There are thousands of startups causing real change but you may have never heard of them
- There are over 2 million recognised social enterprises in India, compared to 56,000+ startups.
- While organisations wake up to the need for action, many social enterprises are already working on a list of challenges that go back decades.
- TiE Hyderabad's Manohar Reddy noted that financing solutions and grants for social enterprises have started emerging in India.
There are over 2 million recognised social enterprises in India — compared to 56,000+ startups recognised by the government — yet you hardly hear about them making the headlines.
In order to provide proper backing and an ecosystem to fall back upon, TiE Hyderabad is hosting TiE sustainability summit on October 4 and 5, 2021.
The summit will be attended by 25,000 social enterprises from 54 countries, making it the world’s largest summit for social enterprises in the sustainability space. The event aims to create a community of social entrepreneurs and offer support for financing, networking and collaboration for enterprises across countries.
Business Insider is an insights partner to this event.
Are there really any opportunities in the Indian social enterprises space?
“Those companies working toward sustainability will save the planet, will reduce the carbon emissions, will get us to the net zero condition, where we will leave this planet in a better shape for the next generation,” Manohar Reddy, chair of TSS 2021 and president TiE Hyderabad, told Business Insider.
The concept of ESG (Environment, social and governance) investing is gaining prominence. While organisations wake up to the need for action, many social enterprises are already working on a list of challenges that go back decades. The following are some of the examples:
- Poverty eradication
- Find solutions to water and food production challenges
- Deployment on modern technologies to eradicate social, climate, pollution related issues
- Providing a platform for discussion, debate, influencing policy making in the sustainability space
- Issues related to life on land, life under water
- Gender equality
- Education, healthcare, livelihood and other key issues plaguing the society.
|Social Enterprise||What they do|
|Bandicoot||Bandicoot has developed a robot that cleans manholes.|
|SHEF (Study Hall Education Foundation)||Shef offers education to disadvantaged girls in India.|
|Selco||Selcon runs a rural solar financing program in India|
|Goonj||A social enterprise that collects used clothing from the urban crowd, sort them, fix and later distribute among the poor and needy.|
Reddy noted that financing solutions and grants for social enterprises have started emerging in India. It’s only the matter of right mentorship to divert them to that direction and help them build a scalable enterprise.
Meanwhile, it is also true that the social enterprise has been lost in the shine of Indian startups that have the potential to over attract attractive returns. Many only take notice of this social segment in the name of tax rebates and corporate social responsibility.
AdvertisementRecently, a panel constituted by the market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) advised the setting up of a ‘social stock exchange’. It would work like a regular stock exchange except that the firms listed on it would be non-government, social enterprises.
This would help many of these upstarts raise money for their ventures.
“The new technologies, when I, when we say sustainability, when we are committed to sustainability. We have to commit to new and new technologies in the energy space, it is how energy is produced, maybe the solar photovoltaic technology or the advancements in the solar technologies in our renewable energy technologies and how we store that and how we disseminate it,” Reddy said, adding this is just an example hoe opportunities can be created by making technology that don’t emit carbon dioxide.
He added that there are social aspects to sustainability too, which offer better life and livelihood to people.
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