed for funding.

“We have chosen Bengaluru over other cities to start because of the great infrastructure and tremendous support given by state government. Manyaare thrilled to see the potential among Indian startups,” said investor and OnionFan CEO Hutu.

Pickup Wheat (Shimai) Finance, Harmony Invest, Grand (Daguan) Capital, Incapital, Zhejiang WenChuang Group, YeahMobi, Hangzhou Zhexin Information Technology and Cyber Carrier are among the firms which participated in the event scheduled from May 1-3.

The Chinese investors visited the Karnataka government’s Mobile 10X Hub in Diamond District to evaluate the entrepreneurial pitches of more than 150 startups which arrived from Chennai, Hyderabad and Mumbai.

“The event was aimed to show the landscape of Chinese and Indian venture and investment, and to facilitate the innovation and communication between the two countries,” said an official statement.

Funding interest from China is aimed at expanding the business range and global impact of Chinese investments organisations while on the other hand Indian startups stand to benefit from better and easier funding.

The event was organised by tech media and investment company OnionFan in association with Mobile 10X. (IANS)

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UP rolls out major incentives to boost start ups

Apr 29, 2016 0

Lucknow–In a bid to boost start ups, particularly in the information technology sector, the Uttar Pradesh government has waived off the stamp duty on land purchased for building offices or bulit-up offices, an official said on Friday.

This has been done under the IT and Start-Up Policy-2016 rolled out by the Akhikesh Yadav government.

However, the government has put a rider that these units getting exemptions must commence their operations within the next three years.

Similarly, the electricity duty for these units have been waived off for almost five years. It has also been decided to provide grants to these units to contribute to the employees’ provident fund. (IANS)

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Start-up funding being explored for oil, gas sector

Mar 22, 2016 0

New Delhi–State-run oil and gas companies are planning to create a venture capital fund to encourage start-ups to develop new business models and infuse innovation into India’s hydrocarbons sector, Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said on Tuesday.

“PSUs (public sector undertakings), in consultations with the petroleum ministry, are planning the creation of a start-up fund for the oil and gas industry,” Pradhan said at the Indian Oil Corp’s second gas conclave here.

Indian Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan

Indian Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan

Making the case for start-ups in the hydrocarbons sector, he cited the example of the telecom sector and of industrialists like Ratan Tata who are investing in new enterprises.

Speaking to reporters later, Pradhan said the time had come to change the marketing strategy from liquid fuels to gas and encourage new business models in the sector to promote innovation and create infrastructure.

“PSUs are working on setting up a venture capital fund to encourage start-ups to develop new business models, marketing plan, technology and innovation into hydrocarbons. They should invest and join as partners for start-ups,” he said.

“Indian intellectual capacity is contributing immensely to the global oil and gas economy. We would like the Indian energy market too to benefit from that capacity.

“Any start-up needing hand-holding can seek support from the fund. Public sector companies will independently evaluate the commercial viability of the project and take a decision on their equity participation,” he added.

Pradhan said his ministry has advised public sector oil and gas companies to create a corpus that would be utilised to invest in new businesses with an innovative business model and bring efficiency.

Declaring that use of natural gas would contribute towards half of realising the target set by Prime Minister Narendra Modi of reducing oil imports by 10 percent by 2022, Pradhan said replacing oil by gas in this manner would contribute much towards India meeting its carbon emission commitments under COP 21.

“Gas is the future of the Indian economy,” he said, noting that in a state like Gujarat, which has been focusing on renewable energy, gas accounts for a quarter of the state’s energy basket.

“Small industry in Gujarat is supplied with domestic gas. We want to enhance our alternative energy basket, and it won’t take much time for the gas market and prices to stabilise,” he added.

In this connection, Pradhan informed the audience that the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board will on Wednesday open the bids received for building a new gas pipeline on the east coast running from Contai in West Bengal via Dattapulia to Paradip on Odisha’s coast.

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Karnataka to open four technology business incubators

Mar 18, 2016 0

Bengaluru–The Karnataka government would set up four technology business incubators across the state in 2016-17, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said on Friday.

“The incubators will be set up in the areas of Internet of Things (IoT), Electronics System Design and Manufacturing (ESDM) robotics, 3D printing, nanotechnology, medical devices, health technology and clean technology,” he said while presenting the budget.



