InstaOffice in Gujarat – the Upcoming State of Startups

Gujarat as a state, is home to some of the most industrious and business savvy populace. In fact, Gujarat has 29 of the top 500 Indian corporates. Why is it that despite this, the stats has had few successful startups? Did tech-based entrepreneurship take a backseat when compared to large manufacturing and trading hubs in Gujarat?

Gujarat Startups – What was missing before?

Before, the one factor that was holding back growth for Gujarat-based startups was the founders’ unwillingness to part away with equity to raise money. Usually, Gujarati entrepreneurs were wary about diluting their equity, which was never the case in other startup hubs. Also, mindset of having a Plan-B for the business could have also be a hindrance in the entire process of making a startup work. The level of aggression that a startup hub needs was lacking in some of Gujarat-based startups because of the presence of this Plan-B.

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Itilite – Helping Companies and Employees save on Travel!

Congratulations to our member Itilite for securing funding from Matrix and other partners!

Mayank and Anish are colleagues from Myntra and Mckinsey. While Mayank is a product of IIM Ahmedabad and IIT Delhi Anish is from IIM Lucknow and IIT Kharagpur. “After finishing my engineering from IIT Delhi and MBA from IIM-Ahmedabad, I worked at McKinsey for a long time. It was during my time as head of product development that I met my Co-founder. We help companies create and implement a travel rewards program. Our USP is that we help companies reduce their travel cost, and we help travelers earn attractive rewards for choosing cost conscious travel options.”

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Introducing Amit Mahajan from Pura Stays

“Wherever you go, travel becomes a part of you somehow.” – Anita Desai

ravel has taken up a crucial role in our lives. People aren’t just travelling annually anymore. Whether you need to get away from the monotony of life, learn about new cultures, or just find yourself – travel makes possible, giving you a greater sense of your being and helping you connect with the diversity around. Where you stay is an important part of the experience, and there could often be times when you’re willing to shell out some extra money but do not find stay options worth your spend.

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Founder of 2, and a Mentor to 1 – Does Devendra Agarwal get 25 hours in a day?

Productivity is a train we are always chasing. We feel we’re close and then bam, the day ends.  It turns out that a large part of being productive lies in the simplest of things like discipline.

 Devendra Agrawal, who is running two startups – InstaOffice and Dexter Capital Advisors is married to an entrepreneur, Anuradha Agarwal (Founder, Multibhashi)  and lives with his two kids in Bangalore, which is like managing 5 start-ups. What’s more, he never misses a WhatsApp text (you can test it!) and finds time to network and host multiple meetups in Bangalore. Not to mention, he is always present in our team parties and never misses the fun!

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Introducing Neha from Foreign Wedding Planners

ecember brings wedding bells along, and we decided to introduce our member Neha Mehrotra to our community.

imagesNeha is the founder of Foreign Wedding Planners – look it up on Google, and you’d find it flooded with snapshots of her work!

Until a few months ago, she has been organizing amazing weddings single-handedly. She comes from a very interesting background, and we couldn’t be more excited to be sharing her story!

Background

A daughter of an army officer, Neha has always been used to travelling and exploring different cultures – which has made her quite independent and flexible. Her father’s final posting was in Delhi, which made her stay back even after he retired and went back to Lucknow, where she is originally from.w

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StartUp News – Dec 11th

The startup world has no dearth when it comes to new news! Read on on to find out the headlines of today!

