Udupi: AIC NITTE inaugurated its 8-week Pre-Incubation programme for early-stage start-ups On Tuesday, May 18.
Dr. Ananthapadhmanabh Achar, CEO at AIC NITTE, stated that with a focus on healthcare technology and agriculture, AIC has incubated around 30 start-ups.
Chintan Vaishnav, professor, an innovator at MIT US mentioned that the ‘poorest person’ today is the one who produces our food. He explained that the technology made for farmers should be affordable and effective as their buying power is lesser than that of the healthcare workers. He shared that AIM has incubated around 2000 start-ups out of which 130 are agriculture-related. He explained that agriculture and healthcare are two important and different sectors.
Nitte’s Pro-Chancellor Vishal Hegde carried the inaugural ceremony further. He shared his thoughts on entrepreneurship. He said, -“Entrepreneurship for me is a journey. And for everyone here today, it’s an exciting journey”.
Vice-Chancellor Dr Satheesh Kumar Bhandary claimed that participants can hone their skills and come out with a viable start-up after this programme. It will enable the candidates to clearly understand the innovation, design, market requirements, and legal aspects of start-ups. At the end of the program, considering the feasibility and interest, few ideas from pre-incubation go to incubation where they provide mentorship and financial support from venture capitalists, training packages, and consultation.
Keynote speaker Dr P Chandra Shekara, Director General at MANAGE, shared that he was glad that NITTE is encouraging and supporting agriculture-related start-ups. He mentioned that MANAGE is autonomous and has 141 centers across the country. He encouraged students to link up with its programs after pre-incubation. They are provided financial support in the range of Rs. 5-25 lakhs. He mentioned two pointers that early-stage entrepreneurs must keep in mind. Firstly, they must engage with their families as their support can be important. Secondly, they must participate proactively in the pre-incubation training.
He stated that trainees should be familiar with GOI programs and have complete knowledge about them. They must keep in touch with local bankers and ensure they make a good impression. They should be well-informed about their technology and be ready to explain it to any stakeholder. Concludingly, he said that the entire country is talking about farmers. So, any successful idea should be shared with farmer organizations which can be used as a social laboratory for experiential learning. He focused on the need for value addition and cost-effective agricultural mechanization.
The session was concluded by the host after a vote of thanks delivered by a faculty member. The pre-incubation trainees were asked to stay behind as the group kicked off the first session of the programme immediately.
This virtual inaugural ceremony was held for about 45 minutes on the Zoom platform and had around 70 attendees.