GBC 2017: Agri-Innovation Roadshow Organised in Bhubaneswar
‘Green Business Challenge 2017’ provides an opportunity for innovators and entrepreneurs to share their novel ideas to get recognized, validated and commercialized.
Innovative Change Collaborative Services Private Limited (ICCSPL), New Delhi in association with KIIT-Technology Business Incubator (KIIT-TBI), KIIT University, Bhubaneswar, NABARD, Bhubaneswar and Labs Indigram, New Delhi organised an Agri-Tech Roadshow at KIIT Campus in Bhubaneswar on 28thNovember 2017 to scout out start-ups and young entrepreneurs who have innovative ideas for transforming the socio-economic condition of farmers andother stakeholders in the agri-ecosystem.
It was a joint effort to recognize, promote and support agri-innovations in Odisha . The roadshow was started with a welcome address by Sanjuka Badhai,Incubation Manager, KIIT-TBI, Bhubaneswar. Highlighting activities and achievements of KIIT-TBI, she said that the institute which was started in 2009 has provided vibrant ecosystem for promoting innovations and entrepreneurship development.
Badhai said “We are working in an ecosystem to promote entrepreneurship. Our main objective is to provide incubation support to the start-ups or individuals which have the innovative ideas having the commercial viability. It is one of the emerging social innovation hubs in the country.”
Nitin Singh, Manager, Agri-Value Chain, ICCSPL who was organising the event deliberated on the objective behind organising the Green Business Challenge 2017. He laid emphasis on the need to encourage novel ideas in agri-value chain, nurture them and provide handholding till commercialisation of the ideas.
It is pertinent to mention that the government of India is focussing on ‘doubling farmers’ income’ in the coming five years. ICCSPL, who is spearheading an initiative to encourage agri-entrepreneurship in the country, especially Eastern and North Eastern states, has been organising such events since 2016 with different partners and creating a platform for budding entrepreneurs to participate and grow.
The Bhubaneswar roadshow was part of this initiative. Moreover, it is also a part of ICCSPL’s effort to reach out to as many innovators and entrepreneurs as possible and provide them an opportunity to share their ideas.
Singh who was reminiscing GBC 2016 said, “I feel happy to mention that last time the winner of the GBC 2016 was from Odisha. We need entrepreneurs who can support complete value chain, support farmers in one way and also benefit the consumers. We feel the start-ups and SMEs can play important role in strengthening the agri-value chain where we find a huge gap in the country.”
While recollecting last year’s GBC, Singh said, “A team of jury members comprising of secretaries of Government of India, representatives of World Bank, Investors and international experts evaluate the ideas and select the best three. We start working with them from an early stage, provide incubation support and hand holding till the idea is commercialized.”
During the event at KIIT, budding entrepreneurs, representatives from development organisations, bankers and agri-entrepreneurs were invited to discuss about the agribusiness opportunities in Odisha and other states.
Dr K C Panigrahi, Chief General Manager, NABARD, Bhubaneswar, who was the Chief Guest for the event, threw light on the role of NABARD in promoting and supporting agri-innovations. Complimenting the efforts of ICCSPL and KIIT for co-organising the event, Dr Panigrahi said we should continue to invite good ideas and innovations in agriculture and allied sectors; encourage them to work for the benefit of farmers and other stakeholders.
Emphasising on NABARD’s commitment for the socio-economic development of the people of this region, he said, “NABARD spends INR 14715 crore in Odisha under different programmes and projects. We have a fund of INR 2000 crore for the food processing sector. We are the subsidy channelizing agency for 15 schemes. We are already working with more than 500 NGOs. We hold programmes and awareness drives at district level also.”
However, he wanted the benefits of the programmes to reach the intended beneficiaries. Further, encouraging the participants, he said, “We have diversified our activities. We monitor all development schemes and programmes of Government of India related to agriculture and allied sectors, whether it is ‘stand up India’ or ‘capacity building’ or ‘implementation of schemes and programmes”.
Among others, Deepak Ram, Head, Centre for Agribusiness Management, Utkal University and Dr. Manisha Acharya, Director Labs Indigram, New Delhi were present on this occasion.
After a successful completion of ‘The Green Business Challenge (GBC) 2016’, an initiative to find and nurture ideas that stimulate innovation in the field of agriculture and allied sectors, this year ‘The Green Business Challenge (GBC) 2017’ is going on with the theme ‘Doubling the farmers income’ through agribusiness with a hope to harness ideas on these lines and contribute for the development of the sector.
“Interested students and entrepreneurs can submit their business proposals online (www.greenbusinesschallange.com) adhering to the specified timelines. The best proposals will be rewarded with cash prizes, besides a tailor-made incubation support for 6-8 months”, said Singh in his concluding remark.