Speed-dating with venture capitalists has seen nine start-ups being shortlisted up for the next round of funding talks at the recently concluded event WhatNext 2015 organised by iCreate.
In a bid to jump start seed funding and capital for entrepreneurs, Gujarat government supported incubation institute iCreate had been looking to engage start-ups with angel investors and venture capital (VC) players at its annual event WhatNext 2015.
WhatNext is the flagship annual event organized by iCreate to provide a platform for participants to holistically explore trends in emerging technologies, engage with successful entrepreneurs and experts, interact with investors, and network.
In its second edition this year, for the first time the event saw participation from VC firms such as Acumen PE Fund, Mumbai Angels, Ryerson Futures and GVFL Limited. The event saw around 26 applications for speed-dating with VC firms wherein nine were shortlisted. Start-ups that participated in speed-dating with investors included Lithe Technologies Pvt. Ltd., PlexusMD, Locriti Ltd., Brain TecLabs Pte.Ltd., Skedule and PurpleDocs, among others.
On the other hand, the event also saw presentations by start-ups to a panel of angel investors including Pratul Shroff of eInfochips, Rakesh Patel of Space-O Technologies, Indrajeet Mitra of Gateway Group, Chirag Patel of Net4Nuts, Munir Thakor of Silicon Computech; and Bhavin Shah of Equirus Securities. While 16 applications were received for the panel-presentation, about 10 were shortlisted by the investors.
Start-ups for panel presentation included My Radio, Sweet InBox, eiTRA, Divya Technologies, PlayLab and Almamapper, among others.
Further, start-ups also showcased their work demonstrated under the demo-day session at WhatNext 2015 of iCreate to the demo-day chair HK Mittal, advisor, member secretary at National Science and Technology Enterpreneurship Development Board (NSTEDB). Start-ups for Demo-day included Bridgedots Techservices Pvt. Ltd., AniMad, WEPaint, Go-Spa-Up, Stellar and TAXIMO, among others.
The event also saw launch of an open-source-open-content portal SKILL UP INDIA, a project initiated by Code For India's Gujarat Chapter in partnership with iCreate and USIBC Education Foundation. The open-source and open-content portal will offer India's youth free online courses in subjects ranging from technology to business management and select job-related skills.
The portal aims to skill youth throughout India via open courseware from top universities worldwide as well as open courseware from Indian corporates which will be easily accessible free of cost. Partnerships with leading organizations will play a role to broaden its reach.
"Skilling up India's youth - a huge percentage of our population is under 35 - will take a combination of partnerships with leading organizations and the use of the newest education technologies. SKILL UP INDIA is part of the new movement in India to help our youth with free access to high quality education through online and mobile courses essential to re-focus our workforce to meet the demands of a global economy," said Karl Mehta, founder of Code For India and CEO of Silicon Valley educational technology company EdCast.