Kotak Mahindra Bank Partners IIM Bangalore and NSRCEL for Developing India’s Future Women Entrepreneurs

Mumbai: Kotak Mahindra Bank Limited (“KMBL/ “Kotak”), Indian Institute of Management Bangalore (IIMB) and NSRCEL- the start-up hub at IIMB announced their CSR partnership to implement the Women Startup Program (WSP 4) to support women by developing their entrepreneurial and managerial skills. The program, launched under KMBL’s CSR project on Education & Livelihood, aims to support ambitious and innovative women entrepreneurs by enabling them to transform their ideas into successful business ventures.

NSCREL at IIMB started the Women Startup Program in 2016 and has constantly reinvented itself and addressed the needs of women entrepreneurs at every stage in their entrepreneurial journeys. It has incubated 400+ female led and owned start-ups.

WSP 4 is the fourth edition of this program by NSRCEL – the centre for excellence on innovation and entrepreneurship at IIMB. WSP 4 will incubate early-stage companies founded by women entrepreneurs that demonstrate the potential to innovate, implement and create social or financial impact, especially in tier-2 and tier-3 cities.

The program commences with a five-week training through Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) to be offered on the digital learning initiative of IIMB, IIMBx platform, for all applicants of WSP 4. In the next phase, shortlisted women will be chosen for a three-month-long virtual pre-incubation program designed by NSRCEL. In the final phase, shortlisted women entrepreneurs will be selected for incubation for 12 months by NSRCEL based on their prototypes and their pitches to the screening committee. During incubation, the entrepreneurs would work towards product/ prototype development. They will be assessed based on their performance and growth against the milestones set at the beginning of the incubation phase. At this stage, top entrepreneurs will also receive funding support to grow their ventures.

Professor Rishikesha T Krishnan, Director, IIM Bangalore, said: “Our CSR partnership with Kotak Mahindra Bank will enhance the entrepreneurial and managerial skills of women business leaders by supporting the incubation and funding needs of their ventures early in the ideation stage. I am confident that the cohort of the program will build a vibrant ecosystem for women-led enterprises across the country.”

Rohit Rao, Joint President & Group Chief CSR Officer, Kotak Mahindra Bank Limited said, “With NSRCEL’s Women Startup Program, Kotak Mahindra Bank is aiming to build the next layer of fruitful business ventures run by women leaders. The participants will go through a rigorous process of selection and training. WSP 4 will give flight to their imagination and dreams. “Naari Shakti” will exhibit itself in full force when top-notch women of excellent calibre will strive to seek funding for their business ideas.”

Kotak Karma is the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) identity of Kotak Mahindra Group companies.