INCUBATION

The incubation program at Catalyst features two phases. Phase I is a three month structured engagement program during which startups prove their idea’s worth. During this is a period startups set goals for themselves and achieve them in a focussed and time bound manner. Startups that complete Phase I with desirable outcomes are then moved to Phase II of the incubation program involving a commitment of one year or more from Catalyst. More details are as follows.

 

We also call it ‘Idea Exploration’ phase. The objective is to help the participants refine their business idea, create a prototype, and test for market potential. The duration of the program may be 3-5 months where the participants work with mentors and utilize physical/financial support with an aim of making it to the next phase.

Objective program:

The objective of this phase is to help a startup to achieve concept validation and to prove market potential. This is a three month residential program based out of IIT Mandi campus.

Eligibility and Selection Process:

The program is open to Indian nationals who have a technology based innovative startup idea. Selection involves a multi-stage process including online application, screening, tele-pitch, in-person pitch to a selection panel and final discussion.


Duration:

We start with three months with flexibility for extension based on the nature of product/service.

Program Structure

During the three months of residential time on campus, startups undergo a structured training program. Every month a bunch of hands-on workshops are held to help startups get in place the basics of building a business. These workshops are conducted by industry mentors and experts with years of experience in dealing with startups and related issues. These workshops cover aspects ranging from business strategy to legal & financial issues. One-on-one mentoring time with mentors is facilitated for the startups. During this time, startups get to access the intellectual prowess of young and dynamic faculty of IIT Mandi for technical mentoring on product building. Many startups use this time to build a prototype, test and refine the prototype with the guidance of faculty.

The startups are expected to stay in the campus and travel for work when required. Work space and access to laboratories is provided to the startups. The startups set goals for themselves that they intend to achieve in the three months. A check up meeting is held every month to assess the progress and identify areas where support is required.


This program helps us:

  • validate the idea that a startup is working on.
  • establish a strong connect with the founding team

Financial Support

Financial support of upto ₹1,50,000 is made available to startups based on the goals of the team and a utilization plan. The amount available may change from time to time based on availability of funds or other factors. The funds can be utilized for product development purposes.

Expected Outcome

We bring clarity to the minds of founders about the ideas that they are working on, help them validate their assumptions about the market, and bring them to a point of where they reach any of the following conclusions:

  • I can do it!
  • I can’t do it.
  • It can’t be done.
  • It can be done, but I can’t do it.
  • It can be done, but not this way.
  • It can be done, but it is not worth doing.

Good ideas that need more work are given an extension, while ideas or teams that don’t show promise are parted with. Startups that show market traction are moved to the next phase of the incubation program.

Startups that show some evidence of market traction are provided support in Phase II of the incubation program. We spend more time with startups in this phase and help them in market linkage. The startups are expected to build an MVP and find paying customers using the learnings from their work in Phase I.

Eligibility:
  • Completion of Phase I
  • Evidence of market traction
  • Exhibition of high level commitment, sincerity and focus.
  • Alignment with vision of Catalyst
Selection Process:

Startups meeting the eligibility criteria apply through an application form. Shortlisted startups are invited to pitch to a selection committee.

Program Structure

Startups in this phase are expected to commercialize. There is no structured engagement plan for startups in this phase although they get access to ongoing workshops for Phase I startups. We do a written commitment of providing support for one year to begin with which can be extended by another 6-12 months on a case to case basis.

Seed Funding

Startups in this phase are extended seed funding upto INR 50 Lakhs against a stake in the company. Catalyst takes less than 10% equity for any amount of seed fund. All startups undergo a due diligence process and sign a shareholder agreement with Catalyst. The funds are disbursed in tranches based on milestones.

Expected Outcome

We bet on the success of the startups in Phase II. We put ourselves behind these teams to ensure that they see success as soon as practical. Typical growth path for startups is to move out of the campus gradually and survive in the real world. One yardstick of success is the external funding that the startup is able to attract the seed funding.

IIT Mandi Catalyst EIR Program 

EIR Programme is an entrepreneurship fellowship/grant in the form of a stipend to an aspiring entrepreneur with a potential for pursuing a promising technology business idea. The support to early-stage, product-focused young entrepreneurs working on innovative big ideas would be for a maximum period of 12 months.

Objectives of EIR Scheme

● To encourage aspiring entrepreneurs in taking initial steps towards entrepreneurship by
providing support as a fellowship. 

● To provide a platform to individuals with an entrepreneurial/innovative mindset looking
for an idea, attempting to validate their own idea, or find cofounders.

Target Audience 

● Individuals with a strong desire to become an entrepreneur. 

