21 Oct 2019 19:07 IST

IIM Kozhikode announces drive to support women entrepreneurs

This is done in association with oil PSU Mangalore Refineries and Petrochemicals (MRPL)

IIM Kozhikode and Mangalore Refineries and Petrochemicals Ltd (MRPL) announced a special drive to support women entrepreneurs in the country. Labelled as La Eve, meaning ‘the woman’, this initiative aims to identify innovative, promising women founded start-ups to provide a comprehensive start-up support programme.

The initiative would be steered by the institute’s entrepreneurship development centre, Laboratory for Innovation, Venturing and Entrepreneurship or IIM-K Live, with the support of the start-up fund of the oil PSU, MRPL. Last year, MRPL entered into an MoU with the institute and since then, it has provided seed funds to over 11 start-ups incubated at IIM-K Live.

Under the La Eve — a drive to support women-led start-ups, IIM-K Live would identify women founded, innovation-led start-ups and provide incubation that would provide access to the institute’s intellectual, network and infrastructural resources. MRPL would provide seed fund assistance from the start-funding initiative under start-up India programme.

Full potential

Prof Debashis Chatterjee, Director, IIM Kozhikode, said, “No economy can grow at its full potential if a section of human resource is not actively contributing to it. Promotion and support of women entrepreneurship can contribute significantly to the country’s economic goals”.

Prof Keyoor Purani, Executive Director, IIMK Live, said, “Given the larger socio-economic context, a large number of educated and skilled women prefer to work on their own terms compared to the traditional jobs. Technological developments have further facilitated location and time neutrality favouring many of them to start-up and lead ventures that create economic value and make social impact. This trend, if channelled well can contribute significantly to the innovation-led entrepreneurship.”

Professional services, workshops

A spokesperson from MRPL said, “The Start up India website notes that female led ventures perform 63 per cent better than male led companies in terms of return on investment with women showing unparalleled willingness and capacity to organise, develop, and manage a business venture. Recognising this, MRPL is honoured to be associated with IIM-K Live in this unique programme — La Eve — aimed at supporting women entrepreneurs.”

New ventures that fit the definition of start-ups, are registered under the Companies’ Act of India and are founded by majority of women founders are eligible to apply. Early stage start-ups with the minimum viable product or at least a proof of concept would be considered. Selected start-ups would be provided seed support funds of up to ₹25 lakh, structured incubation program with task-based mentoring, access to professional services, co-working space, subsidised training and workshops and several other benefits on campus.