  • Biotechnology Startup Clensta International Raises Pre-Series A Round at Rs 25 Cr Valuation –goo.gl/Ap5seq
  • Online tea brand Vahdam Teas has raised $1.4M (Rs 9 Cr) in a round of funding led by VC firm Fireside Venturesgoo.gl/FbMxLV
  • Express Bike Works – EBW Expands Footprint in Kerala – goo.gl/PAuDT1
    German logistics company Deutsche Post DHL has announced plans to startup operations in India and will work with parent DPDHL’s Blue Dartservice in order to have its own presence here.
  • Google targets small merchants, stores to push payment arm Tez
  • FedEx Express, the world’s largest express transportation company and a subsidiary of FedEx Corp., has launched FedEx Delivery Manager in India.
  • Houseome.com, a Mumbai based start-up offering end-to-end Interior Home Designing solutions has received an undisclosed investment from an Angel Investor making the total capital raised to INR 50 Lakh.
  • Snapdeal, has appointed Saurabh Jalan, a representative from investor SoftBank, as an additional director at the firm. Meanwhile, Lydia Jett, a SoftBank executive and director at Snapdeal, resigned from the e-commerce firm’s board.
  • Meet The 6 Startups That Showcased In Rajasthan DigiFest 2017 – Blueprint, Xane.ai, SRJNAToRootsNextsky Technologies & Bodhi
  • Hero Electric is mulling over setting up multiple assembly plants to meet its target of increasing sales by ten-fold in the next five years, including enhancing exports.

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StartUp News – Dec 8th

The startup world has no dearth when it comes to new news! Read on on to find out the headlines of today!

  • Vehicle management startup LocoNav has raised $3.42M (Rs 22 CR) Series A funding from Sequoia Capital India and angel investor, Prateek Sharma, reported Inc42.
  • The/Nudge Foundation has received a grant worth $250,000 (Rs 1.6 crore) from The Rockefeller Foundation to expand its operations across India.
  • Dairy supply chain startup MilkLane has raised Rs 27 crore ($4.2 million) in a round was led by Switzerland-based investment firm Pioneering Ventures, American dairy company Schreiber Foods and some ultra high net-worth families.
  • Fast moving consumer goods major Emami Ltd is acquiring acquire 30 percent stake in Helios Lifestyle, which owns male grooming brand ‘The Man Company’, for an undisclosed amount.
  • Ola has roped in PayU India co-founder Nitin Gupta as CEO of OlaMoney
    Policybazaar in talks with bankers for a $1.5 billion IPO valuation
  • Blacksoil’s NBFC arm, Blacksoil Capital, has invested Rs 15 crores in the US-focused online fashion retailer eShakti.com which is backed by IDG & IvyCap Ventures.
  • German software giant SAP SE, which earlier this year launched a global $35 million fund to invest in tech startups, plans to increase its investments in 2018 and aims to close nearly twice the number of deals it signed in 2017.
  • ICICI Bank has launched a digital service to allow customers to open a public provident fund (PPF) account online, eliminating the need for furnishing paper documents.

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StartUp News – Dec 7th

The startup world has no dearth when it comes to new news! Read on on to find out the headlines of today!

  • Ahmedabad-based edutech firm AlmaMapper Technologies has acquired another recruitment and assessment solutions firm iTeknika in a cash and share swap deal.
  • Mountain Trail Foods Pvt. Ltd, which owns the Chai Point chain of tea stores, plans to raise more than $10 million in a Series C round of funding.
  • The National Stock Exchange (NSE) on Tuesday said it would facilitate start-ups to mobilise funds through a public issue even in growth stages.
  • Alibaba all set to put $300 million in BigBasket. The deal, which has been in the works for nearly six months, is expected to give the Bengaluru-based company a post-money valuation of about $850 million. The Alibaba-backed online retailer Paytm Mall is also likely to invest as a part of the $300-million round depending on the final structure of the deal, reported ET.
  • One97 Communications, the entity that runs financial services platform Paytm, has appointed SoftBank’s Kabir Misra as a director on its board.
    Premium fashion and lifestyle e-tailer Label Corp, which runs The Label Life.com, has raised Rs 20 crore from Kalpavriksha, the Rs 500 crore private equity arm of financial services group Centrum.
  • Eight Startups Graduate from Target Accelerator Program’s Fifth Batch – Cogknit, Cognitifai, Hyperworks, jumper.ai, Light Information Systems, Moonraft Innovation LabsStreamoid TechnologiesVPhrase
  • TempoGO wins Startup-O global venture competition, raises Seed Funding of $1.35 million
  • Digital SME lending platform FlexiLoans Technologies has raised an institutional debt funding of about $7M (Rs 45 Cr) from Financial Institution(s).
  • Amazon NV Holdings (investment arm of Amazon.com), has filed an application with the Competition Commission of India (CCI) to acquire 5% minority, non-controlling stake in departmental store chain Shoppers Stop.
  • Two wheeler maker TVS Motor Company has acquired 14.78% stake in Bengaluru-based electric vehicle startup Ultraviolette Automotive Pvt. Ltd.
  • Vehicle management startup LocoNav has raised $3.42M (Rs 22 CR) Series A funding from Sequoia Capital India and angel investor, Prateek Sharma, reported Inc42.

