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IIT Mandi invites applications for Startup Grand Challenge

Each thematic area has prize money of up to Rs 2 lakh that will be distributed to the top 3 startups in the given themes.


Indian Institute of Technology Mandi’s technology business incubator on Monday invited applications for the fifth edition of its annual flagship event, Himalayan Startup Trek (HST) which will be held on 11-12 December.

IIT Mandi will host the ‘HST Startup Grand Challenge’ – startup pitch competition in three thematic areas including the New Age Alliance – Human-Computer Interaction with a prize money of Rs 2 lakh which is sponsored by iHub and HCI Foundation, IIT Mandi.

The other two thematic areas are the Foothill Innovators Challenge – Build for the Himalayas with a prize money of Rs 1.25 lakh (sponsored by SJVN and Compliance Support) and the Habitable World Challenge – Environment and Sustainability with a prize money of Rs 2 lakh (sponsored by ALSiSAR Impact, Peak Ventures, The Solar Labs).

The Startups, innovators and aspiring entrepreneurs can participate in this challenge and get an opportunity to win Rs 5 lakh cash prizes and Rs 50 lakh funding opportunity during the event. The last date to apply is 25th November 2021.

The event aims at bringing together the stakeholders of the Indian Startup ecosystem and providing a platform to young entrepreneurs to pitch their ideas for incubation support and to raise funding from investors.

The event is supported by HP Center for Entrepreneurship Development of HP Industries department and applications can be filled on the event website.

Inviting the aspiring entrepreneurs to participate in Startup Grand Challenge, Prof Puran Singh, Faculty-in-charge, IIT Mandi Catalyst, said, “HST has been the gateway to Catalyst’s incubation program for startups from across the country. The thematic startup grand challenge this year is the latest feature in HST. We are building capacity and expertise in these three areas and intend to handpick committed startups for support.”

Each thematic area has prize money of up to Rs 2 lakh that will be distributed to the top 3 startups in the given themes.

Apart from this, top startups will also be provided with incubation support and funding access for prototyping as well product development through various funding schemes hosted by Catalyst and provide upto Rs 50 Lakh of funding.

It is worth mentioning here that in its short journey, IIT Mandi Catalyst has supported over 160 startups in a range of sectors including clean energy, healthcare, enterprise management, agriculture, manufacturing, biotech, education, and consumer internet. Catalyst has hosted over 100 such programs to date.

Further, the funding needs of startups in the early stages are also met through the funding schemes hosted at Catalyst which have disbursed or committed over Rs 6 crore for prototyping and commercialization purposes to the startups.

Through its support programs, IIT Mandi Catalyst guides early stage entrepreneurial initiatives by providing support in infrastructure, finances, mentoring, and industry connections, thereby making itself an attractive destination for startups across the country.