IIT Madras Launches Information Platform On Incubators, Accelerators

Opportunity India Desk
Opportunity India Desk Nov 20 2023 - 4 min read
IIT Madras Launches Information Platform On Incubators, Accelerators
Known as ‘Incubators’, the AI-powered platform will help startup founders to identify incubators and accelerators across India and shortlist one that best fits their requirements.

The Institute of Eminence Research Centre at IIT Madras, known as the Centre for Research on Startups and Risk Financing (CREST), has developed the country’s first information platform on incubators and accelerators. The platform is developed in partnership with YNOS, an IIT Madras-incubated startup. The information platform will contain comprehensive information on incubators and accelerators, which seeks to play an important role in helping startups navigate an uncertain entrepreneurial ecosystem.

While India had about 1,000 active incubators, until now, the information about them was scattered and not easily available in a single location. Entrepreneurs had to spend a lot of time and effort to identify the incubator most suitable for their startup.

Known as ‘Incubators’, the AI-powered platform will help startup founders to identify incubators and accelerators across India and shortlist one that best fits their requirements.

The platform was launched by Dr Jayesh Ranjan, IAS, Principal Secretary, Departments of Information Technology, Electronics and Communications, Industries and Commerce, Government of Telangana. Congratulating CREST, IIT Madras and YNOS, Ranjan said, “The growth of the Indian start-up ecosystem depends on a strong incubator ecosystem. Research has shown that there is a direct correlation between start-up formation and number of incubators. Recognizing this, various governments have focused on strengthening the incubation ecosystem in the country.”

The Incubators Platform can also benefit the CEOs and Managers of incubation centres to get the attention of startup founders for their incubation centres and benchmark themselves against comparable incubators and constantly improve their effectiveness. Other stakeholders associated with the development of the startup ecosystem such as educational institutions, government and funding agencies, would also benefit from this platform.

Beneficial For Entrepreneurs

“However, getting information about various incubation centres has always been a challenge. Since there are information platforms that provided a one stop resource on the incubation network in the country, entrepreneurs had to visit through multiple websites to get the information they needed,” said Dr Jayesh.

“With the availability of Incubators, this problem has been squarely addressed. There is no doubt that the platform would significantly benefit entrepreneurs by presenting various incubation opportunities available to them and helping them to identify the perfect incubator for their startup,” he added.

Elaborating on the benefits to incubators, Dr Jayesh said, “The platform will no doubt benefit the incubators too in many ways. Being a neutral platform, it gives an opportunity to incubators to get the attention of startup founders, policy makers, and investors and showcase the strengths of their incubation centres. The managers of the incubation centres can also use this to benchmark their facilities with other incubators and constantly achieve higher levels of performance”

Highlighting the need for such tools, Prof A Thillai Rajan said, “During the initial few months after incorporation, start-ups face a high degree of uncertainty. They need a lot of support, handholding and mentoring as they start finding their bearings. It is here that Incubators for start-ups play would a very important role in helping start-up founders tonavigate the uncertain terrain. The Incubators help the start-up founders at multiple levels: Firstly, it gives an exhaustive list of incubators in the country that start-up founders can reach out to for incubation support. Secondly, it provides information on various parameters which helps start-up founders to identify incubators suited for their requirement.”

“For each incubator, it gives the list of start-ups supported and the different funding schemes being implemented which helps the founders to infer the prevailing ecosystem in the incubator. Fourthly, Incubatorsalso provide information on the investors who have funded the start-ups supported by the incubator helping entrepreneurs to analyse the strengths of the incubators’ investor network. Fifthly, Incubators helps to easily compare different incubators and assists founders to determine their order of priority in selecting an incubator,” he added.

Highlights Of Incubators Platform

Data on more than 920 incubators and accelerators

Comprehensive information on each incubator such as host organization, startup funding agency, number of startups supported, investors who have invested in the startups supported by the incubators, among others

Focus areas of existing startups supported by the incubator

Enables easy comparison of incubators on various parameters helping the startup founders to decide on the incubator that would be most suitable for their startup

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