● Individuals with an idea that needs to be validated before committing large resources.

 ● Individuals looking for an idea that can be commercialized. 

● Individuals who are a single founder exploring a business idea and looking for potential
partners 

● Individuals looking to get groomed for an entrepreneurial journey

 ● Individuals that have tried entrepreneurship before unsuccessfully, and want to use the
learning into another attempt

 Guidelines 

● The EIR applicant should be a citizen of India. An Indian citizen is defined as one who is
in possession of a government-approved proof of nationality such as a valid passport,
voter’s id, etc. 

● EIR is a full-time position. The support recipient should not treat this support as a
stopgap arrangement to support them in their academic pursuits or transition between
jobs. 

● EIR support recipients are expected to pursue their entrepreneurial aspirations full time.
EIR cannot be concurrent with any other remuneration or fellowship. 

● Once the candidate raises funding or investments for their business ideas, the grant
support shall be discontinued from the date of receipt of the first tranche of funds. 

● The applicant shall spend 80% of the time on exploring his/her business idea and 20%
of the time to support Catalyst initiatives 

● The maximum duration of the program is one year. Progress evaluation will be done
periodically to decide on continuation of support. 

Benefits

 ● Access to IIT Mandi’s innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem

 ● Access to business/technical ideas that can be taken forward 

● A monthly stipend support of INR 10k-30k for a maximum period of 12 months 

● Guidance on product development, commercialization, business concepts and market
strategy. 

● Access to IIT Mandi faculty, students, and research infrastructure 

● Co-working space and hostel facility, based on availability

Expected Outcome

● It is expected that EIR candidates will explore a technology based business idea and
find clarity, potential team members and move into the Incubation program of Catalyst
for more support. 

Funding 

● Funding for this program can be through various support programs of sponsoring
agencies for example DST, TIH, Meity, HP Govt, etc. 

Application and Selection Process 

● Applications to be open throughout the year, screened periodically. 

 ● EIR Management Committee will include the following: 

          ○ Any two of the following 

                           ■ Faculty Incharge(s) 

                           ■ Senior Advisor

                           ■ Manager, Incubator or higher 

           ○ At least one 

                           ■ Technical Expert 

                           ■ Domain Expert 

● Selection Process

            ○ Application by the candidate through online portal or any other means advertised by the incubator 

            ○ Screening by the EIR Management committee 

            ○ Interview(s)/Pitch(s) by the shortlisted candidates to the the EIR Management committee 

            ○ Selection decision by the committee

Click here to Apply

We also call it ‘Idea Exploration’ phase. The objective is to help the participants refine their business idea, create a prototype, and test for market potential. The duration of the program may be 3-5 months where the participants work with mentors and utilize physical/financial support with an aim of making it to the next phase.

Objective The objective of this phase is to help a startup to achieve concept validation and to prove market potential. This is a three month residential program based out of IIT Mandi campus.

Eligibility and Selection Process:

The program is open to Indian nationals who have a technology based innovative startup idea. Selection involves a multi-stage process including online application, screening, tele-pitch, in-person pitch to a selection panel and final discussion.

Duration:

We start with three months with flexibility for extension based on the nature of product/service.

Program Structure

During the three months of residential time on campus, startups undergo a structured training program. Every month a bunch of hands-on workshops are held to help startups get in place the basics of building a business. These workshops are conducted by industry mentors and experts with years of experience in dealing with startups and related issues. These workshops cover aspects ranging from business strategy to legal & financial issues. One-on-one mentoring time with mentors is facilitated for the startups. During this time, startups get to access the intellectual prowess of young and dynamic faculty of IIT Mandi for technical mentoring on product building. Many startups use this time to build a prototype, test and refine the prototype with the guidance of faculty.

The startups are expected to stay in the campus and travel for work when required. Work space and access to laboratories is provided to the startups. The startups set goals for themselves that they intend to achieve in the three months. A check up meeting is held every month to assess the progress and identify areas where support is required.

This program helps us:
  • validate the idea that a startup is working on.
  • establish a strong connect with the founding team
Financial Support

Financial support of upto ₹1,50,000 is made available to startups based on the goals of the team and a utilization plan. The amount available may change from time to time based on availability of funds or other factors. The funds can be utilized for product development purposes.