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Startup News – 5th Dec

startup News for The Day!

  • Google led Rs 80 Cr series B round in Bengaluru hyper local startup Dunzoit
  • Facebook is launching a messaging app for kids under 13 to chat with their parents and with friends approved by their parents.
  • Former CEO of CCD (Café Coffee Day) Naresh Malhotra is creating an early-stage startup family fund of Rs 50 crore ($7.8 million).
  • Shalabh Seth has resigned less than a year after joining Ola as chief executive of its cab leasing business
  • Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali to diversify into solar power business. Patanjali Ayurved plans to invest Rs100 crore for manufacturing solar power equipment, MD Acharya Balkrishna says.
  • Paytm Payments Bank has committed Rs3,000 crore over the next three years to expand offline distribution network by allowing trusted local partners to act as potential cash-in and cash-out points, it said in a statement.
  • Facebook in partnership with T-Hub Hyderabad will work with VR-focused startups.
    Amazon Launchpad, the one-year-old global startup initiative of US-based Amazon.com Inc, has joined hands with hardware accelerator HAX and crowdfunding community Kickstarter to launch a startup challenge in India.
  • Bicycle sharing startup MoBycy has raised $500,000 (Rs 3.2 crore) in a seed round from a US-based angel investor.
  • Mirc Electronics Ltd, which makes electronics products under Onidaand IGO brands, is raising nearly Rs 144 crore ($22 million) in a round led by ace stock market investor Ashish Kacholia.

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Startup News For The Day : December 4th

Here are #StartupDidi’s main gossip for the day:

  • Rentickle, furniture rental startup, has raised $4M in a funding round led by Singapore-headquartered VC ThinKuvate and CX Partners Chairman Ajay Relan.
  • Home rental startup NestAway has reportedly raised $50 million from UC-RNT Fund, a joint investment platform of Ratan Tata’s RNT Associates and the University of California, reported TOI.
  • Noida-based mobile phone manufacturer Lava (Lava Mobiles) is raising $30 million from an affiliate of state-backed Chinese technology group Tsinghua Holdings, reported ET.
  • Kerala Startup Mission is launching a two-year structured incubation programme for startups stitching together various government schemes available for them.
  • Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje has announced a special fund for startups led by women so as to encourage them as entrepreneurs.
  • Kishore Biyani, who recently unveiled plans to make Future Group Asia’s largest integrated consumer company, also aims for the logistics arm to be one of the world’s top 10 supply chain solutions providers.
  • New York-headquartered collaborative workspace major WeWork’s India arm has picked up nearly 1.7 lakh sq ft office space on lease in two separate transactions in Mumbai’s Andheri and Vikhroli suburb, reported ET.
  • Gaana.com, India’s favorite music app, announced that it has crossed 50 million monthly active users to become the first music streaming app to achieve this milestone.
  • Paytm plans to invest up to $2.5 Billion to grow its nascent online shopping portal business within three to five years
  •  Ola has introduced yet another new mode of transportation for its users — Ola Pedal, a bicycle sharing service.

