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Helping Corporates And Incubators Collaborate

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Technology incubation and supporting startups come under the categories of the Companies Act, 2013, in which corporate houses can engage for their CSR projects. It is among the categories which are least invested in. The reason for this could be a communication gap between the two entities, such that corporates do not know about incubators and their projects. For this, Samhita Social Ventures and Villgro with support from GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit) have launched Incubator Marketplace, an online portal, which will help companies and incubators identify and connect with each other.

It is a way of encouraging right collaborations between both the parties, to make the most productive outcomes. The Marketplace is housed on Samhita GoodCSR, a complete online solution for CSR practitioners, and features tools to find program partners and manage CSR programs, in addition to the Marketplace.

The goal of the marketplace is to create a sustainable model for corporates and incubators to recognise each other. It aims to provide a platform for the startups to scale the level of their ideas and implementation. The portal will make way for long-term partnerships facilitating an exchange of expertise and resources.  

In a panel discussion followed by the launch of this portal, Dr Meenu Bhambani, CSR Head at Mphasis, was quoted saying, “We took another look at our CSR strategy and decided that we want to help create solutions, using technology, that have scale, and are not limited to a certain geography or segment. We wanted them to be more strategic, more structured, and sustainable.”

The challenges faced by corporates in finding incubators and the right projects to fund contribute to this being the category least invested in. Many a time, regulatory norms of interested corporates or the incubator restrict their scope for working together. Despite these challenges, corporates like Microsoft are majorly involved in the funding of startups and incubators as part of their CSR.

The launch of this online portal comes at a time when there is a need for the increase in economic growth through entrepreneurial progress in the country. The government’s agenda for poverty alleviation can be helped with this feat. Job creation and technological advancement are two of the strongest weapons to fight poverty in India. Even after the mounting GDP of the country since independence, poverty has persisted. The solutions for it can grow only through the involvement of private sector with the government initiatives. This collaboration could help bring out real-life solutions to problems faced by all.

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Regards,
The CSR Journal Team
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