Referring to the start-up policy framed to encourage innovation and building an eco-system for growth of start-ups in IT, biotech, ESDM and other knowledge sectors, he said state-run Keonics would set up the incubators and common instrumentation facilities in Bengaluru and in the IT parks of Shivamogga, Bagalkote and Kalaburgi.

“Ten incubators will also be set up in post-graduate and professional institutes across the state under the new age incubation network. An incubator will come at Bagalkote for research and development in biotech start-ups,” he said.

The budget has also proposed to set up centres of excellence and finishing schools in IT, electronics and animation sectors on the lines of Biotechnology Finishing Schools (BTFS) across the state.

“The Rs.56 crore Bengaluru bio-innovation centre ha been commissioned to provide access to high-end instrumentation and laboratory facilities to micro, small and medium enterprises,” Siddaramaiah said.

The state government has also set up the Karnataka Semiconductor Venture Fund with Rs.100 crore corpus to provide venture capital to chip companies.

“The Karnataka Geographic Information System (K-GIS) has been set up to use spatial technologies in decision-making and planning,” he said.

The budget has proposed to allot Rs.222 crore to the department of IT, BIT and S&T in the ensuing fiscal.

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Start-ups should venture in bamboo enterprise

Mar 18, 2016 0

New Delhi– Start-ups should be encouraged to take up bamboo trade and development, Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) Minister Jitendra Singh said here on Friday.

Global Bamboo Summit 2016 Bamboo DayChairing a high-level coordination meeting for the upcoming Global Bamboo Summit to be held in Indore next month, he said that efforts must be made towards greater economic viability and use of bamboo.

He said that states from northeast will send their delegates and artisans and would set up stalls in the summit.

Organized by Madhya Pradesh government with National Bamboo Mission and Indian Federation of Green Energy (IFGE), the three-day summit will begin on April 8.

The summit will focus on Make in India with bamboo, mainstreaming bamboo in government programmes, promoting research and development, streamlining policy and legal framework and bamboo as a change agent in poverty alleviation, employment generation and climate change, an official statement said.

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TiE Boston Gets Ready for TiE StartupCon 2016

Mar 17, 2016 0

CAMBRIDGE, MA– Pallavi Singh and Shaloo Savla, two of the chairs of last year’s TiE StartupCon, are back as Co-Chairs of TIE StartupCon 2016 as they hope to make this conference on April 15 even bigger and better than last year.

TiE StartupCon is organized by TiE-Boston, the second largest TiE Chapter in the world.

Last year’s conference focused on rebranding TiECon to TiE StartupCon to put startups at the core of the conference and to bring the focus to young entrepreneurs.

“Our panels focus on topics relating to the ideation and innovation stages for a startup and the execution and scaling of a company,” said Singh, founder and CEO of Beacon Innovation Group, an intellectual property and innovation firm which provides support to entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs.

TIE StartupCon 2016, which is known as the biggest conference for entrepreneurs on the East Coast, will be held on April 15 at Boston Marriott Copley Place Hotel, which is located at 110 Huntington Ave in Boston.

The conference has three tracks this year: (1) Ideate & Innovate, (2) Scale and (3) What is trending in Tech, Healthcare and Pharma.

The three keynote speakers are: Clayton Christensen, Desh Deshpande and Bob Langer.

Clayton M. Christensen

Clayton M. Christensen

Clayton M. Christensen

Christensen is the Kim B. Clark Professor of Business Administration at the Harvard Business School; and is regarded as one of the world’s top experts on innovation and growth. Christensen has served as a director of many companies, and has advised the executives of scores of the world’s major corporations. These companies generate tens of billions of dollars in revenues every year from product and service innovations that were inspired by his research.

Christensen, an experienced entrepreneur, has started four successful companies. Prior to joining the HBS faculty, in 1984 he and three MIT professors founded CPS Technologies, which has become a leading developer and manufacturer of products from high-technology materials. He is the best-selling author of eight books and more than a hundred articles.

Desh Deshpande


Desh Deshpande

Gururaj “Desh” Deshpande is the President and Chairman of Sparta Group LLC, a family investment office and is also the Chairman of Tejas Networks. He has pursued an entrepreneurial career for the last three decades. He is involved either as the founder, a founding investor or chairman of several companies including Cascade Communications, Sycamore Networks, Coral Networks, Tejas Networks, Cimaron, Webdialogs, Airvana, Sandstone Capital, A123 Systems and Curata.

