Under the scheme, start-ups can benefit through funding support of up to ₹ 1 Crore and a comprehensive three-month mentorship program that combines virtual and in-person sessions
STPI, a government-owned entity, has launched its "Leap" initiative, calling for startup applications to support and fund entrepreneurs through partnerships with venture capitalists and private investors. In conjunction with The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) Delhi-NCR, Software Technology Parks of India (STPI) aims to handpick 75 startups this year. They intend to provide funding of up to Rs 1 crore to 15 of these startups through collaborations with venture capital firms and angel investors, offering mentorship opportunities to all selected startups as well.
Secretary MeitY, S Krishnan said, “Today, India is no longer known as a BPO destination, it has evolved into a global capability centre and R&D centre. India stands as a leader in digital public infrastructure and this can now be used in multiple ways by entrepreneurs to build successful enterprises. Youth in smaller cities have the hunger to do and achieve more. That’s the fire in the belly we need to build on. We would like to also see more women and people from tier 2/3 cities coming as entrepreneurs.”
Arvind Kumar, DG of STPI said,” With this initiative, technology start-ups will gain entry into the market, experience rapid growth and diversify into new horizons. This program is focused mainly on two things – mentorship and co-investment.”
Sushil Pal, joint secretary, MeitY, said, “Our start-ups have been a great success story for our country and have seen exponential growth in the last couple of years.”
Dr Saurabh Shrivastava, chairman emeritus, TiE Delhi-NCR, said, “Through the collaboration with STPI, TiE Delhi-NCR is not only providing funding but also providing mentoring and market access. These are people who build successful companies and know the mistakes they have made. We will help these companies to scale and grow.”
Alok Mittal, president, TiE Delhi-NCR, said, “TiE's mission has always been to foster ecosystems, and this program aligns perfectly with our goals. We'll mentor 75 companies over three months, aiming to secure funding for about 15. We'll also take these showcases to over 30 cities, expanding the impact."
This initiative will enable the start-ups to establish a product market fit, identify customer segments, grow hacking strategies, business compliance, leadership recruitment, and fundraising. With a strong focus on nurturing start-ups and fostering entrepreneurial brilliance, this event represented the first step in an exciting journey that will extend the LEAP AHEAD Accelerator Program to cities like Vijayawada, Chandigarh, and Bhubaneswar.
The launch was followed by three pivotal panel discussions on Path to a Product Oriented Nation, Accelerating Innovation, and Funding Insights: Navigating the Investment Landscape. Esteemed panelists from the industry shared insights with young entrepreneurs in the audience.
A knowledge report on “From Start-up to Scale Up: The Role of Digital India and Opportunities Ahead” was unveiled during the event. The report is a comprehensive resource that showcases success stories of start-ups that have harnessed the potential of Digital India to create innovative solutions that address societal challenges, while also driving economic growth and job creation.