IIT Kanpur’s two-day Annual Startup Festival – Abhivyakti 2023 concludes amidst much fanfare

• A NIRMAN Demo Day event was held for the 15 selected startups under the NIRMAN Accelerator Program, supported by DST, Govt. of India
• ‘Charcha with Entrepreneurs’ had experts and innovators from various startups coming together to discuss Sustainable Entrepreneurship
• ‘Celebvyakti’ event hosted successful entrepreneurs to share their journey with participants.

Kanpur: The two-day annual startup festival of IIT Kanpur – Abhivyakti 2023, culminated on March 5 amidst much fanfare from the delegates and participating startups. Entrepreneurs, industry experts, mentors, and investors from various parts of the country joined the event to share ideas and connect. The concluding day was filled with a plethora of informative sessions and insightful discussions centered around sustainable entrepreneurship, industry-relevant practices, and key learnings.

One of the key highlights from Day 2 was the NIRMAN Demo Day, which marked the culmination of the first cohort of the NIRMAN Accelerator Program launched by the Startup Incubation and Innovation Centre (SIIC) at IIT Kanpur. The accelerator program is supported by the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Govt. of India, as part of its NIDHI scheme portfolio. The event was solely dedicated to the showcasing of 15 startups and their innovative and indigenous products developed under the NIRMAN Accelerator Program. NIRMAN Demo Day event offered a great chance for entrepreneurs and innovators to display their cutting-edge products to potential investors and mentors.

Four innovative startups, namely Xfinito Biodesigns Pvt Ltd, Primary Healthtech Pvt Ltd, Climec Labs Pvt Ltd, and Meukron Technologies Pvt Ltd, have been awarded a grant of INR 10 lakh under the NIRMAN Accelerator Program by the Department of Science and Technology (DST). The grant was handed over by Dr. Anita Gupta, Head-NSTEDB at DST, Government of India, as part of Abhivyati 2023. She, along with investors and mentors, gave valuable feedback to the startups in making their products and services more impactful.

In the session titled ‘Charcha with Entrepreneurs’, experts and innovators from various startups from across the country came together to discuss Sustainable Entrepreneurship. The panellists, including Nikhil Kurele, Co-Founder and CEO, Noccarc Robotics Pvt. Ltd; Dr. Sandip Patil, Director, E-Spin Nanotech; N. Balaji, Founder & Director, Geokno; Tejas Kusurkar, Co-founder & CEO, Offgrid Energy Labs; and Ashish Aggarwal, Co-Founder & Chief Technology Officer at Weather Risk Management Services Pvt. Ltd., stressed on the importance of promoting startups and entrepreneurship in India, while also sharing their best practices and lessons learned in the field. The session was moderated by Sarthak Gupta, co-founder of NovoEarth. The discussion highlighted the need for sustainable practices in entrepreneurship, and the potential for startups to drive innovation and change in the industry.

Another attraction from Day 2 was ‘Celebvyakti’, an event that hosted celebrity speakers Gautam Kumar, Co-Founder, FarEye; Anish Popli, CEO & Founder, ProcMart; and Vishakha Singh, EX-VP & Co-founder, Wazirx NFT, for the “Startup to Stardom: The Power of Storytelling” session moderated by Dr. Aarti Gupta, CIO of DBR Ventures. The panellists shared accounts of their journey from budding to successful entrepreneurs. Insights on the obstacles that came their way and the resolve they had to take to build their startups were shared with the budding entrepreneurs attending the session.

The Abhivyakti 2023 event came to a successful end with a valedictory session featuring keynote speakers Shri Binay Jha, Director of SBM-Urban, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, and Shri Alok Kumar, Principal Secretary, Planning & Programme Implementation, Govt. of Uttar Pradesh, along with closing remarks from Prof. Amitabha Bandyopadhyay, Co-Professor-in-Charge of Innovation & Incubation at IIT Kanpur.

In his remarks, Prof. Amitabha Bandyopadhyay, said, “The Abhivyakti startup festival aims to foster a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship in India by supporting and promoting startup ventures. The festival has been successful in attracting top-notch startups and investors and has helped many budding entrepreneurs to secure funding and partnerships.”

Abhivyakti 2023 offered a platform for participants to showcase their products and services, share their ideas and engage in insightful discussions centered around the theme of innovation and entrepreneurship. The event was hosted with the aim to foster conversations and partnerships, paving way for a brighter future for entrepreneurship and innovation in the country.

Startup Incubation and Innovation Centre (SIIC), IIT Kanpur, is one of the oldest incubators in the country. It was established in 2000 when the entrepreneurial ecosystem was still at a nascent stage in India. The multifaceted and vibrant incubation ecosystem at IIT Kanpur, nurtured for over two decades, prospers to fill the gaps on the road to converting an idea into a successful and meaningful business model. The domain expertise combined with the infrastructural prowess of the academic institute has collectively demonstrated a knack for tremendous social impact and technological advancement over the years.

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