18 Indian women just got funding for their technology startups

Women entrepreneurs at the Demo Day of Zone Startups' empoWer accelerator program.
  • Zone Startups India recently concluded the empoWer accelerator program saw 18 women entrepreneurs get seed funding for their business.
  • 7 of them will go for a 1-week market access trip to Montreal by Government of Quebec.
  • The selected startups work on areas of Deep tech, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning among others.
After a 6-month accelerator program, 18 female entrepreneurs got a seed funding of ₹5 lakh each at the concluding demo day of Zone Startups India empoWer accelerator program.

An accelerator program is a cohort-based one which helps entrepreneurs find their way into the startup world through mentorship, networking and funding. The empoWer accelerator program’s 3rd cohort concluded on March 29 and saw women in technology take a leap in business.

Over the course of 3 years, through three cohorts 24 women have got equity free seed funding from the program.

"Till date we have invested just about INR 2 Crores through empoWer but, the 2 past cohorts have cumulatively raised in excess of INR 40 Crores and there have been 3 acquisitions. Being through such a program and getting grant funding, definitely puts theses entrepreneurs in good stead while pitching to other investors. It is also 'validation capital' from the program,” said Ajay Ramasubramaniam director India, Zone Startups.

Of the 18 winners from the latest cohort, 7 were further awarded a 1-week market access trip to Montreal by Government of Quebec.

Focusing on areas such as Deep Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Enterprise Mobility, Search & Feedback Engines, Enterprise Software, over the 6-month program, the founders were introduced to over 90 mentors and industry leaders.

From startups that are working on a device that will analyse soil health to give a quantitative estimate of nutrients present in the soil to ones that focus on women health and hygiene and even a startup that simplifies manufacturing of steel alloys, aluminium alloys etc., there was a varied range of innovation seen as a part of the accelerator program.

India is the world’s third largest startup ecosystem and still sees that only 9% of the startup founders in the country today are women.

The Indian government has introduced several schemes like Mudra Yojana Scheme For Women which provides loans to women entrepreneurs. Recently, the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) had decided that from the government’s Fund of Funds of ₹10,000 crore, one-third of the amount will be allocated for women-led startups.

See Also:
Google will groom these 10 Indian startups that use AI and machine learning
Google, 91Springboard launch entrepreneurship program for women in tier-II cities
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