Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL), an Assam-based company has launched a $1.5 Mn (INR 10 Cr) fund to promote startups in Northeast India. The NE region includes eight states viz. Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura and Sikkim. The corpus is the initial offering of the company. The process fund was launched in Guwahati.
NRL Managing Director of Numaligarh, P. Padmanabhan said, “We want to create an entrepreneurship ecosystem in Northeast India. Once the ideas are submitted, the jury will evaluate the same.”
The company is also looking to reach out to educational institutions, to spread awareness about the programme.
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“The fund from NRL will be provided to startups as a grant. Startups will undergo an evaluation process to assess if the project requires seed funding, scale up funding or any other assistance. For the same, the company will tie up with an incubation centre”, said General Manager (technical) Numaligarh, Nikunja Borthakur.
Apart from, this the company also plans to hire domain experts to assist startups. The company also stated that once the current corpus of fund gets exhausted it will infuse more money.
Last year in August 2016, North Eastern Development Finance Corporation Ltd (NEDFi) set up a $15 Mn (INR 100 Cr) fund for startups. The venture fund aimed to boost the entrepreneurship ecosystem in the North East region.
At the time, NEDFi had also inked an MOU with the Ministry Of Development Of North Eastern Region, North East India. (Ministry of DoNER). Currently, the government of Assam is under the process of formulating a startup policy. Apart from this, it also plans come up with a startup centre soon.
(The development was reported by ET.)