‘Start Up India’ to see biggest gathering of Silicon valley giants & government officials.
By Ruchika Chitravanshi, ET Bureau | 6 Jan, 2016, 10:21 AM IST.
Uber Technologies founder Travis Kalanick, Soft-Bank founder Masayoshi Son along with other prominent names from the world of startups and investing will descend on Delhi later this month in what is billed as the biggest congregation of Silicon Valley bigwigs in India. They are arriving to participate in Start Up India, one of the biggest and signature initiatives of the government this year that is being held on January 16 in Delhi.
The event will see top-level official participation led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The government, keen to revive the economy that is hobbled by unfavourable global and macroeconomic factors, is embracing the world of startups to achieve its mission of boosting economic growth and creating jobs. PM Modi last year gave a clarion call of ‘Start Up India, Stand Up India’, and the government has since tried to project a startup-friendly image.
The Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP) is spearheading the Start Up India event on January 16, which will see a day-long workshop that will culminate in Modi unveiling the government’s action plan for the sector.
Around 2,000 people from the world of startups and venture capital investing are expected to attend the event. “The idea is to see how government will keep itself away (from startups),” said DIPP Secretary Amitabh Kant, adding that manufacturing, IT, agriculture and biotechnology would be some of the sectors that will be the focus of the programme.
“We want to be a country of job creators and not job seekers. We need to inculcate the entrepreneurial talent in our youth and educate them in this area. This programme seeks to achieve that,” he said.
The day-long event will see Googleconducting a session featuring live pitches being made by early stage startups to potential investors. Soft-Bank President Nikesh Arora will interact with the participants on aspects related to funding of startups. The startup community will get to interact with top bureaucrats in key ministries and government departments in a bid to sensitise the officials to the problems entrepreneurs face from India’s officialdom.
While India is in the midst of an unprecedented entrepreneurship boom, with the country now seen as having the third-largest startup ecosystem after the US and UK, a lot of startups choose to register themselves overseas to avoid getting stuck in red tape. ET had reported earlier that a high-level panel of secretaries will vet the proposals for government incentives under the startup policy.
The government, conscious of the fact that universities and college campuses are increasingly becoming hotbeds of entrepreneurial activity, plans to telecast the day’s proceedings live in Indian Institutes of Technology, Indian Institutes of Management, National Institutes of Technology, Indian Institutes of Information Technology and central universities, and to youth groups in over 350 districts.