From the startup world – May 23

A lot of startups are going green.

A compilation of important news from the startup world: 


Why these startups are going green
It’s Not Just Saving The Environment That Clean Tech Startups Are Aiming For. They’re Also Building Sustainable Businesses Environmentally-conscious entrepreneurs are using clean technology to create a green future.These entrepreneurs are building sustainable businesses that build eco-friendly products or help companies reduce their carbon footprint. “Anything produced in a sustainable manner or with less environmentally damaging materials while using technology is a clean-tech company ,” says Kunal Upadhyay , founder, Infuse Ventures, which has a fund dedicated to earlystage clean technology companies.

Edutech startups: Why the opportunity as well as the challenge is huge
In March 2015, Embibe , a company providing customised learning solutions, decided to make what appeared to be a foolhardy move. At a time when startups were racing to squeeze out more revenue from their business , it seemed to head in the opposite direction. After charging Rs 12,000 per user for its online education content, it decided to make its content available for free and instead focus on improving personalised learning outcomes.
The startup, backed by Kalaari Capital and Lightbox Ventures , eschewed fresh funding and unfettered growth and decided to strengthen its business by pushing users to pay for better outcomes. In this case, it was via what it called personalised score improvement, by looking at three key parameters: behaviour or commitment, test-taking skills and knowledge of candidates.

Government Standing Up to Foster Startups
For availing various benefits under different Government schemes inclusive of schemes cited in the Action Plan, an entity needs to get recognized as a ‘startup’ by applying on the Startup India App/portal with any of the 6 (six) documents as specified by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. The portal/app caters to the startups with a real time recognition certificate, which will save the startup a lot of time.
In relation to the proposal in the Action Plan pertaining to providing financial support to startups through Fund of Funds, as per news reports, the Small Industries Development Bank of India (“SIDBI”) has sanctioned INR 1,000 Crore to 30 SEBI registered venture capital funds.

Flipkart’s Sharat Singh quits within six months
Sharat Singh’s departure follows a string of exits at Flipkart in recent months. Most recently, chief product officer Punit Soni quit the company in just over a year. Mukesh Bansal, head of marketplace and a board member, and chief business officer Ankit Nagori resigned in February, barely a month after the e-commerce giant changed the roles of its two co-founders. Binny Bansal, who was the COO, took over as its CEO while Sachin Bansal, who was the CEO, became executive chairman. Among other senior-level management changes, Mekin Maheshwari, Flipkart’s chief people officer and part of its original team, stepped down from his full-time role to take up an advisory role in September last year

IET gears up to organize IoT India Congress 2016 in Bengaluru
IET India IoT Panel has decided to organize a three-day event titled ‘IoT India Congress 2016’ on the Internet of Things, which will be held between September 6 and 8, 2016 in Bengaluru.
Founded 145 years ago, the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), earlier known as (IEE) is one of the world’s leading professional societies for the engineering and technology community.
J S Deepak – Secretary, Department of Telecommunications, Government of India made the announcement and unveiled the website and brochure of the conclave in New Delhi. The IoT India Congress will be supported by The Department of Telecommunications, Ministry of Communications & Information Technology, Government of India.

Early stage PE investments take a hit, outlook bullish
Early stage private equity investments saw a sharp decline in the first four months of this year, but the outlook seems bullish as the government’s initiative for startups is expected to boost investment in this space, experts say. According to PwC , during January-April 2016, early stage PE investments saw a decline of 57 per cent in value terms and 25 per cent in volume terms. Experts attribute the dip in startup investments to a mix of global macroeconomic . The slowdown is partly also attributed to companies waiting for stock market conditions to improve to secure better valuations. This year, investor caution has increased manifold, resulting in an acute slowdown in funding, fall in valuations and delayed deal closures,” Sumchit Anand Managing Director-Acquisory India Consulting said.

Russian Venture Capital scouts for tieups to enter India
Russian Federation-backed Russian Venture Capital (RVC) is scouting for Indian ventures to partner its portfolio companies, as the fund-of-funds looks to enter and make a mark in Asia’s third-largest economy. RVC manages assets of about $500 million (about Rs 3,326 crore) across 22 funds. It is keen on joint ventures with Indian entities across sectors, particularly in education, biotechnology, renewable energy and the broader healthcare space, according to a senior executive at RVC. “The first task is to promote our companies, and find industrial partners (for them), and try and embed them into India’s, as well as into the global supply chain,” Alexander Potapov, executive director of RVC, told ET. “The next stage will be to find investment partners.”

India has done away with ‘licence raj’ but ‘inspector raj’ still there: Raghuram Rajan
Pitching for better business environment for startups, Reserve Bank Governor Raghuram Rajan said India has done away with the licence raj, but ‘inspector raj’ continues to some extent. He also said that regulations should be for betterment of the industry and not to discourage entrepreneurs and suggested a system of self-certification for the industries with some checks on the part of the authorities to prevent any misuse. Addressing ministers, bankers, bureaucrats and other stakeholders at the 4th Odisha Knowledge Hub here, the RBI chief also said Indian economy is in the midst of recovery but some areas are still under stress.

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