In a bid to support and recognise the innovation of the Indian startup ecosystem, the government’s Startup India project is looking to host National Startup Awards in 2020.
The National Startup Awards will recognise and reward outstanding startups and ecosystem enablers that are building innovative products or solutions and scalable enterprises, with high potential of employment generation or wealth creation, demonstrating measurable social impact. It has also been emphasised that the measure of success will not only be the financial gains for the investors but also a contribution to the social good.
The Idea Behind National Startup Awards
In its explanation for National Startup Awards, the government said that under the 19 specific action items of Startup India Action Plan, substantial progress has been achieved not only on that front, but on many other initiatives beyond. The government has said that the National Startup Awards has been conceptualised to further strengthen the startup ecosystem in the country.
The awards will recognise exceptional startups across various categories that are:
- Providing innovative solutions to solve real problems and challenges for India
- Developing innovative technologies, products and solutions from India to the world
- Building businesses that are scalable, sustainable and responsible
- Delivering measurable developmental gains
How Can Startups Apply?
The challenge is open to startups as well as incubators and accelerators. The competition is open to players across sectors such as agriculture, education, health, enterprise tech, space, security, finance etc.
Since the competition is open for applications by startups across sectors, it is to be noted that the startup should be recognised by the department for promotion of industry and internal trade (DPIIT) with a product in the market.
Further, here are the other essential conditions to apply for the awards:
- Startups must have all applicable trade-specific registrations (example: CE, FSSAI, MSME, GST registration, etc.)
- There should not have been any default in the last three years (FY 2016- 17, 17-18, 18-19) by the entity or any of its promoters or any of their group entities.
- Startups must submit audited financial statements (balance sheet, profit & loss accounts) for the last three financial years (FY 2016-17, 17-18, 18-19)
What Will The Winning Startups Get?
The National Startup Awards 2020 will have a winning startup across each sub-sector, who will get INR 5 Lakh each. Further, winner and four runner ups shall be given opportunities to present their solutions to relevant public authorities and corporates for potential pilot projects and work orders.
Also, the winners and runners up shall be given priority for participation in various national and international startup events sponsored by DPIIT.
What Do Incubators And Accelerators Have To Win?
Globally, incubators have become ecosystem enablers with an array of initiatives to promote the creation and development of tech innovation, and the results are plain to see in many developing countries.
To support the ecosystem enablers, the 2020 National Startup Awards are also open for entries from incubators and accelerators. The condition for them is to be structured as an independent entity-a Company, a Public trust or a Society. Further, an incubator and accelerator should be operational at least for two years as on January 1, 2020.
Also, an incubator should have successfully graduated a minimum of 15 startups while an accelerator should have successfully graduated a minimum of 10 startups. The reward for the winning incubator and accelerator is INR 15 Lakh each.
The entries are open till December 31, 2019.