BITS Pilani Unveils ‘Womenpreneur for Bharat 1.0’ with NITI Aayog and ABCF

BITS Pilani’s technology business incubator, Pilani Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development Society (PIEDS), has collaborated with the Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP), supported by the Aditya Birla Capital Foundation, to launch the inaugural edition of ‘Womenpreneur for Bharat 1.0’. This initiative is a concerted effort to foster women-led entrepreneurship, particularly in the tech4good sector, which is aligned with national goals of gender equality, women-led development, and digital inclusion​​​​.

The program was launched during a state workshop titled ‘Facilitating Women-Led Development through Entrepreneurship,’ held at the Dorjee Khandu State Convention Center in Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh, on November 24, 2023. This workshop, organized under the State Support Mission of NITI Aayog and co-hosted by the Government of Arunachal Pradesh and WEP, aimed to bring together stakeholders from various sectors to discuss strategies for advancing women-led development through entrepreneurship​​​​​​.

‘Womenpreneurs for Bharat 1.0’ aims to provide financial support and incubation assistance to women entrepreneurs who are developing solutions for or from Tier 2/3/4 cities in the Northeast, Rajasthan, Haryana, and Jammu and Kashmir. The initiative welcomes both for-profit and non-profit women-led startups that operate across United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) domains, addressing business or societal challenges specific to these geographical areas. The program offers funding up to ₹10 lakhs for qualifying startups, along with comprehensive incubation support from PIEDS, which includes one-on-one mentoring, assistance in accessing markets, and opportunities to secure future investments​​​​​​.

Mrs. Vishakha Mulye, Director of Aditya Birla Capital Foundation and CEO of Aditya Birla Capital Limited, expressed the foundation’s commitment to creating equitable, inclusive, and long-term social and economic growth for the country. She emphasized the importance of providing a platform for nurturing the growth of women entrepreneurs who have the potential to impact many underserved Indians through innovative solutions​​.

Prof. V. Ramgopal Rao, Vice-Chancellor of BITS Pilani, highlighted the need for localized solutions from local entrepreneurs, especially women innovators from the Northeastern states, to address the unique problems of their regions. He expressed optimism about the potential of these women-led innovations to lead the next wave of innovations in India​​.

This collaboration represents a significant step towards empowering women entrepreneurs in India, especially in regions that require specific attention and support. By fostering entrepreneurship among women, the initiative not only aims to address gender inequality but also to contribute substantially to the country’s economic development. According to a Niti Aayog report, India is home to approximately 63 million micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), of which about 20% are owned by women, providing employment to 22 to 27 million people. By encouraging women’s entrepreneurship, India has the potential to establish over 30 million women-owned enterprises, potentially generating 150 to 170 million jobs​



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