The Gujarat University Startup and Entrepreneurship Council (GUSEC) has initiated a startup accelerator namely ‘Breakthrough Accelerator’ to invite ideas and proposals — from startups and innovators — that may offer solutions to the ongoing global coronavirus pandemic. While the deadline for receiving the first round of applications is April 12, the deadline for the second round is April 22.
After the continuous scrutiny of applications is completed in a phased manner, the ideas and proposals will be nurtured and developed into concrete business models. Financial aid will also be provided for the same, according to GU representatives.
Vice-Chancellor of Gujarat University, Himanshu Pandya said, “Through Breakthrough Accelerator, we are pooling all possible resources on a common platform to look at various challenges and find solutions that could be implemented.”
Group CEO of GUSEC, Rahul Bhagchandani said that ideas to combat the outbreak are pouring in, but it is necessary to provide them with end-to-end support on a single platform. “GUSEC is well-placed in academic, government and business communities to support these ideas and if necessary, even expedite various approvals. The accelerator will debut on April 2 and focus on such startups,” he said.
The accelerator will be supported by UNICEF and various affiliations of the Gujarat University. The Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) and the Ahmedabad Smart City project are also partners of the accelerator.
“The process would also involve children who were part of the Children’s Innovation Festival organised last year. Young people have the knowledge and commitment to provide solutions to any problem; our aim is to provide them with a platform to engage and cultivate the culture of innovation and design thinking,” said Laxmi Bhawani, Chief of UNICEF Gujarat.
GUSEC is affiliated with the Student Support and Innovation Policy (SSIP) of the state government. It is also a nodal body for the state government’s startup scheme under the Industries Commissionerate and a Technology Business Incubator (TBI) under the Central government’s Department of Science and Technology.
GUSEC was also recently funded with the Technology Incubation and Development of Entrepreneurs (TIDE) centre, under the MietY (Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology) Startup Hub, Government of India.
GUSEC will be partnering with healthcare and testing laboratories, along with getting medical experts on board as mentors. It has linkages with industry bodies such as The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) to provide mentorship to startups and innovators.
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