These startups promoting tech innovation through CSR

By: | Published: March 18, 2019 12:48 AM

Two promising startups are the beneficiaries of a unique industry-academia partnership between the tech business incubator at IIM-A and Portescap.

From the labs: Promoting tech innovation through CSRFrom the labs: Promoting tech innovation through CSR

Centre for Innovation Incubation and Entrepreneurship (CIIE), the technology business incubator at IIM Ahmedabad (IIM-A), helps entrepreneurs turn ideas into viable businesses. Recently, Portescap, a leading manufacturer of miniature motors for performance-critical applications, through its corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative joined forces with CIIE to catalyse innovative entrepreneurship. CIIE has utilised the contribution for catalytic support for two product-based innovative enterprises: Cell Propulsion and Distinct Horizon.

Cell Propulsion is an innovative venture ushering in advanced autonomous electric mobility technologies such as electric motors and motor drives, Li-ion battery packs, chargers, and operating software stack. It is currently catering to the heavy commercial vehicle (HCV) segment, and is looking to develop and commercialise standalone products as well as integrated systems and solutions such as powertrains and conversion kits for two-wheelers in the near future. It seeks to capture the nascent market for heavy electrical vehicles and has established supply chains for motors, Li-ion cells, in-house battery management services, motor drives and charger production.

Distinct Horizon, on the other hand, has developed what is said to be the world’s first successful Powered Urea Deep Placement Applicator for which it has also filed an international patent. This advanced agri-tech solution can bring about 30-40% reduction in urea consumption, culminate into 25% increase in rice production, and reduce 1 metric tonne of carbon dioxide emission per hectare of land. Distinct Horizon has already roped in partners such as IDFC, Tata Chemicals and VFRC.

For Portescap, these two ventures are in deep alignment with its CSR mission to promote sustainable market-driven solutions that generate significant and palpable impact on the economy, industry and the nation as a whole. J Salim Vali, senior vice-president – Catalytic Capital, CIIE, said, “We are grateful to Portescap for partnering with us. Generous contributions like this from corporates has helped CIIE catalyse innovative entrepreneurship, create sustainable impact and accelerate development.”

CIIE will now tap into its extensive network of mentors, industry and technical experts to support these two startups and catapult them to the next level.

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