The Economic Times Startup Awards 2015 finally announced the winners in different categories of this event. This award ceremony was open for startups from different spheres to apply for a nomination since June 2015.
The Economic Times Startup Awards have been designed to celebrate the finest and bravest of those entrepreneurs who decided to put everything at stake to launch a new enterprise. The ET startups awards is an attempt to recognize the sweat and tears of risk takers that went into shaping what will drive the nation’s economic engines tomorrow. In short, through these awards, ET strives to salute the entrepreneurs and also seek to inspire the dreamers and daredevils in all of us.
The Economic Times is proud to launch the startup awards to further its commitment to pushing the country’s agenda on entrepreneurship and young leadership. They are partnered by Reliance Jio as the Principal Partners of these awards. Jio is a movement that will transform the lives of millions of Indians by empowering them to leverage the power of a new age digital India.
Zinnov Consulting, a team of passionate consultants, mentors and investors, has provided the first-level support for evaluating startups before the final shortlist is shared with an esteemed jury comprising some of the biggest names in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Bootstrap consultancy, iSpirt, has provided its intellectual capital in evaluating this one category of awards.
Applications were open to both – startups and investors for 8 categories of awards (Out of the 8, 7 were for startups and 1 was for investors).
- Startup of the year: The firm that has displayed the furthermost growth over the previous year and has the potential to become a blue-chip corporation. The quality of the founding and management team was an important component in decision-making.
- Best on campus: This award was to recognize a startup founded by a student/students while studying. Of course, the startup should now be building a commercial enterprise and therefore, there must be some level of validation of its business model by investors and/or customers. College projects didn’t qualify in this category.
- Top innovator: This award was to recognize innovations that have the potential to launch a business or give it a big boost. It should be an original idea that is core to the business or an idea that provides the differentiation to set it apart from competition.
- Bootstrap champ: The startup that has shown great growth without external funding of any sort (excluding family and friends) and has the potential to scale up into a large enterprise.
- Women ahead: A startup launched and led by a woman/women that demonstrates superior performance in its competitive space. The female founder/co-founder should be involved in the operations of the company.
- Comeback kid: This is the award that recognizes that failure is the essential first step to success. It seeks to dilute the stigma associated with failure in our country. It will be bestowed upon that extraordinary entrepreneur who grew stronger from his or her failure and bounced back with a successful subsequent business.
- Midas touch (best investor): This one’s reserved for those who seek the finest diamond in the deepest pits, and then take the pains to clean and polish it for brilliance. It would reward an investor who displayed the best investment acumen over the last year, defined as an exit, early investment of a notable startup, realization of an earlier investment. The winner will be adjudged on amount invested, portfolio diversity and additional support.
- Social enterprise: This award seeks to recognize the best startup that offers a product or service as a solution to society’s most pressing problems.
To judge such prestigious awards, it is important to have the right jury in order to validate the results in the deserved manner. The jury for this event had 7 different successful entrepreneurs from different segments. The jury consisted of –
- VG Siddhartha – Founder, Café Coffee Day
- Sharad Sharma – Co-founder, iSpirt
- Rishad Premji – Head of Strategy, Wipro
- Rohan Murty – cofounder, Catamaran Ventures
- Meena Ganesh – Cofounder, GrowthStory
- Kunal Bahl – cofounder & CEO, Snapdeal
- Nikesh Arora – President, SoftBank
“When we announced the launch of The Jio Economic Times Startup Awards on June 12, we expected a few hundred entries at the most. We were delighted to receive over 3,700 entries in eight categories, most of them within the first week itself. “Says one of the members of the event organizers.
- Startup of the year
Ola Cabs – Founded by Bhavish Aggarwal and Ankit Bhatia in 2011
Six years ago, Bhavish Aggarwal passed out of IIT-Bombay with a degree in computers science. Today he has Japan’s richest man Masayoshi Son and Yuri Milner as investors and Ratan Tata as an advisor for his own company called the Ola Cabs. A journey, which began in 2011 in Mumbai with fellow IIT Bombay alumni Ankit Bhati, is now one of India’s most valuable startups pegged at $4.5 billion.
- Best On Campus
Purple Squirrel Eduventures – Founded by Aditya Gandhi and Sahiba Dhandhania in 2013
Purple Squirrel Eduventures is headquartered at Mumbai. It is a holistic learning platform that envisions making practical and industry-driven education accessible to all students.
- Top Innovator
Grey Orange – Founded by Samay Kohli and Akash Guptain 2011
Grey Orange is headquartered at Gurgaon. It indulges into research, design, manufacture, installations and supporting of machines/robots which automate certain processes in a warehouse.
- Bootstrap Champ
BrowserStack – Founded by Ritesh Arora and Nakul Aggarwal in 2011
BrowserStack provides a robust cloud infrastructure of real mobile and desktop browsers for browser testing
- Women Ahead
Mapmygenome – Founded by Anu Acharya in 2011
Founded in 2011, Mapmygenome is headquartered at Hyderabad. It is a molecular diagnostics company that offers predictive and diagnostic healthcare testing using genomics.
- Comeback Kid
Faaso’s – Founded by Jaydeep Barmanin 2003
The venture was initially founded in 2003 in Pune as a wraps business. The entrepreneur closed down the business to pursue higher education and corporate opportunities before relaunching Faasos in 2010.
- Social Enterprise
Forus Health – Founded by K Chandrasekhar and Shyam Vasudev in 2010
Founded in 2010, Forus Health is headquartered at Bangalore.
Forus manufactures affordable eye care equipment’s under the brand name 3nethra
- Midas Touch
Kalaari Capital – Founded by Vani Kola
When it comes to e-retailing, Kola perhaps boasts the most enviable track record of spotting entrepreneurs capable of building large companies in their categories. Her bets have been more on entrepreneurs and their understanding of the markets than just their business models.
The entire event was organized by The Economic Times, who partnered with Reliance Jio as presenting sponsors and Zinnov and iSpirt as knowledge partners. A hearty congratulations to the entire team for the huge success of the events and congratulations to the award bearers as well.