Products by grassroots innovators, outstanding traditional knowledge holders as well as student creativity based innovative products will be available to millions of customers by virtue of a new partnership between NIFientreC and Amazon India, said the Ministry of Science and Technology on Tuesday.
An MoU was signed between NIF Incubation and Entrepreneurship Council (NIFientreC), a Technology Business Incubator (TBI) hosted by National Innovation Foundation (NIF), an autonomous institute of the Department of Science and Technology (DST), and Amazon India today for online distribution of the product of grassroots innovations, student creativity based innovations and outstanding traditional knowledge-based ready to market products, informed the ministry.
As per the ministry, NIFientreC was established in the year 2015 with financial support from the DST for incubation and commercialization of technological ideas and innovations of grassroots innovators, outstanding traditional knowledge holders and students across the country.
This MoU between Amazon, and NIFientreC, follows just a couple of days after the declaration of 16 January 2022 as the National Start-up Day by the Prime Minister of India and the announcement that the current decade would be the 'techade' of India to take the start-up culture to the far-flung areas of the country, stated the ministry.
According to the ministry, the MoU signed by Er Rakesh Maheshwari, Executive Director, NIFientreC, and Shri Sumit Sahay, Director, Amazon Seller Services Private Limited (ASSPL), will help strengthen the commercial dissemination of innovative products from local startups and boost India's startup culture in line with these announcements.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Gulshan Rai, Chairperson, NIFientreC, said, "With the fast-paced digital transformation that's happening in the country right now, there could not be a better time for grassroots entrepreneurs to consider taking their innovations directly to the consumers all over India."
Manish Tiwary, Vice President, Amazon India, said that the partnership with NIFientreC is aimed at bringing the benefits of digitization and e-commerce to grassroots entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs and taking forward the student innovations from rural areas to sell to millions of Amazon customers in India and across the globe.
"It is a milestone in India's innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem, and grassroots innovators will be brought closer to the consumer than ever before. This is an inclusivity paradigm that the rest of the world may want to replicate," said Dr Vipin Kumar, Director, NIF.
The MoU will accelerate the grassroots innovation delivery to the common people of the country, boosting the local economy and creating livelihoods. It will empower innovators from the deepest pockets of the country to leverage the benefits of inclusive e-commerce.
While the product offerings by mainstream entrepreneurs and those offered by start-ups turned unicorns are not new, the MoU will make innovations that are being done in rural parts of the country and stem from common people's wisdom, available universally. The consumers will benefit by getting more choices, and since these innovations have their genesis in addressing of an unmet need in a particular locality, it can initiate a journey towards providing inclusive innovations to society and the world at large.
Post successful onboarding of these businesses, Amazon will also create a storefront to boost the discoverability of these rural innovations among customers, said the ministry.
It further stated that additionally, through this MoU, both NIFientreC and Amazon would ensure a capacity building of grassroots innovators regularly through masterclasses, workshops, and other interactive training programmes by engaging industry and subject matter experts so that they can march ahead in the start-up movement of the country at par with rest of the nation.
They will be periodically trained on fundamental aspects of being a successful e-commerce participant so that upon getting on-boarded, they can be self-reliant, create visibility for their products, generate demand, and respond to it to have them reach even at the last mile, said the ministry.
The MoU signing ceremony was followed by a workshop for the grassroots innovators and entrepreneurs supported by NIFientreC with trainers from Amazon so that they could take a deep dive in the contemporary useful concepts of e-commerce and keep pace with the changing times of distribution mechanisms, it added. (ANI)