Countdown to the Million Dollar Challenge – Forty startups from about ten countries have been selected to head to the grand finale at the Vizag Fintech Festival

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Vizag: The Government of Andhra Pradesh, instrategic collaboration with its challenge partners, DCF Ventures and BizofIT, have selected 40 startups globally, from Fintech, Agritech and Emergetech, for the finale of the $1 M challenge. The shortlisting of the startups was completed after the roadshow in Bengaluru on Wednesday.

Twenty-four startups have won $ 10,000, two are tied with the award of $ 5,000 each. Due to the superior quality of the startups and the overwhelming response, an additional list of 14 consolation prizes have been awarded to 14 startups, who will be pitching at the Grand Finale. All the 40 startups have an opportunity to exhibit at the Vizag Fintech Festival to more than 1,500 global delegates comprising of VCs, angel investors etc.,. There are almost 40% startups who have attracted informal interest from the investors through these roadshows already and these investors are likely to be present on the demo day.

A total of 14 startups were selected from the Fintech category, whereas 15 and 11 startups were selected from the Emergetech and Agritech categories respectively.

The startups were selected after roadshows in San Francisco, Chicago, New York, Tel Aviv, London, Paris, Hong Kong and Bengaluru. An equity-free funding of first prize of $150,000 (~INR 1 crore),second prize of $100,000 (~INR 70 lakh) will be awarded to the winners. Finalists in each category will get ~INR 7 lakh each to set up their business in Vizag, Andhra Pradesh. $1M Challenge winners will be announced by email and on the vizagfintechfestival.comsite at 6:00 pm on October 25th. The Awards ceremony will be held at the Vizag Fintech Festival on the same day.

The finalists and winners of the challenge will also be supported by Fintech Valley Vizag in enabling them to set up operations and grow their business in the state of Andhra Pradesh.

“Across the world, we have seen unique innovations through the roadshows. The challenge proved to be a great platform to showcase expertise to enable a better socioeconomic society. Andhra Pradesh’s initiative through this challenge will only boost the Indian digital transformation and also bring the best solutions from around the world to the people of India” said Mr JA Chowdary, Special Chief Secretary and IT Advisor to the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh.

“The entire selection process through the roadshows were enriching. We received the wholehearted support of the Andhra Pradesh Government. They made the entire process purely meritocratic, transparent and with complete autonomy to the challenge partners. The startups across fintech, emergetech and agritech were exciting, and the ones most relevant to the Indian geography will be pitching at the festival” said Ms. Lakshmi Potluri, the CEO of DCF Ventures.