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Govt sets up hub for connecting mentors and investors to startups from smaller cities


To promote entrepreneurship across India, the government has set up a platform that will help startups connect with right talents, investors and mentors.

The platform, which will act as a hub for startups, will be officially made public by IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad this week, said an ET report.

The Ministry of Electronics and IT (Meity) has also brought in entrepreneur Deepak Agarwal to lead the team.

The platform will connect startups from smaller or rural parts of India to mentor and investors, said a govt official. It will give startups web space to showcase their enterprise, connect to incubation centres, seek guidance from mentors, benefit from government schemes, access centres of excellence, and avail R&D facilities and labs.

The govt has partnered with Qualcomm, HSBC, the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) for the initiative. Entrackr queries seeking confirmation and more info on the development to  Meity is yet to receive response.

At present, India has about 23,252 DPIIT registered startups in the country. Over 20% of the 20,000 startups are said to be in smaller towns. The govt plans to take the number to 50,000 in the next five years.

In the last couple of years, the govt has announced steps to expedite the process to become one of the biggest hubs for startups.

The significant factors behind the rise in numbers of startups are the growth of VC industry and Startup India program, according to the KPMG report.

In the last few years, passion for starting up has reached out to tier-II and tier-III cities like Kochi, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Lucknow, Indore, Ranchi, and Patna, it added.

However, time and again there have been concerns raised by startups related to ease of doing the business, painful process for supportive business funds, Angel Tax and lack of a good ecosystem for startups to flourish.

The govt missing its startups’ allocation target is also one of the major concerns.

Earlier, the Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) had failed to meet its target for Startup India Fund of Funds, which was Rs 3,500 Cr, to venture capital firms for FY19.

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