BENGALURU: The NS Raghavan Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning (NSRCEL) at the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore (IIMB) has announced the selection of 100 women entrepreneurs-in-the-making and their ideas for incubation. The women selected were graduates from the 2018 class of the nationwide ‘Women Startup Programme (WSP)’, supported by Goldman Sachs and the Department of Science and Technology.
The WSP is a first-of-its kind online and classroom-training programme designed to enable aspiring Indian women entrepreneurs to systematically identify and test their business ideas. The WSP provides an in-depth training to nurture and build managerial and entrepreneurial skills in female entrepreneurs through mentorship from industry veterans.
Following the successful 2016 pilot of the WSP in Bengaluru, which saw participation from 1,700 women, the 2018 class of the WSP saw over 6,000 women register from across the country in partnerships with leading academic institutes, including, IIM Visakhapatnam, IIM Indore, IIM Nagpur, IIM Sirmaur, IIM Udaipur, IIE Guwahati and CIIE Ahmedabad.
The WSP class of 2018 comprised diverse participants in the age group of 20 to 50 years, with academic backgrounds spanning from higher secondary degrees to PhDs and diverse professions.“Our pilot WSP showed that in addition to the financial support provided, entrepreneurs need mentoring and networking support. At IIMB, we leveraged our existing mentor pool as well as our alumni base. Given the importance of nurturing women entrepreneurship, we have begun documenting our experiences for the creation of a manual," said Professor Suresh Bhagavatula, faculty in entrepreneurship and chairperson of NSRCEL at IIM.
The selected 100 women entrepreneurs will receive a fellowship of `30,000 per month, in addition to a prototype development fund to help kickstart their ventures. Ten women with the best ideas will be provided with the opportunity to go on a startup study trip to Israel. This year’s incubation class addresses a variety of sectors, including construction, e-commerce and retail, education, healthcare and wellness, finance and manufacturing.