Kochi: The Startup Village welcomed the proposals in the Kerala state budget saying that the government’s decision to support young entrepreneurs will redefine Kerala’s entrepreneurial culture and investment climate.
Startup Village Chairman Sanjay Vijayakumar said that the Kerala government’s proposals to set aside Rs 25 crore for the Comprehensive Mission on Employment Generation Activities (MEGA) and the Rs 12 crore allocation to provide financial support to 1,000 startups for two years will result in an entrepreneurship boom in the state.
“The challenges rising from the tremendous growth in number of applications at Kerala’s leading incubators, the Technopark TBI and Startup Village, have been addressed in the new budget,” Vijayakumar said.
“The state government has opened a world of opportunities to the students through its proposal to allocate Rs 11 crore for setting up Incubation Support Centres in universities,” Vijayakumar said. “The total outlay for entrepreneurship development is now around Rs 200 crore, up from Rs 43 crore last year,” he added.
He also said, "The Rs 10 crore set aside as Infrastructure Gap will invite more private sector investment into this area."
“The proposals in the Kerala Budget 2015 are commendable in terms of the support measures announced for start-ups and student entrepreneurs in the state. This will undoubtedly encourage more and more young people to start new ventures at home rather than finding well-paid jobs outside the state,” said Infosys co-founder Kris Gopalakrishnan, who is also Chief Mentor of Startup Village. He also lauded the proposal to set aside Rs 5 crore for supporting student entrepreneurs availing bank loans.
Startup Village CEO Pranav Kumar Suresh said that the proposals to increase the loan limit under the State Entrepreneurship Development Scheme to Rs 15 lakh from Rs 10 lakh, as well as to introduce a Performance-linked Support Scheme for Startups and an Incubation-Infrastructure Development Fund were a welcome move. “These steps will help to address the various challenges faced by incubators and start-ups, including funding,” he added.
Other support measures announced in today’s budget included Rs 40 crore for the Entrepreneurship Support Scheme in the MSME sector, Rs 6 crore seed fund support to boost youth entrepreneurship, Rs 50 crore for facilitating government equity participation up to 10% in startups for promoting self-employment and Rs 5 crore for ITI Entrepreneurship Training Hub.