Many IIT and IIM alumni have successfully turned their blueprints into start-ups, thanks to the incubation centres there.
Vivek Pandey, an alumnus of IIT Kharagpur is one of them. Co-founder of Ecofrost Technologies, he started an agri-focused company engaged in creating solutions to bridge gaps in cold chain infrastructure and technology. “The company envisions disrupting the current state of food supply chain in India by empowering farmers, mandis and mobile cold chain players with clean technology for a sustainable future,” says Pandey. The company, incubated at the Science and Technology Entrepreneurs’ Park of IIT Kharagpur, is developing a small-scale solar-powered cold storage system.
He is happy that the centre provided them with an incubation facility that includes an office space, and necessary amenities like high voltage electricity supply, internet and more. “It has also facilitated to us the funds necessary to develop the first working model which has been key to our business process. We were funded with `15 lakh for product development,” he adds.
It’s not just the engineering students who have benefitted from these incubation centres. IIM alumni also have similar stories to share. One of them is Manish Jobanputra, an alumnus of IIM Ahmedabad, who started Fine Feather School Health Programme that aims to offer quality health checks for schoolchildren to find hidden ailments. “We have done checks on more than 25,000 school kids. Our second venture is called Fine Feather Dental Clinics, for which we have six clinics in Ahmedabad. We aim to bring in the best practices in dental health in terms of hygiene, transparency and treatment,” he says. Besides the credibility, the innovation centre at his alma mater also helped him with infrastructure. “Institute-based incubation centres such as CIIE also play a major role in building a network of successful entrepreneurs. We got a seed fund of `25 lakh from CIIE,” he says.