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Powered accelerator announces 2nd cohort of women entrepreneurs in energy domain

POWERED Accelerator

22 January 2019, India:

POWERED Accelerator has selected nine women to be a part of its Second Cohort and will offer them financial and business support to help them develop their businesses and deliver access to energy solutions across India.

The accelerator programme, spread over three months will include mentorship in various domains, one-on-one interactions with industry experts and investors, peer community building, showcase opportunity and access to a range of services and support.

Selected companies from the 2nd cohort will be supported with an equity-free seed fund of up to $10,000.

In April last year, the UK Government’s Department for International Development (DFID), Shell Foundation (a UK-based charity), Government of India’s Department of Science and Technology, and Zone Startups India announced the POWERED Accelerator – an entrepreneurship programme focused on twin Sustainable Development Goals of Energy and Diversity.

The programme has since hosted its first cohort comprising 10 startups, extended equity- free seed fund of $10,000 to 6 startups and hosted a bootcamp for 5 very early-stage startups.

Adritha Subbiah, Energy and Green Growth Analyst, DFID India, said, “With the success of the first cohort, DFID is keen to continue its support for this transformative platform helping businesses scale up and increase their social impact. The 2nd cohort has a range of businesses from diverse geographies working on energy access, waste to energy, energy efficiency, and clean energy livelihoods. Opportunities for greater inclusion and sustainability are unlocked by working with these women led businesses moving us closer to the twin sustainable development goals of energy access and diversity.”

dritha Subbiah, Energy and Green Growth Analyst, DFID India, said, “With the success of the first cohort, DFID is keen to continue its support for this transformative platform helping businesses scale up and increase their social impact. The 2nd cohort has a range of businesses from diverse geographies working on energy access, waste to energy, energy efficiency, and clean energy livelihoods.”

Adritha Subbiah, added, “Opportunities for greater inclusion and sustainability are unlocked by working with these women led businesses moving us closer to the twin sustainable development goals of energy access and diversity.”

The top nine women selected for the Second Cohort were selected from a cumulative application pool of 150+ applications. The entrepreneurs were evaluated based on the applicant’s background, innovativeness, the scale of impact, problem solution fit, clarity of thought, and programme fit.

The selected entrepreneurs will now receive support for one year to scale their business including a 4 week residential mentoring programme and access to an equity-free seed fund upto $10,000 each.

Sam Parker, Director, Shell Foundation, said, “At Shell Foundation, we are proud to support the continued progress of the POWERED Accelerator, helping female entrepreneurs working on innovative off-grid energy access technologies. “

Sam Parker added, “We believe this 2nd cohort can be transformative in building long-term business solutions to meet India’s off-grid energy needs, delivering employment and new technologies that will positively improve the lives and livelihoods of people in low-income rural and urban areas.”

The Second Cohort, comprising of startups in areas ranging across manufacturing solar products, smart energy solutions, waste to energy solutions, and livelihood creating models is as follows:

  1. Dr. Vanita Prasad, Founder and Director – Product and Technology R&D – REVY Environmental Solution
  2. Monika Jha, Founder and CEO – Cydee Technologies Pvt. Ltd
  3. Debashree Padhi, CEO – DD Biosolution Technology Pvt. Ltd
  4. Bhavana Chittawar, Head of Business Development and Product Development – FinEffi Energy Solutions
  5. Manvi Dhawan, CEO & CFO – GTarang Energy Solutions
  6. Susmita Bhattacharjee, MD & Founder – Pushan Renewable Energy Pvt. Ltd
  7. Vidya Amarnath, Director – Paterson Energy Pvt. Ltd.
  8. Disha Ahuja, Founder – Prakriti Biosystems Engineering
  9. Rukmani Katara, CEO – Durga Energy

The Department for International Development (DFID) India is a United Kingdom government department responsible for fostering development partnership between the UK and India. The goal of the department is to eliminate world poverty and promote sustainable development.

Department of Science & Technology (DST) was established in May 1971, with the objective of promoting new areas of Science & Technology and to play the role of a nodal department for organizing, coordinating, and promoting S&T activities in the country.

Shell Foundation is an independent UK-registered charity established by the Shell Group in 2000 to create and scale new solutions to global development challenges. Shell Foundation works with a small number of entrepreneurial partners to identify the market failures that underpin many of the world’s problems and co-creates new social enterprises to solve them.  

Zone Startups is a global technology accelerator, and early stage investment fund, with multiple accelerator programmes and entrepreneurship initiatives across Canada, India, and Vietnam. In India, the flagship programme is Zone Startups India, established in 2014 as a partnership between Ryerson Futures Inc. and BSE Institute; partly funded by Department of Science & Technology, GOI.

(Image – POWERED Accelerator)

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