Mumbai-based engineering college Vivekanand Education Society's Institute of Technology (VESIT) is setting up an incubation centre to boost entrepreneurship, Lavin Mirchandani, an alumnus of the institute and president of the college's entrepreneurship cell informed Techcircle.in. The centre is being setup with the help of government and university grants and college trustees.
"The college needs an incubator parallel to the campus placement cell as a lot of students are aspiring to become entrepreneurs. With the startup and the venture investment system moving towards a maturity phase it is imperative that source of ideas (students) that converge into startups is tapped right at the source (institutions) and nurtured by the ecosystem at the institutions. We have the infrastructure in place but need to create a system around running an incubation centre. We're looking for a CEO and will launch the centre early next year," said Mirchandani.
"PM Narendra Modi has come out with interesting plans to fund such incubations including a Rs 10,000 crore fund to back early stage companies. We are evaluating some of these grants besides support from the college trust," he added.
Some of the alumni who are facilitating the initiative include entrepreneurs and angel investors like Vijay Talreja, also the president of VESIT alumni association; Ajeet Khurana, CEO of SINE IITB; and Mirchandani, among others. The alumni team is also actively involved in developing startup ecosystem in the college with support from industry venterans including Harley Finkelstein, chief platform officer, Shopify; Zishaan Hayath from Powai Lake Ventures; and Milap Shah, co-founder, PrintStop.
The college's alumni association already runs several programmes and contests every month to ensure student-industry connect. Some of the companies from the campus include Notemybook.in, a platform for selling second hand books; Digital stethoscope that amplifies heart beat on any device; and music syncing app Sync etc. These companies have also been receiving informal mentoring and funding (for kick-starting) from the college trust.