Special Training for The Startups held in the lead up to ‘NewBiz Startup Summit & Awards 2021’
New Business Age Pvt Ltd, the publishers of New Business Age monthly magazine and Aarthik Abhiyan National Daily, has organised the Special Training for The Startups, a one-day interactive training session, on October 29. The programme was held in Kathmandu as part of the “Kumari Bank NewBiz Startup Summit & Awards 2021” which will be held on November 26. The event was attended by more than 1,500 participants through virtual as well as physical means.
During the training session, chairman of the Startup and Innovation Committee under the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI), Ranjit Acharya said that it’s time for the government to clearly define “startups”. He further said that the government should bring additional policy to develop the startup ecosystem.
Acharya added that one should not wait for the right time to start a venture. “Right time to start a startup business is now. Entrepreneurs should be able to adapt to any situation and time. Only then can a person become an entrepreneur,” he said.
President of the National Innovation Center Dr Mahabir Pun pointed towards the society as the main reason for the lack of entrepreneurship development in Nepal. “There is still a trend of going abroad among the Nepalis. Now, in order to develop entrepreneurship, we need to develop entrepreneurship culture, especially the startups. You can't become a startup entrepreneur just by following the footsteps of your parents,” he said. The Magsaysay Award winner added that the government representatives need to carefully study about startups and entrepreneurship. “Those who lead from the society without entrepreneurial culture cannot understand startup business and will not be able to bring a relevant policy and implement it. Therefore, they need to study this issue now,” he mentioned.
He also expressed his commitment to help any startup entrepreneur through the National Innovation Center. “We will help to raise capital investment if you have plans for business,” he said, adding, “We are ready to help with ideas, but one has to work hard.”
Likewise, Ashutosh Tiwari, founder of Safal Partners, said that getting into entrepreneurship is like jumping into an ocean. "Entrepreneurship is all about taking risks. However, even if the risk is high, the possibility of return in business is equally high, so don't panic,” he opined.
He also said that age, religion or caste does not stop one from becoming an entrepreneur. Nor, it is not necessary to study in the US to become an entrepreneur. “Anyone can start a venture. Even if it fails, it is not bad in itself. Rather we can learn from that failure and start another one,” he added.
In addition, Amit Agrawal, co-founder and director of Khalti Digital Wallet, said that some areas of the country are still lagging behind in development of digital payment. “Even Kathmandu’s drinking water bill has not been digitized yet. We have not been able to provide our services there even if we wanted to,” he said. He also shared his entrepreneurial journey and explained the audience about the success of Sparrow SMS and Khalti Digital Wallet. Stating that Khalti will be transformed into a public company in the upcoming fiscal year, Agrawal informed that an IPO will be issued to the public within three years.
Another speaker Anushka Shrestha, founder of the Nepali indigenous sweets brands Makkuse and Miss Nepal World 2019, shared her experience of getting into a business. She said that one should not have the mentality that there is no opportunity in Nepal. “There are many possibilities. Therefore, to do something in Nepal, one has to look through the eyes of entrepreneurship,” she said.
Madan Lamsal, chairman of New Business Age Pvt Ltd, said that Newbiz Startups Summit and Awards would help startups by helping them tap the benefits that the government offers them. He also said that the event would help them get noticed and heard by investors and policymakers.
“We are organising this event by focusing on entrepreneurship that aligns with the corporate mission of our organisation. We want to support the economic development model led by the private sector,” said Lamsal, who is also the Editor-in-Chief of New Business Age magazine and Aarthik Abhiyan National Daily. “International organisations, banking sector, private sector and government are making efforts to promote and support startups. They had helped them to some extent. But that is not enough. This event is to complement those initiatives,” he added.
Pavitra Gautam, co-founder and CEO of Karkhana, a company working in the field of education, moderated the programme.
‘The Search for Nepali Unicorn’
The final selection of the winners for the NewBiz Startup Summit and Award 2021 will be completed by November 16 and the grand finale will be held on November 26. As per the organisers, a jury of independent experts has been working for the selection of the startups.
The slogan of the first edition of the award is ‘Search for Nepali Unicorn’. There is an international practice of referring to a startup with business of more than Rs 1 billion as unicorn.
Startups with new and disruptive ideas will be selected and awarded with cash prizes of Rs 400,000. The companies will be awarded in eight categories. The categories are Best Startup in Agro Business, Best Startup in Fintech, Best Startup in Internet of Things, Best Startup in E-commerce, Best Startup in Service Sector, Best Startup in Production/Manufacturing Sector, Best Startup (overall) and Best Successful Startup (startup in the past, now a success).
The title sponsor of the NewBiz Startup Summit and Award is Kumari Bank Limited, and the co-sponsor is Garima Bikas Bank Limited. Similarly, Citizen Life Insurance Co Limited, IME Remit, NLG Insurance Co Limited and Nimbus Group have supported the event. Mansiri Trading is the infra partner and Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI) and Nepalese Young Entrepreneurs Forum (NYEF) are associate partners of the Summit and Awards. Mango Tech is the technical partner of the programme.