In order to support future graduates and encourage entrepreneurship at college level, IIT Roorkee and Oxigen wallet Founder Pramod Saxena have partnered to launch a startup accelerator called Aarambh Ventures. IIT Roorkee will provide the required infrastructure and space whereas Pramod Saxena will connect the startups with investors and experts.
Both parties have signed an MoU with equal partnership. The accelerator will function in two phases. During the first phase, an idea lab will be set up in IIT Roorkee where affiliated alumni, students and faculty having product ideas can brainstorm and develop them further.
The institute will offer infrastructure and other tech resources to help them in this phase. In the second phase, selected ideas will become a part of a 16 week long accelerator program.
This program will take place outside the campus of IIT Roorkee in Greater Noida. Aarambh Venture aims to select close to 100 ventures in the next two years for its accelerator program. It expects to develop 20% of these ventures into successful and viable business ventures with funding.
The program will particularly focus on startups in fin tech, mobile internet and clean energy segments such as those wprkin on products like hybrid and electric cars. Pramod Saxena, who is also an alumnus of IIT Roorkee said,
We are expecting to see a lot of SaaS, artificial intelligence and big data-oriented platforms integrated into these startups. The focus will be on promoting startups that are using smart algorithms to create cost-efficient products.
Main objective of this partnership is to help students develop their ideas in ways that are customer-centered and market-relevant.
They may have ideas that need a bit more work or are looking to bounce the idea off to experts. Either way, Idea Lab will provide ways to push their thinking further.
said Prof. Pradipta Banerji, Director, IIT Roorkee. He adds,
Our goal is to have 100 entrepreneurs coming out of this Idea Lab in next three years. We are extremely supportive of Aarmabh Ventures’ efforts to develop ideation space for IIT Roorkee’s budding entrepreneurs.
Aarambh Ventures has partnered with several investors and high net worth individuals to give funding support to successful startups out of its accelerator program. Some of these investors include prominent names such as LetsVenture, Unitus Seed Fund and Ivy Cap Ventures.
Initially, the accelerator will only be open to IIT Roorkee students, alumni, and faculty. However, Saxena said that they would also look to invite outside applications and startups from other IITs in future.