The Indian Government, on August 25, 2021, launched a program to support 300 IT startups. Christened as SAMRIDH, the scheme will help startups and entrepreneurs in their most challenging initial risk phase.
The development comes a week after the newly-appointed Minister of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) Ashwini Vaishnaw took charge.
This Startup Accelerators of MeitY for Product Innovation, Development and growth (SAMRIDH) program will provide seed funding, mentorship and market access to create 100 unicorns out of the selected startups.
SAMRIDH will create a conducive platform for Indian startups
Ministry of Electronics and IT special secretary Jyoti Arora said that the concept of the Startup Accelerator of MeitY for Product Innovation, Development and Growth (SAMRIDH) is developed on the lines of Silicon Valley based accelerator YCombinator.
The program aims to create a conducive platform for Indian software product startups to enhance their products and secure investments for scaling their business. MeitY Startup Hub (MSH) will implement the program.
The scheme will complement startups that are ready for the acceleration stage
The SAMRIDH program will accelerate 300 startups by providing customer connect, investor, connect, and international expansion opportunities in the next three years.
Also, an investment of up to INR 40 lakh to startups, based on their current valuation and growth stage, will be provided through selected accelerators. It will also facilitate equal matching investment by the accelerator or investor.
The program aims to further the Indian startup growth, which has seen the emergence of 63 unicorns (Startups with over $1 billion valuations), making India the third-largest unicorn hub globally with a total valuation of $168 billion.
The Minister’s take
IT and Telecom Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said that he has mentored over 20 startups earlier and understands the need of mentoring them during the most crucial part of their journey when their idea is getting converted into products.
He said that the lack of funds for startups is not a big issue.
“Lack of getting the idea into a real product or lack of collecting the skill sets which are needed to convert an idea into an enterprise is a bigger challenge for most of the startups. If we can startup in that journey, then probably our value addition will be huge,” Vaishnaw said.