Commerce & Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman launched the Startup India Virtual Hub, an online platform for all stakeholders of the entrepreneurial ecosystem in India to discover, connect and engage with each other.
Nirmala Sitharaman mentioned that Startup India Virtual Hub is an effort to create a marketplace where all the stakeholders can interact, exchange knowledge, and enable each other to grow. It will streamline the lifecycle of existing and potential startups, helping them access the right resources at the right time. She also encouraged all entrepreneurs in India to utilize this portal and all enabling stakeholders to contribute to the platform as much as possible. The minister also announced a new initiative, wherein a Startup exchange program amongst the SAARC nations would be organized.
The portal will host startups, investors, funds, mentors, academia, incubators, accelerators, corporates, government bodies and more. The hub attempts to solve the problem of information asymmetry and lack of access to knowledge, tools, &experts, especially in the nascent ecosystems across Tier II and III towns.
The virtual hub is a dynamic & interactive platform that will facilitate learning & development, networking, mentorship, funding, etc. for startups. The basic principle behind developing this platform is to aggregate different offerings of the ecosystem and enable discovery by the right audience. Startup India Hub has partnered with various organizations to on-board entrepreneurs & investors, as well as build knowledge modules. To ensure accessibility across various platforms, dedicated Apps are also available on both Android and iOS.
India is the third largest startup ecosystem around the globe, with 3-4 startups commencing every day. The hub will act as a nodal platform and will enable users to connect with ecosystem stakeholders, access free learning resources, tools & templates on legal, HR, accounting & regulatory issues and discussion forums. The hub has also aggregated over 50 relevant government schemes/programmes. In the next phase, the platform will also aggregate schemes available across various state governments. To provide a better user experience, the platform has been enabled to build smart intelligence along with chatbots to automatically collate, update information and respond to queries.
The launch event of the hub was kickstarted by a panel discussion on ‘Navigating the Startup Landscape’ with a representative from each of the startup, investor, incubator, accelerator, and mentor communities. The discussion was followed by an address by Ramesh Abhishek Secretary, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion who made a presentation on various initiatives taken up under the Startup India Initiative.
Joint Secretary, Rajiv Aggarwal requested all the members of the ecosystem to register on the hub.