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Tech hub abuzz with idea battle

Do you dream of starting your web portal? Have you thought of starting an NGO? Do you have an innovative product you want to launch? Turning your dreams into reality might just be within your grasp, thanks to Empresario 2013.

The annual business plan contest organised by the entrepreneurship cell of IIT Kharagpur is back, bigger and better, in association with Mahindra Rise and supported by The Telegraph.

The contest has opened for entries, and all one needs to participate is an idea. The last date for entries is October 30. The finals will be held in January during the cell’s Global Entrepreneurship Summit.

“We are looking forward to a larger participation this year. Last year, we had 1,400 entries. This year we are expecting around 2,000,” said Ram Prasadh, a student manager of the cell.

Empresario has three phases. In the first phase participants will have to download the form from http://www.ecell-iitkgp.org/ empresario.php, fill it in and register on the site with team details.

The applicants will be shortlisted in the second phase. In the third, the shortlisted applicants will make a presentation on their ideas — from the field of products, services or social entrepreneurship — before a panel of venture capitalists.

“The entrepreneurship cell of IIT Kharagpur is a student organisation that aims to foster the spirit of entrepreneurship among students in India. The two flagship events of the cell — business plan competition Empresario and the product design contest Envision are geared towards fulfilling the aim,” said Prasadh.

The cell has already incubated 25 start-ups in the six years since its formation.

The top three winners of Empresario 2011 were given Rs 2 lakh each. This year the prize money may go up to Rs 2.5 crore. The competitors will have access to a panel of mentors to help them.