Atal Incubation Centre-BIMTECH: Read How This Incubation Centre Is Setting Up Startups For Success
Greater Noida (06/01/2022): The Government of India started the Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) at NITI Aayog in 2018. The overarching purpose of this Mission was to promote a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship in India. The Government realized that there is a need to create world class incubation facilities across various parts of India with suitable physical infrastructure in terms of capital equipment and operating facilities, coupled with the availability of sectoral experts for mentoring the start-ups, business planning support, access to seed capital, industry partners, trainings and other relevant components required for encouraging innovative start-ups. Accordingly, AIM supported the establishment of Atal Incubation Centres (AICs) that would nurture innovative start-up businesses in their pursuit to become scalable and sustainable enterprises. The scheme is known as Atal Incubation Centre.
In the first year of its operation AIM selected 10 applicants from all over the country for providing the grant-in-aid for setting up Atal Incubation Centres. BIMTECH, Greater Noida was one of the 10 shortlisted applicants where a sprawling incubation centre was set-up in Knowledge park-III.
Atal Incubation Centre- BIMTECH, Greater Noida
AIC, BIMTECH boasts an unparalleled infrastructure and envious facilities. Designed in a very contemporary style, the center has a board room, meeting hall, conference hall, networking zone, seminar space, and formal and informal work set-up among other things.
The centre is well connected to Delhi-Noida through expressway and also offers full residential facilities to its incubatees. It has 24*7 operational infrastructures with food and lodging facilities.
The purpose of setting up Atal Incubation Centre is to assist the incubatees in creating a sustainable, scalable & profitable business model as well as to provide physical infrastructure and value-added support services. AIC @ BIMTECH is focusing on creating a strong network of mentors who would provide sector-specific knowledge & real-world practical guidance.
Speaking to Ten News, Dr .Abha Rishi, CEO, Atal Incubation Centre-BIMTECH informed us bout the four programmes that are being offered at AIC-BIMTECH.
“The first programme is the Khoj Program, it’s the initiation stage, a stage where you just have an Idea but you don’t have anything else in it, So for that we have Khoj Program. Then for protoyping stage we have the Prarambh program. Next, we have Gurukul program, the incubation stage, when you actually incubate, start your revenues, have your go-to market strategies done etc. and the last is Udaan program which helps startups secure funding,” she said.
When asked about what AIC looks for in startups , Dr Abha said, “We receive more than 300-400 applications for around 15 seats, our team looks for just two major things in the initial stage for the khoj program. First is Commitment- it doesn’t matter if your Idea is great or just good if you really have the commitment to really work on your adventure, we will make sure that your idea reaches a venture stage and also become successful.
The second thing that we look at is the team, whether the team has got the competencies to follow on a Idea or not.”
“Moreover, each programme have their own selection criteria but for the ideation level these are the only two criteria that we look for,” added Dr Abha.
When asked about how does AIC-BIMTECH ensures that startups survive and thrive, in the context that 95% of all startups fail within first 5 years, Dr Abha said, “We have a 76% survival rate on a three year ratio that means all our startups have survived for more than three years & 76% is because of Covid situation otherwise we have a much higher survival rate.”
Moreover, for startups to survive & thrive, we at AIC-BIMTECH make sure that you do what is required, we have regular meetings with our startups, we sit along & work on different metrics, emphasing on what they are gonna work on in the coming 6 months or over a period of year. So, when you will be knowing what to focus on in a period of time that’ll make sure that you keep your focus on those things only.
She added, ”One of the major reasons that major startups fail is that they go all-over the place. They do not focus on the main things that needs to be done.”
Talking about the benefits of Khoj, the entry level program, Dr Abha said, “This program is completely free. We do not charge any fees, we do not take any equity, not only that, we offer people who come on board free benefits of something like 8.2 Crores.”
She said, ”We have around 19-20 partners who are working along with us in this program. Other then this, in this Khoj program we also offer free co-working & co-living, we bring in curated people who can help with your business & not just that we have mentors be it- Academic, corporate & Industry & our alumni mentor are also there.”
Startup India Seed Fund Scheme
To boost the Startup ecosystem in India, Govt of India launched the Startup India Seed Fund Scheme last year. Under this scheme, AIC-BIMTECH is one of the incubators which is eligible to provide startups with up to Rs 20 lakhs for validation of Proof of Concept, prototype development, product trials.
Moreover, up to Rs 50 lakhs is provided to the startups for market entry, commercialization, or scaling up through convertible debentures or debt-linked instruments
Sharing details about this scheme, Anmol Chaturvedi from AIC-BIMTECH said, “Startups should visit the scheme dashboard, there they can apply by filling the details & than they have to specify three incubators based on the preference. After submission, the three incubators will receive the applications.”
When asked about how the incubators filter the applications, he said, “All incubators are doing things a bit differently, at first we evaluate all the pitch text than shortlist the more promising ones. In the next round, we bring them to pitch before AIC-BIMTECH team. Afterwards, we shortlist few & bring the startups before the incubator’s seed management committee. After the pitching, the finalist are actually considered for funding.”
“Once we have invested in startups, we believe in these startups and we want them to succeed; so we will help them in any way possible, which can help these startups do well,” added Anmol Chaturvedi,
During our visit, we also spoke to Keshav Jha, one of the most successful incubatees of AIC-BIMTECH.
When asked about how this program helped to grow his startup, he said, “Education is the tool & we are being educated here for three months by industry experts which boosts up our confidence.”
“Earlier we used to seek investors all the time, through AIC’s program we learnt about how, even as startups, we have to be picky with our investors, we need to select the right investor for us – the investors with big vision,” he added.
He rated the program as a 9.5/ 10 on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the highest.