8 energy startups led by women entrepreneurs bag $10,000 seed fund each from POWERED Accelerator
Recently, eight energy startups led by women received a seed fund of up to $10,000 each as the second cohort of POWERED Accelerator programme. The Demo Day, held in Bengaluru, was attended by key stakeholders of the industry including corporates, investors, and industry experts exploring synergies with the cohort.
The participating startups were evaluated on multiple criteria with the Demo Day as the final round of evaluation. Along with Navin Honagudi, Partner of Kae Capital, the jury comprised Ananth Aravamudan, Energy Expert of Villgro among others.
Bhavana Chittawar, Founder of FinEffi Solutions, was one of the eight startups receiving the seed fund. The startup uses Internet of Things (IOT) devices and data analytics to save energy in the residential and commercial sector and make the end user aware of their energy consumption.
Speaking on her experience, she said,
“The programme has created a great passion in me to get more and more out of my business. My team can feel this difference. It has helped in understanding the expectations of investors and opened up avenues to approach them.”
Like Bhavana, there are the other women founders whose initiatives are making a dent in the energy startup space.
Women’s safety and empowerment: The first step to women empowerment is putting each other first. Pushan Renewable Energy is a social enterprise that brings solar power to homes and put special emphasis on the energy needs of women at home. Likewise, Durga Energy solar module manufacturing company is managed and operated by local tribal women with rigorous training in technology and operations.
Sustainability: The startups that works with long-term aim of sustainability are REVY Environmental Solutions for wastewater treatment, Cydee Technologies developing streetlights that will reduce the light poles by 60 percent and save the material, GTarang Energy converting individual and industrial waste into useful energy, and Prakriti Biotechnologies that is converting organic waste into energy. DD Bio Solution Technology Pvt Ltd produces green energy from agro waste providing livelihood for rural women and an optimised supply chain of agro waste utilisation.
Keynote speakers for the event emphasised on the role of women entrepreneurs in the sector and the impact it has on overall development goals in the long run. The speakers include Starlene Sharma of Cleantech Women Innovation Network, Huda Jaffer of Selco Foundation, Dr. TV Ramachandra from Centre for Ecological Sciences, IISc Bangalore.
POWERED Accelerator is an entrepreneurship programme that focuses on women-led businesses globally in the energy value chain. It is a joint initiative of UK-based charity Shell Foundation, the UK Government’s Department for International Development (DFID), and Government of India’s Department for Science and Technology (DST) operated by Zone Startups.
Adritha Subbiah, Energy and Green Growth Analyst, DFID India, British High Commission remarked on womens' role saying,
“This pioneering entrepreneurship programme is strengthening the ecosystem for women’s active and substantive participation across the energy value chain. We look forward to seeing these businesses and, with them, the POWERED network grows to continue to support innovation in the sector.”