Deshpande serves as a life-member of the MIT Corporation, and his support has made possible MIT’s Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation. Leveraging the experience gained at the MIT Center, the Deshpande Foundation has facilitated the set up of three other centers; Deshpande Center for Social Entrepreneurship in India, Merrimack Valley Sandbox in Lowell/Lawrence Massachusetts and Pond-Deshpande Center at the University of New Brunswick in Canada. Deshpande co-chairs a National Council to support President Obama’s innovation and entrepreneurship strategy.

Bob Langer

Bob Langer

Bob Langer

Robert S. Langer is the David H. Koch Institute Professor (there are 11 Institute Professors at MIT; being an Institute Professor is the highest honor that can be awarded to a faculty member). Dr. Langer has written over 1,300 articles. He also has over 1,080 patents worldwide. Dr. Langer’s patents have been licensed or sublicensed to over 300 pharmaceutical, chemical, biotechnology and medical device companies. He is the most cited engineer in history.

He served as a member of the United States Food and Drug Administration’s SCIENCE Board, the FDA’s highest advisory board, from 1995–2002 and as its Chairman from 1999-2002.

Singh said that about 1,000 entrepreneurs, investors, business executives and professionals are expected to attend the event.

Pallavi Singh

Pallavi Singh

“Last year, we had the largest number of attendees since our 2005 conference, a great lineup of panelists and keynotes, including the Forbes 30 under 30 panel and a great TiE Sharks program,” said Singh. “This year, we are excited to showcase 50 of the hottest startups in New England as part of the Startup Expo, a new program for StartupCon. We have had an incredible amount of interest from companies wanting to participate.”

Singh said that the organizing team of the conference is refining the mentor component into the mentor breakfast this year and that will allow new entrepreneurs to connect in a more focused way with serial entrepreneurs and investors.

Mentorship is one of the things that differentiates TiE from other groups in Boston and TieBoston is excited to showcase it the conference, said Singh, adding that the organizers have recruited a diverse range of panelists, including many women entrepreneurs such as Bettina Hein from Pixability, Diane Hessan from the Startup Institute, Jana Eggers from NaraLogic, and Liz Powers from Artlifting.

“We look forward to seeing you at TiE StartupCon! We are so excited by the lineup of keynotes and speakers and expect to sell out,” Savla said. “In particular, I am excited to hear the Shared Economy Keynote which has some of the Northeast’s hottest shared economy startups, such as Handy, Hourly Nerd, Spot and Fasten.”

Singh is the Founder and CEO of Beacon Innovation Group, an intellectual property and innovation firm which provides support to entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs at world-class organizations like Anaqua (raised over $125M from Bessemer and private equity), J&J, Georgia Tech, and Red Hat.   She received a B.S. from Worcester Polytechnic Institute. She has been an active member of TIE since 2011, and a Charter Member of TiE Boston since January 2015.

As a Charter Member, she has been active in strengthening many of TIE-Boston’s flagship programs, including serving as Co-Chair of TiE StartupCon (f/k/a TiECon East), the largest startup conference in the Northeast, for two years, 2016 Chair of TYE (a powerful mentoring program for our high school entrepreneurs) and has performed due diligence for TiE Angels (TiE’s impactful investment arm).

Shaloo Savla

Shaloo Savla

Savla is a research analyst with Fidelity Investments in the Fixed Income Division of Fidelity Management & Research Company (FMRCo), the investment arm of Fidelity Investments. Prior to joining Fidelity in the Boston area, Savla worked at the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) in its Toronto office, where he specialized in business transformation projects, most notably with clients in the financial services and industrial goods practices.

Outside of these experiences, Savla has lived and worked in regions around the world including Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, Eastern Europe and South Asia.   Savla received his MBA and MPP degrees from Harvard Business School and the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University in 2013. Originally from Toronto, Canada, Savla received an HBA in Business Administration and a BSc in Health Sciences, which he received in 2006, both from the University of Western Ontario. In 2015, Savla was selected as a “40 under 40” recipient by the New Hampshire Union Leader. He is a charter member of TiE-Boston and has been Co-Chair of TiE StartupCon in 2016.

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