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Startup News For The Day : November 30th

Here are #StartupDidi’s main gossip for the day:

  • French technology consultancy company Altran Technologies has signed a definitive agreement to acquire design and engineering services firm Aricent from a group of investors led by KKR, for a total enterprise value of $2 billion in an all-cash transaction.
  • NITI Aayog is setting up a cell focused on offering financial support and mentorship to women entrepreneurs, reported ET.
  • Authority of India (UIDAI) has ordered an investigation against Bharti Airtel for alleged violations of the Aadhaar Act and is threatening to slap a financial penalty for opening Airtel Payments Bank accounts of customers surreptitiously while carrying out Aadhaar verification of their mobile numbers, reported ET.
  • Online lender KrazyBee is rapidly expanding its business in Tamil Nadu with an aim to solve unique needs of the student community.
  • Online gaming company Rummy Passion Raises $3.75M from UK Listed Company.
  • Arun Jaitley, Union Minster of Finance, formally inaugurated Paytm Payments Bank, marking a major milestone in the history of India’s financial services sector.
  • All India Muslim Business & Startup Network Launched to Inspire Entrepreneurship among Muslim Entrepreneurs
  •  Amazon India to Empower Women Entrepreneurs with the Launch of ‘Amazon Saheli’ 
  • Matrix Backed Lifestyle Brand Chumbak Raises Rs 85 Cr
  • Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar formally launched the Jai Kisaan App, a mobile solution from Adventz Group, a conglomerate of agriculture, engineering and infrastructure, real estate, consumer durables and services companies – goo.gl/DbivKQ
  • Election Commission and Facebook Launch Voter Registration Campaign for First Time Voters
  • Droom – India’s Most Trusted Motorplace Announces Winners of B-Plan Competition: IIT Roorkee Wins Top Laurels
  • TiE Global, U.S. Embassy, New Delhi and Consulates Partner to Empower Women Entrepreneurs by Launching AIRSWEEE 2.0

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Curating Indie Cinema with PickUrFlick

hen you talk to people, you start with leveraging a common ground – be it their favourite game or their favourite movie. Films and entertainment are something which definitely excite everyone, whether you talk to a friend, potential employee or an investor. This week, we introduce you to one of our members, Abhishek Sinha, who is running a company called PickUrFlick. His platform curates Indie Cinema from all around the world.

thediplomat.com-indiemovie-553x360Putting everything together

His journey started not quite where we expected – he is an engineering graduate with an MBA in marketing, who went on to work in Sales and Marketing in the construction industry!

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Startup News For The Day : November 29th

Here are #StartupDidi’s main gossip for the day:

SoftBank eyes $200M-$250M investment in foodtech startup, Swiggy.
Connected Transport Incubator Autonebula has secured $7M SEBI approved funding.
Myntra is likely to acquire a stake in Mumbai-based women-focused online fashion platform 20Dresses.com, reported VCCircle.
Flipkart has reportedly appointed Ravi Garikipati, its chief technology officer, as head of fin-tech department.
B2B logistics startup BlackBuck, which is run by Zinka Logistics Solutions Pvt. Ltd, has appointed Dinesh Ajmera as chief technology officer.
Former TPG Growth adviser Anjali Bansal joins Delhivery board, reported VCCircle.
McAfee and Skyhigh Networks announced a definitive agreement to combine businesses, with McAfee acquiring Skyhigh Networks for an undisclosed amount.
Impact investor Lok Capital, which is looking to close its Fund III at $90-100 million in the next three to four months has already deployed about 60% of the capital raised so far in the first 18 months of the fund, reported ET.
Online marketplace Paytm Mall has held initial talks with Japanese investment giant SoftBank for leading a $500-600 million financing round, reported TOI.

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Startup News For The Day : November 28th

Here are #StartupDidi’s main gossip for the day:

  • Gul Panag co-founded Mobiefit raised a pre Series A funding of $1.35 Million (Rs 8.85 Crore) led by NB Ventures of Dubai with co-investment from MediAssist.
  • Matrix Partners India and Accel India have co–led the first round of institutional investment in Stanza Living, a company focusing on the student accommodation space.
  • Government of India has announced that users will be allowed to pay for the charging of Electric Vehicles through digital payments solutions as BHIM app and Bharat QR Code, reported Inc42.
  •  India’s leading background screening company AuthBridge today announced the launch of VerifyMySchool, a one-stop platform for schools to create a safe environment for students by screening their staff (teachers, administration, support and blue collar).
  • Flipkart has tweaked its seller policy by lowering commission by 5% for items priced below Rs 300 across many categories.
  • Kickstarter, one of the largest crowdfunding platform in the world is entering India in association with Amazon Launchpad and HAX. Together, the three global entities will launch Startup C-Cube, a multi-level challenge for Indian start-ups that flags off in Bangalore on the 5th of December 2017.

