Published: 28th October 2021
Funding call: CUSAT's RUSA Start-up Grant to provide Rs 50 lakh for eligible entrepreneurs
According to Dr Bijoy Antony Jose, Deputy Coordinator, CUSAT TBI, the objective is to help students, researchers and potential innovators convert their innovative ideas into full-fledged ventures
The start-up scenario at Cochin University of Science and Technology (CUSAT) is expanding. As a part of boosting the start-up ecosystem, the university has introduced the RUSA Start-up Grant 2021, which will see eligible entrepreneurs bagging investments from the Rs 50 lakh fund. CUSAT's Technology Business Incubator (TBI) called Centre for Innovation, Technology Transfer & Industrial Collaboration (CITTIC) is marching towards becoming the largest in the country once the 10,000 sq ft new building is commissioned. It is said to be the biggest start-up incubation space in the state among the universities.
According to Dr Bijoy Antony Jose, Deputy Coordinator, CUSAT TBI, the objective is to help students, researchers and potential innovators convert their innovative ideas into full-fledged ventures. "This fund is being set up with financial support from Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA) and is managed by CUSAT TBI under CUSATECH Foundation," he said, adding, "CUSATECH Foundation is a section 8 company formed by the university for entrepreneurship development, employability enhancement and to promote innovation. Twenty four start-ups under various domains like electronic hardware, bio-technology, marine science, polymer and software applications bagged investments in the 2020 call."
As of now, Rs 40 lakh has been approved as a grant in multiple instalments, said Dr Bijoy. "Portable electrochemical reader for the effective monitoring of dopamine (Dopometer) for happiness levels and, thereby, identification of its related diseases is a device built using this fund. Other products developed using the grant include a manoeuvrable transport pod for doctors and nurses, an advanced respirator, an inland fleet management system for shipbuilding and management, precise and indigenous pulse oximeter."
"This year’s grant will be disbursed under two heads, namely Product Grant and Idea Grant. Product Grant is for start-ups who are already in operation. They should have completed their prototype or MVP and should be seriously looking at going to the market. This grant will cover the expenses towards final product development, product launch, market promotion, scaling up production and so on. The maximum amount is limited to Rs 10 lakh. No tie-up with the university is needed to apply for this grant," said Dr Bijoy.
The uniqueness about availing of the grant and incubating at CUSAT is that the start-ups can use the software, electronic and biotech facilities at the TBI, he said. "They will also get access to department lab equipment. Core technology-oriented start-ups are a great fit, while the brand new RISE Fablab Setup Idea Grant has been reserved for potential start-ups comprising the faculty, staff or students of the university," he added.
According to him, the screening of the applications will be done by an expert panel set up by the Vice-Chancellor. "It is composed of industry and academic experts," he said. The application can be downloaded from the website cittic.cusat.ac.in/?