Prof Kulbhushan Balooni, Director of IIM Kashipur; Prof Safal Batra, Director of FIED and Sunil Kaushik, General Manager of NABARD inaugurating the Startup Expo – ‘Agri Mela’ at IIM Kashipur campus in Uttarakhand
New Delhi (India), March 2: IIM Kashipur FIED (Foundation for Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development) marks one of its kind extravaganza event, 7th edition of Uttishtha 2023 – Annual entrepreneurship Summit. The initiative supported by Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Government of India, aims to bring socio-economic value in the Uttarakhand’s entrepreneur ecosystem by enabling the raw entrepreneurs to achieve their big dreams. This Unique and successful initiative of IIM Kashipur has successfully clocked 29 LOIs worth Rs 5 Cr funding for 15 national agri-startups. IIM Kashipur’s Uttishtha 2023 also hosted over 100 startups and nearly 20 VCs to exchange their interests. Three days of Uttishthan 2023 witnessed the National Business Plan Pitching Competition, Investors Meet and Entrepreneur’s Conclave.
Prof Kulbhushan Balooni, Director, IIM Kashipur said, “IIM Kashipur’s FIED platform has gone to a big level especially the ‘Uttishtha’. We are creating socio-economic impact in the home state by promoting the entrepreneurship with the support of state and central government. FIED team has incubated 140+ startups and out of these about 40+ startups have generated over 3.2 billion funding. These startups have also generated direct employment of 1200+ and have impacted over half a million farmers. We have identified the right talent of entrepreneurs and provided them the 360* support for creating success stories.”
During the National Business Plan Pitching Competition, agriculture startups, participated from across India, made presentations to the Investors and Industry experts. The enthusiasm of all the startup participants was remarkable and the whole process was very exciting for the key stakeholders. HimMadhu, AI-MRI, MyPahadiDukan, TheFitBread, FLAAR, Vikalp Herbals, GeeComIndia, PahariHaat, SuperFarmers, and many more presented marvelous business pitching sessions that impressed the investors and other jury members. Investors such as PinCap, FitSol Supply Chain Solutions, HBF Limited, GSF Accelerators, Omnivore and Venture Capitalists were surprised looking the startup ideas and efforts made by the founders to scale up.
Prof. Safal Batra, Director of FIED (Foundation for Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development) said, “The 7th edition of Uttishtha has taken the big leap by generating the interests of some significant investors. FIED stands tall nationally by hosting such platform in the Uttarakhand state. We have seen our incubators team going in exterior and remotest places in the state to identify the entrepreneurs with unique business ideas who can represent the future of Indian Business. The 3rd generation of farmers are not limited to crop cultivation but expanding into food processing and setting startups. By facilitating the right platform for bringing the right human resources, branding, investors, larger market place, price & packaging, we put them into the main stream business.”
Some of the IIM Kashipur FIED incubated startups are making success stories in the country. Bijak raised $ 34.1 million, LoopWorm raised $ 3.4 million and Greenpod Labs raised $0.54 million from external investors. PoultryMon, NKosh, InfiU Labs and many more have also generated funds on merit and showing ways to other registered startups.
Eminent Startup dignitaries remained present at the inaugural session of Entrepreneur’s Conclave and Agri Mela. Rajat Jain, Founder of Sunfox; Nitin Jain, Co-Founder of OFBUSINESS; Anubhav Dubey, Founder of Chai Sutta Bar delivered keynote address and motivated the startup participants. A thoughtful panel discussion on – ‘How an Ecosystem can be Created in Uttarakhand State’ made the conclave more interesting with different viewpoints of marquee startups founders such as Subhadeep Sanyal of Omnivore, Monika Pandey of YourNest, Sachin Sheron of HBF Direct, Manish Srivastava of Alphavalue.
Inaugurating the Agri Mela (Startup Expo), Sunil Kaushik, General Manager of NABARD said, “I congratulate to the IIM Kashipur FIED for making difference in the entrepreneurship journey. Entrepreneurship in Agriculture can surely bring the paradigm shift for the country’s economic growth. NABARD is committed to support for marketing and branding of startups and motivate them to grow.” Also, Prabhat Kumar, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare; and Devendra Agarwal, MD of KVS Companies expressed their gratitude towards the enthusiasm shown by the startups during the expo – Agri Mela.
Several innovative businesses made a memorable impact on the minds of expo visitors. Various startups presented fantastic business ideas, such as a clothing range made from bamboo fabric, interior design articles made from cow dung, a crockery range made from bamboo, a range of toys made from wood waste, a drone for pesticide spraying in agricultural fields, honey-coated dry fruits, organic fertilizer, wellness products, handicrafts, and hand-knits, as well as an immunity booster made from agricultural produce, incense sticks made of recycled flowers.
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