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Startup News For The Day : November 27th

Here are #StartupDidi’s main gossip for the day:

  • Flipkart founders Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal and three employees of the company have been booked for allegedly cheating a businessman of Rs 9.96 crore by not clearing the dues the company owed him towards 12,500 laptops he had supplied, reported TOI.
  • Sachin Tendulkar-backed sports-based entertainment company Smaaash Raises Rs 25 Cr
  • Silicon Valley-based VC firm Fenox Venture Capital is looking to expand its presence in Asia by launching special investment funds for two of the largest countries in the region–India and China, reported DealStreetAsia.
  • State Bank of India has announced plans to launch an omni-digital platform called YONO (You Only Need One), a one-stop solution for all of the customer’s needs related to banking and lifestyle products/services.
  • Quikr has recently floated a pilot in hyperlocal fulfilment domain on a very small scale in select areas of North Bengaluru.
  • Uber is looking to step up investments in India, build out more India-specific and global innovations through its presence in the country, reported LiveMint.
  • Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology, Government of India(MeitY), in line with PM Narendra Modi’s Digital India initiative, has launched the egovernance mobile app UMANG – Unified Mobile Application for New-Age Governance.
  • Private equity firm Everstone Group, through its platform Everlife, has acquired Malaysia’s Chemopharm Sdn Bhd, a provider of products and services to laboratory, research and medical facilities in South-East Asia.
  • Zoomcar ties up with Mahindra Electric for e-vehicle in Hyderabad
    8. Agri Tech Startup KrishiHub Raises Seed Funding from IIT Kanpur INVENT Accelerator and Villgro Innovation Fund
  • My Awfis Launches Its Newest Premium Co-working Centre in BKC, Mumbai
    Hyderabad based Serial entrepreneur Dr. Srinubabu has acquired Canada based scientific medical informatics Pulsus Group Inc, foraying into big scientific, medical informatics market worldwide for an undisclosed amount.
  • He also announced PULSUS will expand in India with 2 new centers – Chennai and Gurgaon in next few months
    IoT-driven transportation startup TempoGO has raised $250,000 (about Rs 1.6 crore)

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Startup News For The Day : November 24th

Here are #StartupDidi’s main gossip for the day:

  • Flipkart may soon start selling insurance products on its financial marketplace.State Bank of India has announced plans to launch an omni-digital platform called YONO (You Only Need One), a one-stop solution for all of the customer’s needs related to banking and lifestyle products/services.
  • Quikr has recently floated a pilot in hyperlocal fulfilment domain on a very small scale in select areas of North Bengaluru.
  • Uber is looking to step up investments in India, build out more India-specific and global innovations through its presence in the country, reported LiveMint.
  • Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology, Government of India(MeitY), in line with PM Narendra Modi’s Digital India initiative, has launched the egovernance mobile app UMANG – Unified Mobile Application for New-Age Governance.
  • Private equity firm Everstone Group, through its platform Everlife, has acquired Malaysia’s Chemopharm Sdn Bhd, a provider of products and services to laboratory, research and medical facilities in South-East Asia.
  • Zoomcar ties up with Mahindra Electric for e-vehicle in Hyderabad
  • Agri Tech Startup KrishiHub Raises Seed Funding from IIT Kanpur INVENT Accelerator and Villgro Innovation Fund
  • Hyderabad based Serial entrepreneur Dr. Srinubabu has acquired Canada based scientific medical informatics Pulsus Group Inc, foraying into big scientific, medical informatics market worldwide for an undisclosed amount.

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5 things to do when you’re bored at work

We’ve all been there, bored out of our minds at work. Before you pull the plug on it, or your life, here are some suggestions to pass the time and clear your head.

Organizing of Mails:

If you haven’t done this in a while, then it our personal suggestion that you begin to adjust all mails. There are a whole lot of mails in your box. While some are important, there are some that are completely irrelevant. So make sure you don’t put them together. Check your spam folder also. Sometimes important emails end up there. Some people tend to save all personal emails in one folder so that they can go through stuff when the need arises. Also make it a point to give feedback on the projects you have already received. Check all emails you saved for “later”.