Expected Outcome

We bring clarity to the minds of founders about the ideas that they are working on, help them validate their assumptions about the market, and bring them to a point of where they reach any of the following conclusions:
  • I can do it!
  • I can’t do it.
  • It can’t be done.
  • It can be done, but I can’t do it.
  • It can be done, but not this way.
  • It can be done, but it is not worth doing.
  Good ideas that need more work are given an extension, while ideas or teams that don’t show promise are parted with. Startups that show market traction are moved to the next phase of the incubation program.
Startups that show some evidence of market traction are provided support in Phase II of the incubation program. We spend more time with startups in this phase and help them in market linkage. The startups are expected to build an MVP and find paying customers using the learnings from their work in Phase I.

Eligibility:
  • Completion of Phase I
  • Evidence of market traction
  • Exhibition of high level commitment, sincerity and focus.
  • Alignment with vision of Catalyst
Selection Process:

Startups meeting the eligibility criteria apply through an application form. Shortlisted startups are invited to pitch to a selection committee.

Program Structure

Startups in this phase are expected to commercialize. There is no structured engagement plan for startups in this phase although they get access to ongoing workshops for Phase I startups. We do a written commitment of providing support for one year to begin with which can be extended by another 6-12 months on a case to case basis.

Seed Funding

Startups in this phase are extended seed funding upto INR 50 Lakhs against a stake in the company. Catalyst takes less than 10% equity for any amount of seed fund. All startups undergo a due diligence process and sign a shareholder agreement with Catalyst. The funds are disbursed in tranches based on milestones.

Expected Outcome

We bet on the success of the startups in Phase II. We put ourselves behind these teams to ensure that they see success as soon as practical. Typical growth path for startups is to move out of the campus gradually and survive in the real world. One yardstick of success is the external funding that the startup is able to attract the seed funding.

EIR Programme is an entrepreneurship fellowship/grant in the form of a stipend to an aspiring entrepreneur with a potential for pursuing a promising technology business idea. The support to early-stage, product-focused young entrepreneurs working on innovative big ideas would be for
a maximum period of 12 months.

Objectives of EIR Scheme

● To encourage aspiring entrepreneurs in taking initial steps towards entrepreneurship by providing support as a fellowship. 

● To provide a platform to individuals with an entrepreneurial/innovative mindset looking for an idea, attempting to validate their own idea, or find cofounders.

Target Audience 
● Individuals with a strong desire to become an entrepreneur. 
● Individuals with an idea that needs to be validated before committing large resources. 
● Individuals looking for an idea that can be commercialized. 
● Individuals who are a single founder exploring a business idea and looking for potential partners 
● Individuals looking to get groomed for an entrepreneurial journey 
● Individuals that have tried entrepreneurship before unsuccessfully, and want to use the learning into another attempt 
Guidelines 
● The EIR applicant should be a citizen of India. An Indian citizen is defined as one who is in possession of a government-approved proof of nationality such as a valid passport, voter’s id, etc. 
● EIR is a full-time position. The support recipient should not treat this support as a stopgap arrangement to support them in their academic pursuits or transition between jobs.
 ● EIR support recipients are expected to pursue their entrepreneurial aspirations full time. EIR cannot be concurrent with any other remuneration or fellowship. 
● Once the candidate raises funding or investments for their business ideas, the grant support shall be discontinued from the date of receipt of the first tranche of funds. 
● The applicant shall spend 80% of the time on exploring his/her business idea and 20% of the time to support Catalyst initiatives 
● The maximum duration of the program is one year. Progress evaluation will be done periodically to decide on continuation of support. 
Benefits
 ● Access to IIT Mandi’s innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem
 ● Access to business/technical ideas that can be taken forward 
● A monthly stipend support of INR 10k-30k for a maximum period of 12 months 
● Guidance on product development, commercialization, business concepts and market strategy. 
● Access to IIT Mandi faculty, students, and research infrastructure 
● Co-working space and hostel facility, based on availability 
Expected Outcome 
● It is expected that EIR candidates will explore a technology based business idea and find clarity, potential team members and move into the Incubation program of Catalyst for more support.
 Funding 
● Funding for this program can be through various support programs of sponsoring agencies for example DST, TIH, Meity, HP Govt, etc. 
Application and Selection Process
 ● Applications to be open throughout the year, screened periodically. 
● EIR Management Committee will include the following: 
    ○ Any two of the following 
          ■ Faculty Incharge(s) 
          ■ Senior Advisor 
          ■ Manager, Incubator or higher 
    ○ At least one 
          ■ Technical Expert 
          ■ Domain Expert 
● Selection Process 
    ○ Application by the candidate through online portal or any other means advertised by the incubator 
     ○ Screening by the EIR Management committee 
     ○ Interview(s)/Pitch(s) by the shortlisted candidates to the the EIR Management committee 
     ○ Selection decision by the committee

Click here to Apply