Startup India Hub, which provides a common platform to entrepreneurs, advisers and investors to discover and engage with each other, is reportedly working on an initiative that will allow startups to apply for the government schemes and venture funds directly from the platform. Startup India Hub was launched by the government last month to further its Startup India initiative and educate startups about Central schemes and benefits doled out to them. Also Read - Google mentors 10 startups under 'Solve for India'Also Read - Edu-tech startup Byju's raises funds from China's Tencent
The portal has already listed about 167 schemes that hold various benefits for startups. Going ahead, it will simplify the process of fund application. The real challenge is that people don’t know about government schemes. Currently, we are only showing the schemes on the platform but the next step is to allow startups to apply for these schemes and enable them to track their application form’s status online,” an official was quoted as saying. ALSO READ: Indian government to launch 100 more incubators to help startups Also Read - Six Indian startups shortlisted for Google's 4th Launchpad Accelerator
Startups would be provided with a formal profile and log-in details, and their applications would reflect live on the portal. Some of the benefits already listed include Technology Development Programme, Software Technology Park Scheme, Support for International Patent Protection, Electronic Development Fund Policy, Bank Credit Facilitation and Performance & Credit Rating Scheme. The government is in the process of adding more functionalities. Another report revealed that the Centre was planning to roll out the platform in 6 additional languages soon.
The call centre operated by the virtual hub has reportedly received more than 60,000 queries from entrepreneurs across India in the past one year and about 67 percent of these queries have come in from tier-II and tier-III cities. Startup India Hub has collaborated with various organizations to on-board entrepreneurs and investors. To ensure easy accessibility, dedicated apps on both Android and iOS have also been launched. ALSO READ: Nomura to set up $92 million fund for startups in India
India is the world’s third-largest startup economy, behind the US and the UK. Despite being a nascent industry, startups have mushroomed all over the country at the speed of light. NASSCOM estimates that there would be 10,500 Indian startups by 2020 and will employ over 2,10,000 people. Hence, Startup India Hub that came about with the sole intention of nurturing these startups is poised to play a critical role.