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FAQs


Incubation & Funding

  • What all does incubation suite offered by the program include?
    Incubation offered through the program by CIIE includes -

    Physical incubation (i.e. well equipped office space with networking, telephony, conferencing, admin support) et al. The incubatees can access all state-of-the-art facilities available at IIM Ahmedabad and CIIE. 

    Mentoring support from IIMA faculty, academicians, industry experts, MNRE officials among others

    Seed-funding - Immediate support of up to Rs 20 lacs; follow on funding if required. Support in raising further rounds of fund.

    Networking - Access to wide network comprising of industry partners, IIMA faculty and alumni

    Operational Support - CIIE staff and IIMA students provide strategic and operational support in desired domains.

  • Does CIIE take equity against the support provided?
    Yes, we do take stake of 1-10% for the support and funding provided by us to our incubatees. The money shall be invested in tranches on achievement of milestones set by the start-up and us jointly. For follow-on and additional round of funding, CIIE shall have the right of first refusal to make equity investment through its incubation funds.

  • Does the incubatee necessarily have to be based out of CIIE?
    No. In this world of technology, we believe that we can effectively work even with distantly located ventures. We call it virtual incubation. Through regular meetings, conference calls et al we are able to mentor, add value and monitor the start-up. However, we still prefer the teams being physically located within CIIE to enable us to interact with you on a daily basis and learn about your issues before they become big.

  • We don't need incubation & mentoring and just need seed-funding. Is that a possibility?
    We believe that incubation and funding should go hand-in-hand. Incubation is critical to be able to monitor the venture and make our investment more useful for the start-up. Hence, we do not provide seed-funding alone.

  • We are a well-funded venture but need incubation and mentoring support. Can we seek just incubation support?
    Yes, you definitely can. In fact, the chances of your getting incubated at CIIE are a notch higher if you are not seeking immediate financial support.

  • It is great to get seed-funded but this may meet only 6-12 months of our requirements. We don't want to start-up something and run out of funds soon. How does CIIE help us?
    Subject to your progress, we may provide you additional investment of up to Rs 25 lacs. CIIE is in the process of raising an incubation fund in collaboration with industry partners and government agencies, through which we hope to be able to invest up to Rs 3-4 crore in your venture. CIIE shall have the right of first refusal of investing as equity or debt. Through our network of investors, we shall help you raise additional funds as soon as the business model and technology is more or less proven.

EIRs

  • Do we need to have a complimentary team even at the time of applying for being an EIR?
    We prefer if the applicants already have an existing team or a set of complimentary people with strong commitment to join the team in the near future. At the stage that we get involved in, too many people may not be a good idea as well. 2-3 members is ideal. We know that putting together a team is not always easy and therefore individuals with high enthusiasm, relevant background and strong interest shall be considered to be the EIRs.

  • Can CIIE help me build my team to make my application stronger?
    Yes. Since we expect the applicants for the EIR program to be more than we may accept, we would try to introduce the applicants to each other with the goal to team up people and build complimentary teams before the application. This is despite our firm belief that co-founders of ventures should be good friends much before starting up and the duration of the program may not be enough to build strong friendships. In case you fail to build a team, your individual application shall still be considered.

  • As an EIR, what all would I be expected to do?
    Once recruited, the EIRs shall be a part of our team and work with us to achieve our objective, while they work towards their personal goals. The Phase 1 of the program is the scouting phase and therefore we expect the EIRs to spend a good amount of their time identifying and evaluating the technologies and developing a viable business model around it. Since this phase has a heavy element of interaction with external agencies, good amount of travelling shall be required. Towards the end of Phase 1, stress should be on creating a presentable business plan and therefore you may decide to work out of your preferred location.

  • What are the ways in which an EIR shall scout for technologies and then evaluate them?
    CIIE shall invite innovations from across the world for the "Top Innovator Award" and chance of getting their research commercialized by getting incubated or licensing to entrepreneurs. In addition to the award, the EIR shall have access to patent database, MNRE and other partner technology database, and of course the internet to figure out the technology that fascinates them. Moreover, we also expect you to travel across the country and meet up with researchers in academic as well as corporate research labs to identify feasible technology and help us build a database of innovations for the Top Innovator Award.
    Having developed a consideration set, you shall carry out the technology and financial due diligence of the technology to understand its differentiation, scalability and viability. This shall be carried out through interaction with technical, legal and industry experts.

  • Does CIIE cover all my costs for the Phase 1? Do I get paid during the Phase 2 as well?
    Depends. Since we expect teams with some amount of experience between them to apply for the EIR program, it may be safe to assume that you have some savings to support you. We are open to providing a debt/stipend (up to Rs 10k per person p.m.) in addition to covering your travel costs, if you really need it. We would like to evaluate your financial situation before deciding on the same. Once you have received the seed-funding in the Phase 2, you shall be expected to take care of your basic expenses through the same.

  • My opportunity cost is much higher than what I expect to get paid during the program?
    We are glad that you understand the concept of opportunity cost and you'd make a good entrepreneur. We are looking for individuals interested in creating value for themselves and society in the long run and understand the concept of "postponing your gratifications". Therefore, we expect you to recover your opportunity cost multi-fold times, by developing your venture rather than negotiating for a higher stipend.

  • When EIR moves to Ahmedabad for the Phase 1, what all facilities would be provided?
    Apart from the office space with basic infrastructure like network, telephone connection etc, you shall have access to various other facilities at IIM Ahmedabad. Although, we can't promise at this stage, we shall also try our best to facilitate basic accommodation for you within the campus.

  • If we get through the Phase 1, what are our chances of making it to Phase 2 i.e. getting incubated and funded?
    The chances depend on your ability to identify the right idea and create a viable business model around it. That's all we can say as of now.

  • Tell us more about Phase 2.
    Please refer to the "For Start-Ups" tab in the menu above and the Incubation and Start-up sub-section within the FAQs.

Innovators

  • In what form do I get the cash award?
    The Award consists of a total cash grant of Rs 5 lacs to the innovator(s). We would like to provide the award to the individuals rather than organization you represent. However, the individual researchers and/or organization they represent may decide to accept the cash award through the organization and route it into their research.

  • Does the program sign an NDA with the innovators?
    If you have a patent around your technology, you already have a protection and NDA may not be required. In case, you want to sign an NDA we would. In cases where we sign the NDA, your details shall still be made available to EIRs and our advisors for their assessment of the technology in addition to our core team.

  • Our innovation is a joint effort by various researchers. How would we split the prize between us?
    We would like the inventor teams to decide that for themselves. We would prefer that the prize be split based on contribution of each member to the invention.

  • The innovation (and patent), although done by us, is actually a property of the organization that we represent rather than us. How does our organization gain out of this?
    Apart from the recognition for the organization, it may also decide to take a part of the cash award. In case the rights to the technology are held by the organization, they shall also get the licensing fee and royalty wherever applicable.