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Startup News For The Day : November 23rd

Here are #StartupDidi’s main gossip for the day:

  • Aashish Kamat has resigned as the chief executive officer of Swiss banking giant UBS’s India operations
  • Online hotel booking startup MiStay raises seed funding
  • FreshMenu has appointed former Snapdeal executive Pradeep Desai as chief business and technology officer.
  • Bangalore-based TAO Automation Services Pvt. Ltd, which runs an eponymous machine learning startup, has raised seed funding from Mohandas Pai-backed early-stage venture capital firm 3one4 Capital and investor Arihant Patni
  • Samsung Electronics would create an artificial intelligence (AI) research centre and strengthen an executive role to look for new business areas for all its three major business groups.
  • Sequoia Capital has sold almost 1% stake in local search engine Justdial through an open market transaction, according to a BSE filing.
  • Tencent Holdings ($523B) has surpassed Facebook ($522B) in market value
    US-based stage-agnostic venture capital firm March Capital Partners is looking to close its next set of investments in India over the next few months
  • After Mahindra, Maruti Suzuki and Tata Motors, Honda Cars India Limited (HCIL) is entering to the Indian electric vehicles (EV) market.
    5. Tiger Global is reportedly ready to sell its stake in Ola to SoftBank for $500M.

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Startup News For The Day : November 22nd

Here are #StartupDidi’s main gossip for the day:

  • AI-driven mobile crowdsourcing platform, Playment has raised $1.6M funding in its Pre-Series A round.
  •  Nuvepro, a managed cloud environment solutions provider, has raised $400K investment led by 1Crowd and its investor community.
    Zone Startups/India (ZSI) Awards Five Indian Startups In North America 
  • Yuvraj Singh Backed Healthians Launches Its Services in Lucknow & Kanpur
  • Menswear Private Label MR BUTTON Raises Pre-Series A Funding – goo.gl/tQ5iVQ
    GOInternational Finland Calls Indian Series A Startups & SMEs For Smart City Bizhack India, An Opportunity For Startups And SMEs To Enter Indo-Finnish Market Entry Acceleration Programme, reported inc42.
  • Epiq Capital has announced the first close of its $200M-$250M maiden tech startup fund to invest in tech startups.
  • Kerala government would be extending financial support for startups in the state by two more years. Kerala-based startups will now be offered seven years of government backing from the current five years.
  • Infibeam Incorporation Ltd, the first listed Indian e-commerce company, is looking to divest a minority stake and is in talks with Fairfax Financial Holdings for the same, reported ET.
  • Promoters of textile firm Donear Industries have acquired OCM Woolen Mills for an undisclosed amount.
    Self-drive rental startup Zoomcar in talks to raise $50m to fund expansion, reported DealStreetAsia.
  • CleverTap partners Exotel to provide better SMS marketing solutions to customers
    ShareChat, a social network for non-native English speaking emerging markets, has brought on board Sunil Kamath as its chief business officer.
  •  Facebook has launched startup and digital training hubs to help entrepreneurs start and scale up businesses besides imparting digital skills to jobseekers.
  • BlackSoil Capital has invested around Rs 5 crore ($771,978) in three startups (GoBolt, WebEngage & Truweight) in the form of short-term working capital demand loans, reported VCCircle

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For the Women Entrepreneur – Did you know about these Government schemes?

The success and scale of the current startup ecosystem is a testament of its potential which is already being recognised by the corporate industry and eminent investors. Being a woman entrepreneur brings with itself its own challenges which are being encountered by women’s sheer skill and the ability to run their own company. Many women are now ruling the startup scenario, and the Government has been pitching in with some great schemes to make this journey easier for women..

  1. Annapurna Scheme

This scheme is offered by the State Bank of Mysore for those women entrepreneurs who are setting up food catering industry in order to sell packed meals, snacks, etc. The amount granted as a loan under this scheme can be used to fulfill the working capital needs of the business like buying utensils and other kitchen tools and equipment.

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