Developing a Sustainable Campus Based Startup Incubation Eco-System
International Conference on Innovation & Entrepreneurship, Forthcoming
13 Pages Posted: 5 May 2017
Date Written: March 4, 2017
Startup-hub is an ambitious initiative of academia industry partnership that aims to develop a sustainable eco-system for drawing technical higher education students towards entrepreneurship and supporting their efforts by creating a self-sustaining startup incubator.
The incubator project spans the entire value chain beginning with development of entrepreneurial learning eco-system in the institutions, creation of shared logistics incubator, networking with industry components for drawing startup intelligence to the campus, facilitating “go to market” strategy and concept testing and finally finding angel and growth investors for the startups.
The first step was development of shared infrastructure for incubator which comprised of tinkering labs, co-working space, knowledge centre and project development & testing centre in the campus.
A panel of experts from each branch of engineering and allied fields was formed and available for consultation at specified times to the incubator. To develop an eco-system for sustainable learning of entrepreneurship, innovative simulated virtual business world was developed and students were engaged with this virtual world for identification of business opportunities and promote startups to fulfill existing needs or expand the desire portfolio by coming out with new products or services. Banks and venture capitalists in the virtual world came forward to fund and exit. Students were armed with a base amount of virtual capital to act as buyers of products, services and equity. The base of entrepreneurship was expanded to include social ventures, agri-business and ventures that disrupted the value chain from farm to consumer. Students were mentored by industry experts and periodic visits of startup veterans and industry leaders were arranged. Function specific labs and micro labs within, could catalyze student ideas into prototypes which were then tested through the simulation lab in neighboring communities.
Once the entrepreneurial skill development process started rolling, there was a spurt in ideas for business as well as service offering to make life easier for people. Students were mentored to take up different roles in startups before venturing on their own. Society too linked up in projects of their concern. Idea flow and funds flow was sustained as the value chain integrated diverse components of entrepreneurship.
Keywords: Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Startup, Campus Incubator, Venture Capital
JEL Classification: O31
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation