KOCHI: The Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) and the Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT-Madras) have signed an agreement to support startups in the maritime sector. The programme is expected to provide a platform for young and talented entrepreneurs to develop products/services in the marine space with financial support provided by the CSL, a statement said on Sunday.
Under the initiative, startups can get up to Rs 50 lakhs as seed grants and Rs 1 crore as prototyping grants. There will be equity funding for startups at the scale-up stage. The agreement was signed between V Kamakoti, director of IIT Madras, and Deepu Surendran, general manager (C-SAS), CSL. “IIT-Madras will act as one of the implementation partners of the initiative and will provide incubation, mentorship, and training to startups selected under the programme,” the release said.
The institute will invite applications online twice a year to identify startups for funding under seed funds, pilot grants, and equity investment schemes. This is part of the startup engagement program ‘USHUS’, launched by the CSL to augment the GOI’s initiatives to encourage and develop an ecosystem in the country for supporting maritime startups from the technical, regulatory, financial, and marketing points of view by bringing the stakeholders together.
Startups selected under the scheme would have to be committed to working on innovation, improvement of products, processes, or services, and present a scalable business model with a high potential for employment generation and wealth creation. Chairman and managing director of the CSL Madhu S Nair, who was also present at the event, said, “As an initial step CSL has declared a corpus of Rs 50 crores for our startup engagement program USHUS”