The Centre for Innovation Incubation and Entrepreneurship (CIIE) at IIM Ahmedabad is one of the premier incubators in the country that has been working with India's budding entrepreneurs since 2008. CIIE incubates startups not just from the IIMA community, but across the country. Over the years, they have launched several initiatives to help entrepreneurs set up innovative, disruptive and scalable ventures. These include iAccelerator, India's first accelerator programme, Bharat Innovation Fund to catalyse deep-tech ventures, and the Bharat Inclusion Initiative among others. They have also partnered with Economic Times, Department of Science & Technology (DST), Government of India to host Power of Ideas since 2010.
This year, with a focus on technology startups who are developing innovative IoT solutions for AgriTech, CleanTech, CivicTech and HealthTech, CIIE, in partnership with CISCO is announcing the first edition of the IoT Innovation Accelerator programme.
By 2020, the world will see more than 34 billion devices connected to the internet, of which 24 billion will account for IoT-connected devices. CIIE believes this will herald the next industrial revolution and is on the lookout for 10 startups who can solve critical issues in India using emerging technologies.
Nurturing startups with innovative IoT solutions
The IoT Innovation Accelerator aims to identify and support early-stage startups that are going beyond the current status quo and solving intractable problems in AgriTech, CleanTech, CivicTech and HealthTech using technology. CIIE, along with CISCO, wants to help these startups accelerate towards developing their products and making them market-ready.
Harish Krishnan, Managing Director, Public Affairs & Strategic Engagements, Cisco India & SAARC said, “We live in exciting times. Every day we see examples of innovators and entrepreneurs who are redefining India through social innovation. Cisco thoroughly understands the impact that connected technologies have on economies and societies. Their ability to positively change lives and create livelihoods is unparalleled. Supporting innovation is a long-standing commitment for Cisco, and we look forward to interacting with and supporting the cohorts along with CIIE.”
"We are excited to be working with Cisco for the IoT Innovation Accelerator. Through this program, we want to identify & nurture startups who are leveraging IoT in sectors of mass impact and give them access to mentorship, resources, and opportunities that will help them scale," says Tapish Bhatt, VP - Seed & Acceleration, CIIE.
What’s in it for startups?
Selected startups will get access to several benefits including:
- Catalytic capital of Rs 17.5 lakh for each selected startup
- Customised technical expertise from expert CISCO mentors, and customers who can validate your product and give feedback
- Access to CIIE's founder network of over 300 founders and practitioners who are building awesome companies to solve India's challenges
- Customised strategic advisory and problem-solving for early stage startups
- Diagnostic clinics that provide intensive one-on-one consulting to startups to identify the best approach to alleviate their immediate risks and draw up actionable items to solve the problems
- Visibility through CIIE platforms and networks
That's not all. Startups also get the chance to interact with CIIE-IIMA's service partners for pilot opportunities, cloud marketing and other support worth over Rs 20 lakh. They get portfolio support up to a year, which provides marketing, channel and investor connects.
They are looking for startups who are:
- Innovating in markets such as Industrial IoT, Smart City/ Government, Smart Home/ Building, Digital Health/ Personal Wellness, Precision Agriculture, and Automotive/ Mobility
- Enabling technologies like Sensors, Networking & Security, Cloud Infrastructure/ Platforms/ Development Tools, Image Processing/ Sensors Fusion, Big Data Analytics/ Machine Learning/ Deep Learning
Who can apply for the programme?
To apply for the programme, the startups should meet the following criteria:
1) Have an IoT solution or create a technology solution to address serious gaps in these areas of industry 4.0:
- HealthTech: Diagnostic devices, Consumables and implants, Patient monitoring systems
- AgriTech: Soil and crop technologies, Farm automation, Precision agriculture, Farm management, Supply chain technologies
- CivicTech: Smart city applications, Transportation, Government tech, Disaster management, Traffic signal/route management
- CleanTech: Waste management, Waste-to-energy, Water conservation-regeneration-monitoring, Air quality monitoring, Logistics
2) Need to be registered in India, with one of the co-founders based in India
3) Have the desire to run a sustainable for-profit enterprise with high impact
4) Feature a strong team with complementary skill sets and full-time founders to execute the solution
5) Have early validation on their solution through pilot customers, retention, referrals and similar metrics
Enable change with IoT solutions
The timeline for the programme is as follows:
Applications for the six-month-long programme are open from April 1, 2019, and the last date to apply is April 21, 2019. The 10 selected startups for the first cohort will be announced in May, 2019.
So, go ahead and apply for the IoT Innovation Accelerator. This is your chance to showcase your technology solutions and solve India’s most critical issues to create an impact.