Delhi, India: Under the Startup India initiative, the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) has launched the inaugural edition of the ‘National Incubator Capacity Building Program’ to bolster the growth of incubators across the nation. This program is in line with the recommendations made by the National Startup Advisory Council (NSAC) constituted by DPIIT, chaired by Shri Piyush Goyal, Minister of Commerce & Industry, Government of India, aimed at creating a robust ecosystem for fostering innovation and startups to propel sustainable economic growth and generate employment opportunities.
The program is a hands-on training initiative aimed at enabling incubators to become self-sustaining. The incubators will receive 3 months of mentorship and advisory support, as well as access to knowledge resources and tools to facilitate their growth. The program is being executed by Villgro, which was the winner of the National Incubator Award 2020 conferred by DPIIT, GoI.
The program will assist incubators in devising tailored business models and organizing masterclasses and workshops to manage the Startup India Seed Fund Scheme (SISFS). It will also provide access to VITALS (Villgro Information Tracking and Learning System), a technology-driven information system designed to track incubation progress of enterprises.
Twenty incubators will be mentored and guided by Incubator Business Advisors such as Paul Basil, Mohammad Azhar, Chand Das, Rama Kannan, and Arun Venkatesan. They will undergo a 12-16 week-long three-phase hybrid capacity development program consisting of self-learning modules and in-person sessions.
Speaking about the National Incubator Capacity Building Program, Mr Prashant Prakash, Member National Startup Advisory Council, said, “There is a dire need for efficient incubators that can support the vibrant startup community and scale innovative solutions. We are delighted to launch this program, which will help us identify our first cohort of visionary incubators and enable them to create impact at scale. Over the last 7 years, Startup India has been an enabler of the India Startup Ecosystem, and we look forward to working with incubators in developing process-driven incubation and investment, through this program.”
“India’s start-up ecosystem has witnessed immense growth in the past few years & incubators have played a vital role in this regard. However, start-ups in Tier 2 & 3 cities require guidance and mentorship in order to develop a sustainable and scalable business model. Villgro is determined to develop the capacity of incubators by guiding the cohort with knowledge of the domain, incubation plans, and customized roadmaps,” says Mohammad Azhar, Lead, Govt & Public Sector Initiatives, Villgro.
The National Incubator Capacity Building Program is open for application on the Startup India Platform until March 25th, 2023. Eligible applicants are Indian-incorporated or registered entities with a special focus on early-stage startups, having a minimum of 5 employees and at least 5 start-ups incubated in the current or last financial year. Interested incubators can apply for the program using the following link: www.startupindia.gov.in/content/sih/en/ams-application/.
The program is scheduled to begin in May 2023 and incubators will complete the program on August 30th, 2023.