Mumbai based Chatur Ideas, one of the leading enablers of start-ups, has announced Aquakraft’s Swachhagraha business plan as among the top three business plans of the “Be a Chatur” Contest.
The #BeAChatur Contest was launched on 1 June 2017 with an aim to foster competition among business ideas for start ups in line with Prime Minster Narendra Modi’s vision of “Start Up India” and “Stand Up India”. The #BeAChatur Contest, a four-month intensive B-plan competition, was open for everyone with an idea and/or start-up, which saw participation from over 5400 entrepreneurs, and start-ups. In the first phase, the top 50 among all the applicants were chosen and given an opportunity for mentor-mentee interaction on 19 August 2017. The top ten were declared on 7 September 2017. Chatur Ideas has an investor network of over 1,500 investors and has till date advised over 650 startups in various facets of mentoring, fund-raising, legal services, technological assistance, go-to market strategy and digital marketing.
The main objective of this contest was to aggregate best ideas, which can then be led to innovation, IP, commercialisation and value creation in a structured and scientific manner. This was the first one and calendar of such contests addressing opportunities and challenges being planned, creating a focused and effective set of entrepreneurs and enterprises.
Devesh Chawla, Founder and CEO of Chatur Ideas, speaking on the success of the contest, said: “We are pleased to announce that ideas by Sunil Vasyani from Surat, Ashutosh Srivastava from Delhi and Swachhagraha business plan by “SwachhShree” Subramanya Kusnur, Chairman & CEO Aquakraft Projects Pvt Ltd Mumbai have made it to the Top 3 of ‘Be a Chatur’ Contest. The contest was aimed to provide a platform to startups to get mentored by the eminent names from the industry and a chance to raise capital for themselves. The response received was overwhelming and much more than we anticipated, which goes to show how much India needs platforms like Chatur Ideas to get a chance to showcase their potential. After this thumping success, we are now poised to address opportunities and challenges facing India to create sustained entrepreneurship opportuntities and job creation.”
“It was a great experience to see the amount of talent across spectrums that is available in young minds and how they are all raring to go with their conviction and passion. This contest was notably significant as the jury got to see an unconventional model of a startup addressing a very complex issue like drinking water and sanitation by Swachhagraha specifically focused on the rural area.”
Jury Member Krishna Kumar, founder of mpower, said: “This has beaten the conventional urban home filtration and sanitaryware business opportunity hands down as an attractive investment option and proven much more attractive, while making money and delivering ROI; it also creates a strong social capital and empowers the youth by creating livelihood opportunities by powering them vocationally.”
Another jury member, Varun Sheth, founder of Ketto: “The Swachhagraha business plan of Aquakraft was specifically chosen by the jury as it has proven to be a next generation social initiative which makes profit and delivers investor value by addressing the critical issue of clean drinking water and sanitation, especially in rural areas. This is a unique business plan which was never planned, but evolved with a clear focus and stabilised addressing every challenge that came along which has made it very bankable and robust fundamentally.”
Devesh Chawla said: “Subramanya has demonstrated a true sense of entrepreneurship leaving the cushy comforts of a corporate career and travelling over 400 villages, relentlessly advocating green technologies for water filtration and sanitation which are environment friendly and not budging to the temptation of using popularly corrosive technologies to make a fast buck. While doing so, he has faced many a challenge, encountered rigid decision makers and incompatible investors, but still stuck to his objective with a razor sharp focus which has evolved to the innovation of unique socio economic models, aquatm—Water ATM & aquato—bio toilet which are an integral part of Swachhagraha. This to us is a true sense of entrepreneurship, which we are making as a case study for emulation by our ecosystem.”
The other jury members of the “Be A Chatur” contest were Anurag Batra, Editor, Business World, Alpana Parida, MD DY Works , Jitendra Gupta, Founder PayU Money and Sanjay Kumath , Senior Vice President,www.housing.com.