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With the advent of new age startups who are focusing on core innovation, we thought it was befitting to have a sound panel discussion on “Indian Science & Engineering: A new age dawns” on the occasion of our annual flagship event – “Blume Day 2019”.  

The panel was moderated by Milind Shah who is a partner at Stratlead Advisors & an investor at Unitus Seed capital. In this panel, we had some distinguished guests, namely Noriaki Sakamoto, (Partner, University of Tokyo Edge Capital, Prof C S Murali (Chairman, STEM Cell at IISc), Dr. Charit Bhograj (Co-Founder, Tricog – An Insta ECG provider) & Saurav Kumar (Founder, Euler Motors – EVs as Light Commercial Vehicles).

We had an interesting discussion around intellectual property, University oriented Private capital Partnership models & more. We discovered the following key insights:

(1) Patents vs Publications: Where is India moving?

a.   Prof C S Murali highlighted that Indian Academia had been focusing on publishing their work, but with the recent advent of Entrepreneurship culture, academicians have started patenting their work as well

b.   Saurav Kumar added that another key driver for patent filing would be enforcement of stricter measures on IP infringement by our judicial system

(2) Is India ready to explore private capital models in partnership with Universities?

a.   Noriaki San from UTEC highlighted that their relationships with 5-7 universities across the globe has been the “secret sauce” of identifying the best hard-tech startups across globe

b.   Prof Murali added that IISc is exploring similar models and with time (probably 3-4 years down the line), India would see many such partnerships

(3) Recognition of Technology incubation as a CSR activity by Govt. of India has encouraged many corporates to set up R&D labs & centers which can be utilized by early stage startups.

P.S: When the panelists were asked where they would invest in this new age dawn of India, Dr Charit & Noriaki San went for Healthcare, whereas Saurav wants to bet on Sustainable energy and Prof. Murali wants to bet on Sustainable & clean water.

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