The IIM, Ahmedabad (IIM-A)’s Centre for Innovation, Incubation and Entrepreneurship (CIIE) along with Village Capital has launched its premier Acceleration Program for upcoming startups focused on technology for impact.
The accelerator focuses on for-profit, commercially scalable Indian startups that display a high level of social value in their tech-driven or tech-enabled offerings. The accelerator will focus on technology ventures operating in the mobile/ICT, health, agribusiness, education, sustainability and livelihood solutions verticals.
The program places a heavy emphasis on peer-mentoring and peer-selection of the best ventures within the program. Throughout the program, participating entrepreneurs assess one another, with the 2 top-ranked startups receiving up to $50,000 USD each in investment.
Applications for the program will be accepted till March 18th, 2013 and the program starts from April 11th, 2013 with the first of three four-day workshops being held at CIIE’s facilities at IIM Ahmedabad. There will be two additional intensive four-day sessions in May and June. Ongoing online collaboration, meetings and presentations with expert mentors, investors and sector practitioners will provide additional real-time feedback. Participants would get an opportunity to pitch to leading Indian VCs and international investors at the end of the program.
Identifying the best early-stage startups for investment is a difficult and cost-intensive process for investors. Inspired by the “Village model” of microfinance, the Village Capital solution is to harness the power of peer support and mentoring to build investment-ready companies and to allocate capital through peer selection.
CIIE has been supporting some of the leading social ventures in India. This is one of the several initiatives they plan to introduce in the near future to co-create the next generation of social enterprises.
The accelerator program has seen a strong interest in their offering thus far from a wide spectrum of entrepreneurs. CIIE and Village Capital expect the strong pool of candidates to continue growing through the application period until March 18. The program is being managed jointly by Akash Bansal from CIIE and Patrick Duffy from Village Capital.
More information about the program and the application for interested ventures can be found at www.vilcap-ciie.org.
The Centre for Innovation Incubation and Entrepreneurship (CIIE) is India’s premier business incubator and accelerator located at the India Institute of Management Ahmedabad. Since 2009, CIIE has invested in more than 75 startups, with > 90% survival rate, and leveraging follow-on capital in an 18:1 ratio. Additionally, CIIE has reached out to over 30,000 startups and budding entrepreneurs and has mentored 2000+ startups through the MentorEdge network.
Aarohan Ventures, from CIIE, is an early-stage venture fund focused on building scalable education, healthcare and technology for development entrepreneurial solutions through seed-funding, active mentoring, strategic advisory and hand-holding.
For more information, please see www.ciieindia.org
About Village Capital
Village Capital was founded in 2009 to provide opportunity to high-impact startups. Village Capital runs training programs for entrepreneurs and uses peer support to determine the way investments in such companies are made. Through these ‘cohorts’, entrepreneurs are engaged in a peer evaluation process designed to revise and improve one another’s businesses. At the program’s conclusion, the entrepreneurs vote on one another to receive a pre-committed investment of $50,000 USD.
The peer review methodology enables Village Capital to reach entrepreneurs at greater scale and lower cost than traditional models. Village Capital also provides support and a network to entrepreneurs - over 50% of entrepreneurs who have not received funding from Village Capital directly have received investment elsewhere, and over 90% of participants feel that the program improved their ventures.
To date, Village Capital has served over 250 entrepreneurs from 30 countries through 17 cohorts in the US, UK, Brazil and India, and has recently expanded their reach to include China and Kenya. The Technology for Impact Accelerator with CIIE will be the first sector-focused program for Village Capital in India.
For more information, please visit http://www.vilcap.com.
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