Easy availability of capital is essential for entrepreneurs to grow. Funding from angel investors, venture capital firms become available to startups only after the proof of concept has been provided. For an innovative idea to grow and to develop into concept trials, it is essential to provide seed funding to startups. Hence, to encourage students to become future entrepreneurs, various research schemes have been running to provide seed grants to transform their knowledge into tangible products at an early stage of their career.
Over the years, India has shown its potential as a lucrative market for doing businesses. India has the 3rd largest startup ecosystem in the world. According to data, 2018 saw 50,000 startups of which around 8,900 to 9,300 were technology-led startups whereas 1300 new tech startups were born in 2019 alone implying there are 2-3 tech startups born every day. The Government of India is understanding the value of working with disruptive innovators across the value chain and this is how the budding entrepreneurs will nourish. This will lead to the overall development of the country and building the startup ecosystem in India.
*Startup Programmes resulting in promising technologies*
In 2016, the All India Council of Technical Education released a Startup policy to address the need to inculcate innovation and entrepreneurial culture in higher education institutions. Various institutions followed the guidelines to provide opportunities to students, a supportive environment in recognition and expert advice which ultimately has resulted in the development of promising technologies.
IIT Delhi has been running two internal research schemes for encouraging young and ignited minds to become future entrepreneurs. Students Startup Action Programme and Discover & Learn (1-2-3-4) are the two schemes run by the Institute’s Industrial Research and Development (IRD) wing. Various projects have been launched under this scheme keeping national interest in focus. The selected student teams under these schemes are given a seed grant of Rs. 2 Lakh per year. Under this scheme, some of the innovative startups with promising technologies have emerged.
*Vecros Technologies Pvt Ltd.* – The startup devised a computer vision-powered drone with a server-based cloud app to monitor and scale the drone operations for industrial inspections.
*SUXMA Pvt Ltd.* – Developed a point of care device for early-stage diagnosis of subclinical mastitis in dairy animals.
*Flexmotiv* – A former incubated startup at IIT Delhi developed Flexmo, an all-terrain, slip-resistant crutch for the disabled and elderly.
Various projects have been sponsored by IIT Delhi including Blockchain Implementation of Health Electronic Records (HER), Spirited AI, Develop energy-efficient permanent magnets and switched reluctance motors for two-wheeler electric vehicles (EVs).
The key goals of initiating Student Startups is to empower all universities to set up and execute the broad agenda of innovation and preincubation. This has created an environment that converts at least 1% of graduates into job creators by innovation and allied means & support is extended to at least 1,000 student-led innovations per year.
*Healthcare Informatics to enhance medical infrastructure*
Further to boost the health infrastructure of the nation, IIT Bombay for the first time introduced healthcare Informatics, an interdisciplinary dual degree programme, which will bring expertise from computer science, bioinformatics, statistics, AIML (artificial intelligence & machine learning) and medical science. This will cater to advancing science and engineering that underline Healthcare Informatics. Worldwide, the healthcare Informatics market is estimated to be US$ 125 billion.