Powered By Inc42 Brandlabs


The brand solutions arm of Inc42 Media combining Inc42’s creative and editorial strengths to create compelling stories for brands partnering with it.

GeM-Led Startup Mahakumbh All Geared Up To Foster Innovation, Collaboration


Startup Mahakumbh is a first-of-its-kind event to bring together startups, investors, incubators, accelerators and industry leaders from several sectors under one roof

The Government e Marketplace (GeM) is the presenter for the event, which will be held from March 18-20 in New Delhi

During the event, GeM will showcase its registration and onboarding process to the participating startups and give them a chance to connect with its representatives

Industry bodies ASSOCHAM, Nasscom, Bootstrap Incubation & Advisory Foundation, TiE, and Indian Venture and Alternate Capital Association (IVCA) are organising ‘Startup Mahakumbh’, a first-of-its-kind event to bring together startups, investors, incubators, accelerators, and industry leaders from several sectors under one roof.

The event will be held from March 18-20 in New Delhi and will cover AI+SaaS, D2C/ consumer brands, agritech, fintech, and many more sectors. The presenting partner for the event will be Government e Marketplace (GeM). 

GeM facilitates online procurement of common-use goods and services required by various government departments, organisations, and public sector undertakings (PSUs).

GeM’s active role in organising and supporting the event underscores its commitment to propelling the growth of startups and MSMEs by providing them with new opportunities in the public procurement domain. 

It is a paperless, cashless, and contactless platform that leverages technology to enhance transparency, efficiency, and speed in public procurement. It has largely supplanted human interaction for vendor registration, order placement, and payment processing. 

Today, GeM provides direct online access to more than 1.4 Lakh government buyers and is a dedicated marketplace for startups to list their products and services. The platform provides new opportunities to scale up businesses with central and state governments, with a seller-friendly dashboard for monitoring orders and payments. These features, coupled with capabilities to sell products up to INR 25,000 directly to government buyers, have huge potential to help onboarded MSMEs with better market linkages and business expansion. 

India’s central and state governments collectively procure goods and services worth $71 Bn annually through GeM. Currently, approximately 34,000 sellers are registered on the portal, selling roughly 1.91 Lakh products.

“GeM is a platform for procurement by the government. Over 23,000 startups are actively transacting on our platform. If a specialised startup wants to feature itself on the platform and doesn’t have numbers to show its success, owing to the nature of the industry it operates in, we feature it in front of the buyers who then choose its products or services if they find them to be feasible alternatives (Startup Runway),” GeM CEO Prashant Kumar Singh said.

Startup Runway offers brands intellectual property right protection and facilitates startups to exclusively list their innovative products with minimal technical specifications under 14 globally recognised startup subsectors, including advanced manufacturing and robotics, agtech and new foods, AI, big data, and analytics. 

“From small-scale manufacturers to organisations like ONGC, GeM is open to all and has no entry barriers. To facilitate the journey of the startups, the platform has interactive tutorial videos in multiple languages. Further, business opportunities can also be spotted on the portal, helping startups make their way,” Singh added. 

Propelling The Growth Of Public Procurement

Ahead of the action-packed three-day event, Singh said GeM is looking to onboard more startups on the platform.

“Startup Mahakumbh will be a historic event because nothing of this scale has ever been organised. We want to engage very actively in the event. It is only when people come together, interact and see each other that the fire of ideas is ignited. That is exactly the idea to be at Startup Mahakumbh. We will also be there. We are also a startup and we will also be learning. Our attempt will be to onboard each of these startups on our portal so that we can do possible hand-holding and act as a minor catalyst in this startup ecosystem,” he said. 

During the event, GeM will showcase its comprehensive registration and onboarding process to the participating startups and women-led MSMEs, and its interactive multilingual learning management – an innovative solution to help sellers navigate the platform effortlessly. 

It will also provide a chance for MSMEs to connect with GeM representatives for additional clarifications. Besides, Singh will address the participants in a panel discussion on the role of startups in realising the vision of ‘Viksit Bharat’. Various other GeM officials will also be holding masterclasses over the course of the event to indulge participating startups in meaningful discourse. 

Launched in 2016 by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, GeM has revolutionised India’s public procurement system. It boosts the country’s digital economy by encouraging the use of technology in government procurement processes.

GeM also enhances inclusivity by bringing SMEs, women entrepreneurs, startups and artisans within the fold, leading to increased competition and better value for money for the government. 

The ‘Womaniya on GeM’ initiative helps women entrepreneurs and women self-help groups sell handicrafts and handloom, accessories, jute and coir products, home decor, and office furnishings directly to government buyers, sans intermediaries. 

GeM’s standardised and automated procedures have raised transparency and efficiency in the public procurement process. It has integrated with 1.5 Lakh+ post offices and 5.2 Lakh+ village level Entrepreneurs (VLEs) through common service centres (CSCs) for a seamless last-mile delivery experience. 

Startup Mahakumbh – Celebrating Ingenuity

Startup Mahakumbh’s logo conveys the essence of an energetic gathering celebrating innovation and entrepreneurship in India. The event stands for the same, reiterated in its tagline ‘Bharat Innovates’. The event is committed to showcasing innovation from every corner of Bharat – made in India and built for the world. 

The event will feature mentorship clinics, pitch competitions and a multi-track conference featuring leadership talks, panel discussions, workshops and several exciting activities for startups and future entrepreneurs. 

The ‘Future Entrepreneurs Day’ on March 20 will focus on cultivating the entrepreneurial spirit among students. The programme will see participation of nearly 5,000 attendees handpicked by colleges and incubators nationwide for their inclination towards entrepreneurship.

Overall, Startup Mahakumbh is expected to host 1K+ startups, 10+ thematic tracks, 1K+ investors, 500+ incubators and accelerators, 5K+ conference delegates, 10+ country delegations and 40K+ business visitors over the span of three days.

Note: We at Inc42 take our ethics very seriously. More information about it can be found here.

You have reached your limit of free stories
Become An Inc42 Plus Member

Become a Startup Insider in 2024 with Inc42 Plus. Join our exclusive community of 10,000+ founders, investors & operators and stay ahead in India’s startup & business economy.

Unlock 60% OFF
Cancel Anytime
Unlock 50% OFF
Cancel Anytime
Already A Member?
Discover Startups & Business Models

Unleash your potential by exploring unlimited articles, trackers, and playbooks. Identify the hottest startup deals, supercharge your innovation projects, and stay updated with expert curation.

GeM-Led Startup Mahakumbh All Geared Up To Foster Innovation, Collaboration-Inc42 Media
How-To’s on Starting & Scaling Up

Empower yourself with comprehensive playbooks, expert analysis, and invaluable insights. Learn to validate ideas, acquire customers, secure funding, and navigate the journey to startup success.

GeM-Led Startup Mahakumbh All Geared Up To Foster Innovation, Collaboration-Inc42 Media
Identify Trends & New Markets

Access 75+ in-depth reports on frontier industries. Gain exclusive market intelligence, understand market landscapes, and decode emerging trends to make informed decisions.

GeM-Led Startup Mahakumbh All Geared Up To Foster Innovation, Collaboration-Inc42 Media
Track & Decode the Investment Landscape

Stay ahead with startup and funding trackers. Analyse investment strategies, profile successful investors, and keep track of upcoming funds, accelerators, and more.

GeM-Led Startup Mahakumbh All Geared Up To Foster Innovation, Collaboration-Inc42 Media
GeM-Led Startup Mahakumbh All Geared Up To Foster Innovation, Collaboration-Inc42 Media
You’re in Good company