Coimbatore: Ippo Pay and Buyofuel, two startups incubated under the AIC Raise supported by Atal Innovation Mission, NITI Aayog, are among the final ten winner startups in the Tamil Nadu Seed Grant Fund (TANSEED).
This year’s pitching saw an application of 1399 startups. 35 startups were shortlisted to go through intense boot camps and pitches, where 20 startups pitched in the finals to win.
AIC Raise had four startups among the 35 shortlisted startups and three among the 20 startups that were selected for the final pitching.
Of these 20 finalists, 2 startups, Ippo Pay and Buyofuel emerged among the 10 winners on 14 February 2020.
The winners carry the proud title along with the grant of Rs.10 Lakh each.
The Tamil Nadu Startup Seed Grant Fund (TANSEED) 2021 challenge is organized by The Entrepreneurship Development and Innovation Institute, Tamil Nadu (EDII-TN), the nodal agency implementing various initiatives to promote innovation and startup ecosystem, in association with Headstart Network Foundation.
The event was a three-day Bootcamp which consisted of one-on-one sessions by the teams with mentors. The teams then created and submitted pitch decks that were shortlisted for the final pitchfest. The shortlisted startups then presented their business in the pitch challenge, after which 10 teams were awarded a grant of Rs 10 lakh each to take their startups forward with support from StartupTN.
Speaking after the announcement, Mr. Mohan K, the founder of IppoPay, and Mr. Kishan, the founder of Buyofuel, were delighted to be among the top 10 startup winners of this TANSEED edition.
“In our pitch, it is the collective effort from all that enabled us to be selected in the top 10 TANSEED winners. After an elaborate and professional screening process, we look forward to the worth of this achievement. We will work harder and with more vigor to make Tamil Nadu, India, and the world a better place,” said Kishan, CEO, Buyofuel.
In addition, Mr. Kishan, CEO of Buyofuel echoed the continuous support the team has been receiving from AIC Raise.
“Buyofuel is incubated at AIC Raise and AIC Raise gives us constant updates on various grants and seed fund challenges. As a part of this, they sent us the application for TANSEED. The good part about AIC Raise is that they understand that entrepreneurs get stuck in their operations and so they continuously follow us up and get us to apply to most, if not all events happening around the world. The TANSEED Bootcamp and the sessions coupled with continuous guidance and feedback from AIC Raise and Headstart ensured that our pitch deck, more importantly, the story and business of Buyofuel came out much more strongly. We are grateful,” added Kishan, CEO, Buyofuel.
“This was our second-year entry, last year we were not among the finalists. We were a little sad that we did not get that but we are the people who never give up. We focus on working hard. We were confident enough to apply this year again because we have good traction and growth. The juries asked what the USP for IppoPay is compared to our competitors. There are no USPs at the moment and our main focus for 2021 is to position our startup into the market. We will come up with USP next. Our mission is to bring digital payment transformation to the entire Tamil Nadu in 2021,” said Mohan, CEO, IppoPay.
“Much proud to be part of AIC Raise as a startup incubator and sharing the pleasure that our portfolio startups are getting recognized, this will encourage more aspiring entrepreneurs to start their dream ventures through us. We are always on a mission on supporting startups and innovators working on Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) and TANSEED helped us to validate the programs that we do at AIC Raise,” said Ebin Ephrem Elavathingal, Senior Manager, AIC Raise.
The state launched the Tamil Nadu Startup and Innovation Policy 2018-23 in January 2019 and has organized the Tamil Nadu Innovation Grand Challenge (TNIGC) for the last three years. TNIGC has had three cohorts with a total of 16 startups awarded a seed grant of Rs 5 lakh per startup. The addition of the ten startups from this year’s cohort brings the number to 26 startups to date.