Scheme for Scale-up Support to Establishing Incubation Centres
Scheme for Scale-up Support to Establishing Incubation Centres
The Government of India has established Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) at NITI Aayog. The purpose of this mission is to promote innovation and entrepreneurship across the nation. The Government has recognised a need to create world-class incubation centres in various parts of the country with adequate infrastructure and availability of sectoral experts to mentor start-up businesses and enhance the ecosystem by strengthening the linkages amongst incubation centres, universities and corporates. This article discusses in detail the Scheme for Scale-up Support to Established Incubation Centre.
The objective of the scheme for scale-up support to establishing incubation centres is to completely transform the start-up ecosystem in the country by upgrading the established incubation centres to world-class standards.
All Established Incubation Centres that are registered in India as a legal entity in public, private or public-private partnership model and has been in operation for a minimum of three years as on August 2017 are eligible to apply for the grant.
Grant-in-aid support of Rs. 10 Crore would be provided in two or more annual instalments to Established Incubation Centres in India that are handpicked through this scheme. This fund is divided to cover the capital and operational expenditure between AIM and the Established Incubation Centre. These centres have to maintain a separate interest that bears bank accounts for funds that have to be disbursed by AIM. The interest earned on the grant money is reported to the AIM, NITI Aayog and the same would be treated as a credit to the Established Incubation Centre to be adjusted for instalments of the grants. The amount that is sanctioned during the first tranche will depend on the proposed and agreed expenditure between AIM and Established Incubation Center. It registers itself with the Controller General of Accounts (CGA), as it has the rights to access the books of accounts for the grant that is received from the Government. EIC has to submit Utilisation Certificate (UC) of the grant, towards the end of every financial year and while seeking further instalments of the grant. The unspent balance amount that is sanctioned by AIM would be refunded to the Government of India through Account’s Payee Demand Draft that is drawn in favour of Drawing and Disbursing Officer, NITI Aayog, at New Delhi.
The grant-in-aid would be provided for two years, and the scheme is operated for six years.
Established Incubation Centres are shortlisted based on the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). All shortlisted Established Incubation Centres are mandated to make a presentation on their scale-up plan before the screening of the final selection.
Given below are the documents that have to be uploaded along with the application form.
- Application form and key performance indicators
- Proposed Budget Plan
- Detailed Business Plan
- Registration Certificate of the applicant
- Memorandum of Association of the applicant
- Audited accounts statement for the last three years
- Annual reports for the previous three years
- Name of the industries that are associated and proposed to be associated with Established Incubation Center
- MOU/Partner Contract with Research and Institution and Industries
- Experience/credentials of the full-time managing team
- List of key mentors with their CVs
- Bond on a non-judicial stamp paper
Purpose and Usage of the Grant-in-Aid
The financial assistance that is provided shall be used by the EICs to expand the incubation capacity for technology-based innovative startups and provide world-class infrastructure to promote innovation and entrepreneurship across the nation. The grant-in-aid enables EIC to restore existing incubation space, enhance capabilities and capacity, including team, infrastructure, tools and equipment, seed funding support, services, outreach initiatives, training programs or other incubation related events and building the entrepreneurship ecosystem for incubatee startups. Land building construction costs are not permitted through the grant-in-aid. EICs have to ensure a balanced usage of funds. Any grant-in-aid that remains from the break-up of the activity heads must be used for the core incubation activities like business planning support, technology support, IPR legal, accounting, training, marketing, finance etc. and marketing and outreach programs that covers lectures, networking events, training, startup exchange programs. Here is the break-up of the financial support that is provided by NITI Aayog.
|Activity||Utilisation of Grant|
|Up to a maximum of 35%|
|Personnel Expenses||Up to a maximum of 20%|
|Seed Support Funding||Up to a maximum of 25%|
The Established Incubation Centres that are supported under this scheme can reapply for further scaling up in the subsequent years depending on the demonstration of proven outcomes and efficient utilisation of the previous grant-in-aid received. An Established Incubation Centre is eligible to apply and avail the grant-in-aid that is under the scheme for a maximum of three times.
Step 1: Established Incubation Centres that are eligible to avail scale-up support under this scheme can visit the official website and submit their application online to Atal Innovation Mission, NITI Aayog.
Step 2: The proposals would then be evaluated based on the merit by a Screening Committee that has been constituted for this purpose.
Step 3: The performance review of selected Established Incubation Centres has to be undertaken by a professional third party agency.
Step 4: All selected applicant is required to enter a Memorandum of Understanding and sign a Bond with NITI Aayog.
The initiative aims at scaling up the infrastructure of Established Incubation Centres to become a renowned innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem in the country by abiding with the objectives of AIM. In addition to upgrading the physical infrastructure and providing business support services to start-up businesses, Established Incubation Centres ensures the augmenting domain and management expertise of the core team/supporting staff for its operations within six months from the date of release of funds.
- The operations and performance of selected Established Incubation Centres would be reviewed every year by a professional third party agency. The release of grant each year would be based on satisfactory scaling up and performance.
- The concerned officers of AIM, NITI Aayog or its authorised representatives may visit the Incubation Center at regular intervals for ascertaining the progress of work and resolving difficulties that may be encountered at the time of implementation.
- AIM, NITI Aayog holds the right to terminate support to the project at any stage, if it is convinced that the grant is not appropriately utilized or that appropriate progress in the project work is not being made.