Imphal: Manipur chief minister N Biren Singhlaunched Venture Fund for Manipur Startup Scheme 2.0 in collaboration with North Eastern Development Finance Corporation Ltd (NEDFi) during a Manipur Startup Workshop held at the Sangai Conference Hall of Hotel Imphal on Saturday.
The workshop was organised jointly by the Department of Planning, Government of Manipur and the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, Government of India.
“Happy to launch the Manipur Startup Ventire Fund to support viable, scalable and innovative ventures based in Manipur through equity or equity linked investments. In this regard, an MoU was signed between the Government of Manipur and NEDFi to establish the venture fund in Manipur. The fund which will have an initial corpus of Rs 30 crore was formally launched today,” said CM Biren on Facebook.
The fund targets to invest in more than 50 startups from the state with investments ranging from Rs 10 lakh to Rs 3 crores per startup. The Planning Department will be the Nodal Agency of the fund and NEDFi Venture Capital Fund will manage the fund, the chief minister said.
Addressing the gathering during the inaugural session of the workshop, CM Biren Singh maintained that his government’s aim is to provide source of earning to every household of the state and as such the government had taken up various schemes and initiatives to give direct or indirect employment to at least a member of each family.
He mentioned that the Startup Scheme has been giving avenues to entrepreneurs to expand their undertakings and to turn the youths from job seekers to job creators. Expressing that youths are the future of the state, Singh informed that Rs 10 crore each for Imphal West, Imphal East and Churachandpur had already been sanctioned for setting up Youth Skill Centre. Another Rs 5 crore each had also been sanctioned for Senapati, Ukhrul and Chandel districts.
Stating that various initiatives like ‘Go to Village’ and ‘Go to Hills’ had been taken up to bring inclusive development in the State, CM Biren added that the state is marching ahead towards development, with bandh and blockades becoming a thing of the past. He continued that a senior officer of the government had been given in-charge of each Sub-Divisions of Manipur to ensure that infrastructure development reaches every nook and corner of the state.
The chief minister further stated that various meetings are being held to streamline the development works taken and to ensure its progress. Mentioning the development works, including constructions of seven-storey government quarters at New Checkon, Sangai Ethnic Park, Amusement Park at Thengu Chingjin and Heritage site at Makhel, he maintained that the state could be taken to a higher level of development if we could go in the same pace.
He raised concern that only few people with innovative ideas had approached to get benefit of the Startup Scheme. He also stressed the need for the state’s youths to get expertise in the IT sector as the world is advancing rapidly with the coming of 5G service adding that the state is lagging in this sector.
He mentioned that youths of Manipur have lots of talents and possess discipline compared to other states. Informing that the corpus fund set aside for the Manipur Startup Scheme had been increased from Rs 30 crore to Rs 100 crore, he appealed to the youths of Manipur to take benefit of the Scheme and expressed his hopefulness that the state would achieve the goal of becoming the first state to have an income earner in every family.
Chairman and Managing Director, NEDFi Shri PVSLN Murty stated that the launching of first ever Venture Capital for Startup, to encourage the youths to come up with viable propositions, would be memorable in the history of Manipur. It is through the initiative of the chief minister that the state had come up with the launch of venture capital before other states had done, he added. He mentioned that the grant provided by the Government of Manipur in the Startup loan had created the ignite in many startups.
During the programme, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the Government of Manipur and NEDFi. The chief minister also distributed prizes to the winners of Techstar Startup Weekend organised by MIT. Eco Youth from CIPET was given the first prize with a cash award of Rs 25,000, Alleviate from MIT with Rs 15,000 for the second prize and Tanja from MTU was awarded with Rs 10,000 for the third prize. Consolation prizes were also awarded to other startups.