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#StartupIndia launch with PM Modi: What the ecosystem expects
February 09,2016

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Startup India, Standup India’ initiative is no less than a rock concert in its own. Scheduled for 16th January, the event has seen a massive response for the coveted 1,500 passes, with about 1 lakh participants for the same. That is a ratio of 1:0.015 which means everyone who applied stood a chance of just 1.5% to be a part of this event which is being waited upon with bated breath by the startup community!

And why not? The event is supposed to be a watermark event in 2016 as PM Modi is expected to launch a slew of reforms aimed at revolutionising the Indian startup ecosystem and will unveil the Startup Action Plan. Be it taxation policies or regulatory approval or increase in FDI or infrastructural support, Indian startup founders and investors and mentors, all want some clarity, some assurance, some support, and a lot of relief from the government to catapult the nation into the league of the best startup nations in the world.

Besides entrepreneurs, industry veterans like Mukesh and Anil Ambani, Tata group chairman Cyrus Mistry, Bharti’s Sunil Mittal and Aditya Birla Group’s Kumar Birla will also be attending the event. The attendees would also get a chance to hear from Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son, who plans to invest $20 Bn in solar projects in India, Travis Kalanick (founder, Uber) and WeWork (founder, Adam Neumann).

Apart from them, around 40 high-profile Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and angel investors have also been invited as special guests. There is also a possibility that Google’s Launchpad Accelerator programme could be part of this event, wherein one early-stage startup will be shortlisted from a panel of five.

Nitin Sharma, Principal at Lightbox VC feels that though has been a massive expansion in the VC funding ecosystem, not much risk capital is available for startups truly innovating in terms of core technology, hardware or India-specific problems without global parallels. He hoped that the initiative provides a big boost to that in conjunction with academia. Says Nitin, “ For me, digitizing of education on a massive scale is the biggest revolution in the making, which can also make the startup revolution more universal and inclusive, and pay rich dividends in enhancing our talent pool.” Read more here.

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