On the occasion of the 175th foundation day, Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee (IIT Roorkee) organized a Startup Expo 2022 recently. IIT Roorkee has developed a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem where not only students and faculty members are developing startups, but outsiders are also getting incubation support for their startups.
It is noteworthy that IIT Roorkee’s innovation ecosystem has supported more than 125 startups.
During the Startup Expo, 50 startups showcased their products and technologies in emerging fields of AI-ML, Drone Technology, Robotics, Health Sciences, Agriculture, Environmental, Energy Sector, & E-commerce. The event was conceptualized with a Defence centric theme. The objective was to serve as a medium of interaction between the founders and various stakeholders, thus promoting a thriving entrepreneurial culture.
IIT Roorkee students, faculty, startups, and more than 100 industry representatives participated in the event. Stalls of commemorative stamps and coins issued on the occasion of 175 years were also a major attraction among the visitors at Startup Expo.
The event was inaugurated by Dr. Kailash Kumar Pathak, Director, DFTM DRDO, Col. Virbhadra Singh Rawat, Defence Coordinator Govt. of Uttarakhand and Shri Shambhu Sharma, Head of Operations, OPTEL, in the presence of other dignitaries.
In the event, the Best Startup award was given to 4 startups from various domains. The winners were Indigenous Energy Pvt. Ltd., Cypher, Ballice Smart Devices, and Super Good Nano Pvt. Ltd.
Some of the key startups that participated in Startup Expo 2022 include:
Ø RavenEye Geospatial Tech Limited: IIT researchers set up a new company, RAVENEYE GEOSPATIAL PVT LTD, under TIDES, IIT Roorkee (Startup India Program by Government of India). The goal was to reduce the dominance of foreign companies in India’s geospatial market, making India self-sufficient in this field. The company prepared drones, with the help of which the farmer can spray chemicals uniformly on the crop at a low cost, which will save both the time and cost of the farmer.
DTown Robotics Pvt. Ltd.: It is a deep tech startup based in Uttarakhand, India. The company works on designing and developing unmanned aerial/ ground solutions for Defence and Agricultural applications. The startup works on the development of customized robotics and drone solutions, including hardware, software, and analytics solutions. They believe in providing advanced technologies to people who are serving the nation 24X7.
Indi Energy: Indi Energy is an energy storage startup from IIT Roorkee with years of experience developing energy storage technologies like Sodium-ion batteries, Solid-state batteries, etc. The startup works for developing and commercializing Sodium ion (Na-ion) batteries and the technology of its content. It is also India’s first company to have successfully (indigenously) developed a Sodium-ion pouch cell with the highest performance in bio-waste/agricultural waste-derived commercial Hard Carbon (patented technology).
Ø Perovskite Innovations Pvt. Ltd: The startup develops perovskite materials based next generation X-ray detectors for X-ray imaging. It also focuses on making buildings energy efficient by integrating transparent solar photovoltaic panels into the building fabric using transparent perovskite solar cells. It also develops a semi-transparent perovskite panel for Building Integrated Photovoltaics (BIPV) applications.
Ø Powerzest Energy Solutions Pvt. Ltd.: Powerzest Energy Solutions is engaged in renewable energy project and their components. The company also manufactures micro-wind turbines with a unique design for rural and urban applications, with a major focus on charging infrastructure.
Another session was to pitch ideas for launching new startups. Three such ideas were pitched by Jagdish Neduri, Chaudhary Mohammad Tariq, and Gajanan Gitte and successfully drew the attention of jury members. Pahul Singh Sawhney and Kunal Shah pitched the two most promising ideas and provided with pre-incubation support at the Tinkering Lab of IIT Roorkee.
A panel discussion was held on High Tech and deep-tech technologies to strengthen the nation’s startup ecosystem, focusing on taking Indian technologies to the global level to meet its commitment to Atmanirbhar Bharat.
Dr. B V Mohan Reddy, Chairman, Board of Governors, who is a first-generation entrepreneur, motivated all the founders of startups present during startup expo by sharing his journey in building a Billion-Dollar enterprise. He emphasized the need for scaling startups once they have robust products/services. Speaking to the media, he said that various policies at IIT Roorkee are facilitating faculty members to be non-executive directors in these startups and contribute their knowledge and wisdom.
Prof. K.K. Pant, Director of IIT Roorkee, welcomed guests and wished them a happy 175th anniversary of the institute. He recalled the events from 1847-2022 that have resulted in new age IIT Roorkee. He stressed that start-ups must work for the Make-in-India initiative and deliver products and services that match and exceed global quality standards. The three keywords for sustainability are precision, localization, and accessibility. “We will encourage young students and faculty members to be a part of our Start-up ecosystem, and we will always strive for innovation and keep the nation’s values on top.”
He added that the Expo 2022 is defence-centric, and IITR plans to organise the next Expo with healthcare in focus.
Dr. Kailash Kumar Pathak, Director, DFTM, DRDO, said this startup expo is a positive step towards improved prospects and avenues to address the nation’s critical and futuristic defence technology requirements. We should enhance our operational capabilities to strengthen the manufacturing sector for achieving Aatmanirbharta in Defence.
Prof. Akshay Dvivedi, Dean, Sponsored Research and Industrial Consultancy, said that the aim of this expo is to enable the growth of the Startup ecosystem in such a way that more startups get incubated at IIT Roorkee and contribute towards the development of Science and Technology. The time has come to convert ideas into reality, making them commercially viable, and IITR is committed to fulfill its enabling role. I am delighted that this event has enabled everyone associated with IIT Roorkee – from industry partners, Startups, and all other stakeholders to come together as one entity and take proactive initiatives toward a developed economy for the nation.
Mr. Manish Anand, CEO of the iHub Divyasampark said that this expo offers opportunities for innovators to commercialize their innovation. An expo like this is a space for innovators to get together and work towards building a startup ecosystem keeping the vision of Make in India in mind.
The CEO of TIDES Business Incubator at IIT Roorkee, Mr. Azam Ali Khan, shared his thoughts on the startup expo 2022 as an excellent initiative for young and aspiring entrepreneurs to showcase their technology and ideas.
Prof. Rajat Agarwal, Associate Dean of Innovation & Incubation, and Prof. Sai Ramudu Meka, Associate Dean of Corporate Interaction, said that this Startup expo is a stepping stone towards building an environment to create, foster and promote startup culture which will contribute towards the development of the nation. The event platform provides incredible learning, knowledge sharing, and networking opportunities for the participants and will bring excellent visibility for the participants of the Startup Expo.
The other team members who made Startup Expo 2022 successful were Dr. Mini Namdeo, Dr. Asha Rani, Dr. Sushma Sanasam, Mr. Vishal Tiwari, Dr. Mumtaj Shah, Dr. Priyanka Sharma, Miss Himani Kaith, Mr. Dharamvir Singh, Miss Lalita Singh, Miss Deeksha Rahi, Miss Ishita Mongia, Miss Kollati Renuka, Miss Shinjinee Mishra, Mrs. Chava Jhanavi, Mr. Piyush Pandey, and Student members from E-Cell and Techsarthi team.