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Stepping forward in the startup ecosystem, Gujarat University recently launched its Startup and innovation policy. The launch event was attended by Union Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu and Bhupendrasinh Chudasama, Minister of Education for Gujarat.

At the event, Prabhu visited Gujarat University Startup and Entrepreneurship Council (GUSEC) to explore efforts undertaken by GUSEC to support student entrepreneurs, innovators and startups. He interacted with select few startups supported by GUSEC.

Addressing the gathering, Prabhu said, “There is always an inevitable need for University and Industry to work together, but what Gujarat University is doing is far, far more important. Gujarat University Startup and Innovation Policy is a landmark development and will go a long way to build an institutional framework that is necessary for the growth of the entire economy and society.”

Prabhu also said that he will work with the University to understand what and how can the idea be taken forward across the nation. He conferred annual GUSEC Annual Awards 2018.

What is Gujarat University Startup And Innovation Policy?

The startup and innovation policy envisions Gujarat University as a hub of global standards for creating, nurturing and supporting innovative businesses across a variety of sectors. The policy takes a practical approach to interventions proposed by the Student Startup and Innovation Policy (SSIP) and has been devised over numerous internal iterations through on-ground experience and efforts of GUSEC over the last two years.

The policy creates several initiatives, reforms, and mandates which are divided into several platforms like infrastructural platform, academic platform, skill development platform etc.

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Also, it is to be noted that the benefits of the policy can be availed not only be Gujarat University students but other individuals too but only if there is no conflict of interest.

The policy launched by Gujarat University will be deployed and implemented through Gujarat University Startup and Entrepreneurship Council with an oversight by the Board of GUSEC.

Some of the key points of the Gujarat University Startup and Innovation policy are:

  • By 2021, each institute shall be required to have prescribed-minimum resources and infrastructure at a startup and innovation support system, creating a massive and decentralised, hub-spoke based, support system model with a capacity of supporting over 10K student innovators and entrepreneurs, who can avail support at zero cost on zero-day.
  • All resources available with the university and affiliated colleges shall be made available to all startups, innovators and entrepreneurs at no or low-cost.
  • Establishment of a school of entrepreneurship, startup track for an entrepreneur to directly avail a post-graduate diploma in entrepreneurship or equivalent, credits in attendance for students pursuing entrepreneurship and innovation, startup literacy program.
  • Skill development initiatives through a comprehensive online platform for all students.
  • The policy formalises several recognition platforms for startups and innovators.
  • The policy formalises the possibility of starting up for University faculty and establishes an interexchange between consultancy projects and startups
  • Additional space of at least 50,000 sq.ft. for startup and innovation activities shall be made available 2020 towards scaling efforts geared at pre-incubation, incubation and acceleration of innovative ideas of students and recent alumni with GUSEC’s fundamental zero-day, zero-cost approach in mind.

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Also, the funding for startups will be through Grants, such as the GUSEC JumpStart, GUSEC Liftoff, and GUSEC Surge grants etc and Angel/venture funds, through proposed initiatives such as creation of the Gujarat University Alumni Angel Fund by early 2019.

Founded in February 2016, Gujarat University Startup and Entrepreneurship Council (GUSEC) has been undertaking key initiatives to create an end-to-end support system to enable young entrepreneurs and innovators of Gujarat to start up, innovate and scale their ideas into sustainable businesses.

Being the first state to announce IT startup policy in June 2016, Gujarat also became the first state to introduce Student Startup and Innovation Policy in January 2017.

As part of the initiative, a State Innovation Fund with a corpus of $29.3 Mn (INR 200 Cr) will be provided to the students during the next five years. For this, $14.6 Mn (INR 100 Cr) will be allocated by the State Government and the remaining amount will be created by internal sources.

Even though several states have now launched their startup policies and many others are working on various startup policies, Gujarat has taken the front baton again with the launch of Gujarat University startup and innovation policy. The huge number of entrepreneurs and innovative ideas booming from Gujarat will be highly awaited.

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