State plans centre of excellence for blockchain startups in Gurugram

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Published on Oct 09, 2019 09:39 PM IST
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By, Gurugram

To provide mentorship and facilities for research and innovation to early-stage block-chain startups in Gurugram and beyond, a centre of excellence (CoE) has been planned at the Electronic City in Udyog Vihar.

The CoE, the first of its kind in the state, has been funded by the state government and would be managed by the Software Technology Parks of India (STPI), under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology. The centre aims to incubate close to a 100 startups in the next five years, according to officials involved with the project.

Blockchain is a distributed ledger technology that stores information across multiple systems securely, which means the data cannot be tampered with. Startups working with this technology are in various industries such as finance, governance and supply chain. Gurugram houses around 1,544 startups out of around 7,000 startups in the national capital region (NCR), shows a recent report by TiE Delhi-NCR. It is also home to around a 100 blockchain startups and companies, according to the district industries department.

Based out of Gurugram, the centre will aim to put blockchain startups at a strategically advantageous position, officials said. “The CoE wants to use Gurugram’s startup ecosystem to mentor, fund and provide an environment for startups to grow. Many blockchain startups die early due to lack of investments and exchange of knowledge and practices,” STPI additional director Amit Bansal said.

Startups that would be nurtured by the centre are expected to be finalised in the first quarter of 2020 through a detailed process, involving hackathons and other open challenges, officials said.

Bansal pointed out that globally, large investment volumes are being directed towards blockchain technology. In the first half of 2019, global investment in blockchain was $2 billion, as per Incrypt, a network of blockchain practitioners. However, investment in India during the same period was only $5.3 million, shows the same report.

The centre, as per officials, would target global investments in the growing blockchain technology market in India.

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