Hyderabad will be India's Start-up Capital: KTR

Admitting high failure rate of start-up companies, he claimed that materialisation of a few ideas or concepts would generate employment.
Hyderabad will be India's Start-up Capital: KTR

HYDERABAD: Terming Telangana as a start-up state, information technology minister KT Rama Rao has said its capital city will be known in the coming years as the start-up capital of India.

He was speaking to the media at T-Hub’s Catalyst building on the IIIT campus at Gachibowli here on Friday.

Announcing that the 70,000-sft energy-efficient building would be inaugurated by governor ESL Narasimhan and veteran industrialist Ratan Tata, Rama Rao said the motto would be ‘Walk in with an idea, walk out with a product’. Admitting that the failure rate of start-up companies was quite high, he claimed that materialisation of a few ideas or concepts would generate employment for several thousands of youth.

In a complete public-private partnership model of incubation, experts from the city’s Indian School of Business will provide the business mentorship whereas technology experts from the Indian Institute of Technology-Hyderabad and the Indian Institute of Information Technology-Hyderabad will meet technology-related intellectual needs of the start-up firms.

Further, the city’s Nalsar University of Law will provide support regarding intellectual property, legal and patenting rights.

The state government’s IT secretary, who will be the only government official on the T-Hub board of directors comprising CEOs and academicians, will assess the potential of a concept by a strict screening process and decide the quantum of fund assistance that could be granted. The T-Hub incubation fund at present is Rs 10 crore which is sanctioned by the state government.

“This is not a building. It is an ecosystem, an incubator of incubators. Representatives from giants like Google, Microsoft, Nasscom and various incubators of universities will co-exist here. It is the first-of-its-kind government initiative and it is not for profit,” said Rama Rao.

Speaking about the cost dynamics, the minister said the whole cost was borne by the government. “The government is bearing the expenditure initially but it wants the T-Hub to be self-reliant. We will be opening T-Hub franchises across the globe,” he said and promised an Internet speed of 1 GB per second.

As many as 150 start-ups have been screened from over 800 applicants. Based on their need, be it a fixed desk or a flexible desk in the building, they will be paying a rent of Rs 6,000 and Rs 4,500 respectively. The building’s seating capacity is over 900. In the second phase, the state government will develop another campus at Raidurgam adjacent to the upcoming Gaming City. “This is a 70,000 sft building but the one at Raidurgam would will have office space of 3 lakh sft. It will be ready in three years. The aim is to have a USD 100-million fund for the T-Hub and set up Hyderabad as the start-up capital of India,” he said.

World-class Building

The Catalyst, as it is called, is an Energy Conservation Building Codes compliant structure spread over 70,000 sft on ground plus five floors. The high-performance glass building cuts down the external heat gain, whereas solar roof panels, LED light fixtures and motion sensors enable daylight harvesting, thereby reducing energy consumption.  A breakaway from standard office spaces, the building has space categorised based on one’s functions. Named as propels, accelerators, launch pads, breakout zones, discussion surfaces, meeting rooms, conference hall, the building also houses pantry on each floor and a cafeteria on the ground floor. To ensure complete utilisation of space, two mezzanine floors, using containers used in shipping yards, have also been constructed. “The whole office space has come up in about 6 months and except chairs we have not bought anything from the market. Everything is designed and built for the best utilisation. One who is using the space for 15 to 20 hours should not feel tired,” said Gokul Krishna of W-Design Pvt Ltd who has designed the space.

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