Sat, 23 Mar, 2019

Ignite EDC Innovation Hub - to stimulate Goan economy

Ignite EDC Innovation Hub, which has recently opened its doors to tech start-ups, offers support and mentoring to budding business ideas and also co-working space to mature IT companies making it an important part of state’s ecosystem. The Goan Everyday recently went on a tour of the facility and spoke to the team behind this initiative

22nd October 2018, 03:48 Hrs

Karan Sehgal  

Every time you speak to a tech start-up in Goa, its founders complain about lack of infrastructure, poor internet connectivity and to top it all sheer unaffordable rent for office space. What they don’t complain is how a lot of young IT start-ups fizzle out because they don’t get right mentorship in the initial stages.  

In order to provide a solution to the tech community of these two fundamental problems, EDC took sole initiative to build ‘Ignite EDC Innovation Hub’ recently.  

This newly launched facility is on the fourth floor of EDC House itself in Panaji and it has world class infra in terms of top quality internet connection, office desks, private cabins, meeting rooms, support of seasoned mentors and almost anything that a budding start-up can ask for.  

Ignite EDC Innovation Hub works both as an incubation centre for young start-ups and also as a provider of co-working space to IT companies, which have been there for a while.  

Ryan Carvalho, IT Consultant, EDC, said, “We have a 12 month program for start-ups, which want to incubate with us. During this time, we help these companies in structuring their business ideas and as they move on we may even help them in getting access to market and funding. Basically, we help you in taking your idea from a very early stage and then bringing it to a point where you will survive on your own and become a successful company.”  

Carvalho added that Ignite EDC Innovation Hub also offers co-working space to companies, which have a stable business and only want space to operate from. Even the duration of 12 month program for incubatees can be extended depending upon the decision of the start-up itself and of EDC management.  

Ravindra A Manerkar, Operations Head of Ignite EDC Innovation Hub, already has experience in mentoring companies in Bangalore. Manerkar explained how they have an experienced set of members on board of governance, who will help tech start-ups in excelling.  

“On our board of governance, we have members from IIT Goa, BITS Pilani-Goa, Chairman of Dempo Group. We have good representation from the industry, academia and investors. A member of Kae Capital (venture capitalists) is also on our board,” Manerkar explained.  

He further said, “We have an external consultant, who is helping incubators like IIM Bangalore and who also has his own incubator at the moment. This helps us to leverage ecosystem across the country and not just limited to what Goa has to offer.”  

In nutshell, the idea at Ignite EDC Innovation Hub is to provide all kinds of support to start-ups in the state. The intention is obviously to boost entrepreneurship in Goa, which will ultimately result in  

employment generation.  

A tour of the innovation hub clearly shows that EDC has made a lot of effort to provide world-class facilities to IT start-ups and companies.

Carvalho said, “We have created great working space with desks, private cabins (which have access  

control), meeting rooms and pitch rooms. Although the focus remains on incubation, we have even built space for co-working. Essentially, we have created a high quality centre that could help the Goan economy.”  

Manerkar added, “The whole space is divided into zones. We have flexi zones, where you have flexi desks. Then, we have dedicated desks. All these options come with different pricing.”  

Simply put, the team behind Ignite EDC Innovation Hub has taken care of all scenarios when it comes to space requirements of a tech company. If you need dedicated desks for yourself, they have it. If you want flexible arrangement and are fine with desk being anywhere subject to its availability, they have flexi desks.  

If you want a cabin for four promoters because they don’t want to be disturbed, they have it. Moreover, cabin will also have access control, which means only you and your team will be able to get access to it and no one else.  

Ignite EDC Innovation Hub is open 24x7, which means you are absolutely free to go there and work whenever you want and timings are not a hurdle at all.  

Manerkar said, “We have two internet connections by two different service providers. So in case one doesn’t work, people can always use the other one. If you are a team, you will have private wi-fi connection only for yourself. If you are a developer and you need rock solid wired connection, we have provision for that as well.”  

Apart from this, there is technology support to companies at the hub from the likes of Amazon, Google and Microsoft. Carvalho said, “We are working towards having funding partners. As the start-ups get better, we will expose them to venture capitalists as well. EDC will put together this framework with their network and also that of the board.”  

Ignite EDC Innovation Hub clearly has started on a positive note as two start-ups have already started working out from there and three more are in finalisation stage. With time, this 78-seater hub is all set to help a lot of companies in sailing successfully through their initial 

challenging years.

Space and support to start-ups 

and mature IT companies  

Recently opened Ignite EDC Innovation Hub has a 12 month program for start-ups. During this phase, the experienced team at hub will help the start-ups in blossoming into successful companies

For mature IT companies, the hub has various options in co-working space, which includes dedicated desks, flexi desks, meeting rooms, pitch rooms and etc. All these facilities are open for start-ups as well

The hub has a seasoned board of governance with members from IIT Goa, BITS Pilani-Goa

Chairman of Dempo Group and also a venture capitalist firm

The hub provides two internet connections by two different service providers. So in case one doesn’t work, people can always use the other one

Ignite EDC Innovation Hub clearly has started on a positive note as two start-ups have already started working out from there and three more are in finalisation stage

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