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Telangana wants to be the next start-up hub

By Subhayan Chakraborty and Karan Choudhury
June 13, 2016 10:25 IST

The image is used for representational purpose only.

A final decision on 'Startup Fest', however, is yet to be taken by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion

Pitching as a new start-up haven, India's youngest state Telangana has been trying to emerge as a base for budding companies in the country.

Looking to keep the momentum alive on generating home-grown entrepreneurs, the government is planning an event similar to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Startup India. The event is likely to be organised in Hyderabad in August.

A final decision on 'Startup Fest', however, is yet to be taken by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion and meetings on the matter will be held on Tuesday.

Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is expected to be briefed on it this week.

According to DIPP officials, Telangana has been chosen as a focus state for start-ups based on the initiatives that have been taken by the state government in this space.

"The state government is giving a lot of tax sops and has already started single-window clearances for budding entrepreneurs.

Its T-Hub is one of the best facilities in the country.

That is why we are planning to organise the next start-up event in Hyderabad," said a senior official at DIPP.

T-Hub is a massive 70,000 square foot start-up incubation lab, which is based on public/private partnership between the government of Telangana and premier academic institutions such as International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad; Indian School of Business; NALSAR; and key private-sector leaders.

According to experts, the response to the T-Hub has been significant and the area is completely sold out.

"There are 800 start-ups that have housed themselves in T-Hub.

The government plans to come up with a phase-II and -III of T-Hub in the state.

The focus of the state is to create a start-up ecosystem.

"If the trend continues in the next few years, Telangana might just take over Karnataka as the start-up hub in southern India," said Vanitha Datla, chairperson, Confederation of Indian Industry, Telangana.

In an effort to get more companies from the Silicon Valley to set shop in the state, Telangana's information technology minister K T Rama Rao, along with other officials, has been touring the US scouting for potential investors.

In April, the state unveiled its new information and communication technology policy through which it plans to double IT exports over the next five years.

Under the policy, the government said it would develop a million square feet of workspace dedicated to start-ups over the next five years, of which 300,000 square foot of space would be used to develop phase-II of T-Hub.

The state also plans to bring on board 20 global accelerators and incubators to build plug-and-play workspaces in public-private partnership mode.

The government also plans to mobilise a Rs 2,000-crore (Rs 20-billion) innovation fund to help start-ups.

DIPP is also looking to invite a large number of start-ups as well as incubators at the event.

Refusing to put a number on the potential invitees, the senior official cited above said it would be substantial.

The image is used for representational purpose only. Photograph: Reuters

Subhayan Chakraborty and Karan Choudhury in New Delhi
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