Ten women entrepreneurs have been selected as the first cohort of the POWERED Accelerator. It is a joint initiative launched in partnership with Shell Foundation, DFID India (Government of UK), Department of Science & Technology (Government of India), along with Zone Startups India.
POWERED Accelerator is the first-of-its-kind programme, supporting women entrepreneurs in the energy sector. It is focused on twin Sustainable Development Goals of Energy and Diversity. The major focus areas of the accelerator are access to energy, sustainable mobility, and waste to value.
The accelerator will be enabling women to expand their innovative and consumer responsive services, products and financing, with the goal to increase economic empowerment of women-led ventures in the energy sector. After its launch in Mumbai, the accelerator was launched in six cities across the country.
More than 130 women entrepreneurs had applied for the programme from varied backgrounds, all having created innovative solutions in the energy sector. All these startups were evaluated based on certain parameters like applicants background, innovativeness, the scale of impact, problem solution fit, clarity of thought, and programme fit.
The final 10 selected entrepreneurs will get support for one year to scale their business, it includes a six-week long residential mentoring programme and access to equity free seed fund of ₹6.86 lakh ($10,000) each.
“Through the POWERED programme, we will work towards strengthening the ecosystem for more women-owned and managed businesses across the energy value chain. We are confident that these 10 women entrepreneurs will enable greater inclusion and sustainability towards a more energy secure and equitable future for all,” said Gavin McGillivray, Head, DFID India.
Here is the list of all the 10 women entrepreneurs select in the first cohort:
- Simmi Sareen from Loans4SME: She heads Mumbai-based Loans4SME, a lending platform that connects businesses with debt providers.
- Srujana Raghupatruni from Cellerite Systems: SHe is the founder and CTO of Hyderabad-based Cellerite Systems, its develops innovative electric chargers focussed on reducing vehicle charging time.
- Pushpalata Pani from M/S Kumudini Enterprise: She is the co-founder of an Odisha-based M/S Kumudini Enterprise, an organisation, run by women, that aims to provide energy services in rural communities.
- Mousumi Medhi from HoneyComb Inventions: She is the Chief Executive Officer of HoneyComb Inventions, a startup aimed at enhancing the power backup of healthcare devices.
- Ashmi Parasrampuria from Upcycler’s Lab: She is the founder of Mumbai-based Upcycler’s Lab, that creates awareness of sustainability among kids using various tools.
- Kavita Agarwal from BluPrints: She is the founder of Delhi-based BluPrints, company specializing in retail-tech and fintech.
- Ruchi Jain from Taru Naturals: She is the founder and CEO of Mumbai-based Taru Naturals, a platform that connects farmers with clean and renewable energy solutions
- Manvi Dhawan from Agnij-Adjustable Thermoelectric Power Generator: She is the CEO of Mumbai-based Agnij- Adjustable Thermoelectric Power Generator, it develops a product called Agnij that is a thermo-electric belt used to harness waste heat.
- Neha Upadhyaya from Guna: She is the founder of Delhi-based Guna, which teaches organic farming and uses of solar energy to rural women farmers in Sikkim and Ladakh.
- Nidhi Pant from S4S Technologies: She is the co-founder of Mumbai-based S4S Technologies, which manufactures solar dehydrators used by farmers for food preservations.