The balmy shores of India’s foremost holiday destination – Goa – pull vacationers from far and wide. But if you scratch beneath the surface of the lazy veneer that the state so famously adorns, you’d be surprised to discover young and energetic entrepreneurs, dreamers and hustlers, who have come together from various corners of India to give shape to their entrepreneurial dreams.
Yes, Goa is certainly about the sun, the sand, the sundowners and frolic. But it is also about innovation, technology, an enviable work-life balance and a progressive government that is a big boost to entrepreneurship in Goa.
No surprise then, entrepreneurship in Goa is on the rise. From the inspiring story of one determined woman turning a corner shop into a widely patronized restaurant – Martins, to homegrown heroes such as Fleetrover, Browntape, Prototyze and Vacation labs, startups in Goa are taking the world by the storm.
In fact, innovation has always been synonymous with the state that provides an ideal environment to nurture the mind as well as businesses - think clean, green and peaceful locales, the not-so-crazy traffic, cheaper office spaces, supportive government policies and constantly developing infrastructure.
A boost to the startups in Goa
The government of Goa released a start-up policy aimed at making Goa a top start-up destination in 2025.
“We want to feature in 25 top start-up destinations in Asia by 2025. Goans can avail benefits of the policy and launch start-ups at different locations across Goa,” said IT Minister Rohan Khaunte. (Read more here)
The initiative will provide assistance to Goan entrepreneurs, generating employment for at least 5,000 Goans over the next five years.
Incubation in Goa
Encouraging and mentoring young minds to pursue entrepreneurship and supporting several fledgling startups in IT and food tech are the incubation centres in Goa such as CIBA (Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration), earlier Agnel Entrepreneurship Development Institute, leading the entrepreneurial wave that has washed over the state in the past few years.
CIBA, a public-private venture, was set up in April 2012 with an aim to support the startup ecosystem in the state through mentorship, co-working space and funding at the seed stage. Owing to the state focus on unconventional areas such as food processing, clean technologies and solid waste management, several young entrepreneurs have sought incubation in Goa, and found the perfect environment and support to grow their business ideas into reality.
In short, Goa boasts of a vigorous infrastructure apart from incubation facilities and pristine environment that is at the core of the pursuit of innovation. In addition, a large number of engineering graduates in the state, natural fluency in the English language, a slow pace of life and better work-life balance are all incentives for entrepreneurs to set shop on the sunny shores of Goa that are fast becoming the innovation hubs of India, and for good reason, too.
7th November 2016
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