Startup Village to start second phase: Digital incubator for student startups

Startup Village Phase two

Central Government’s Department of Science and Technology has given its nod to Startup Village’s Phase 2 to provide engineering students a completely digital incubation framework.

With this India’s first PPP model incubator launched four years ago in Kerala is all set for a national scale up.
The digital incubator for student startups, SV.CO, will be launched on July 13 at Thiruvananthapuram by Shri Pinarayi Vijayan, Hon’ble Chief Minister and Minister for IT; Mr. Kris Gopalakrishnan, Infosys Co-Founder and Chief Mentor of Startup Village; and Dr H K Mittal, Head of National S&T Entrepreneurship Development Board, Govt. of India.

Gopalakrishnan noted that students, especially from Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities, are deprived of access to the best faculty and mentors from startup nerve centres like Bengaluru or Silicon Valley. “The digital transformation of the incubator would address the problem to a large extent,” he said.

The Digital Incubator, which was built over the last 12 months, has already received more than 1,000 applications from students from across Kerala and towns like Vadodara in Gujarat and Vishakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh in its beta stage.

“It does not matter if you are from a village or a town; you need to have hunger to succeed, and we are looking for you. Visit www.SV.CO/apply and be part of building the future of India,” Startup Village Chairman Sanjay Vijayakumar said, in his message to students.

“Like Lulu Mall to Kochi and Flipkart to the nation, SV 1.0 to Kochi and SV.CO to the nation,” he added.
Sharad Sharma, Co-Founder of industry think tank ISPIRIT, lauded the digital transformation of Startup Village as ‘a game changer’, which will facilitate and accelerate a robust and accessible entrepreneurial ecosystem in the country.

“Earlier, one had to physically travel to get access and knowledge but SV.CO will be a transformative game changer in taking the startup culture to colleges across India,” he pointed out.

Students can form teams and apply at for admission to the digital incubator. Once selected, they will be guided right from selecting an idea to building a prototype and its launch to early customers within six months. Based on whether customers like the product, teams can then graduate to Incubators, Accelerators, raise Angel Funding, and even get acqui-hired as a team or hired to other startups or go for higher studies.

The Phase 2 of Startup Village comes in the wake of Department of Science and Technology approving the project completion report of Phase 1 (2012-15) of the national award winning incubator. Its original mandate was to incubate 48 startups during this period, but it went on to receive an overwhelming 6,000 plus applications. Also, 3,000 new jobs were created by the young startups, which raised more than Rs 45 crore in funding.

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