Meghalaya Bags 'Best Performer' Award In National Startup Rankings

As many as 24 states and seven union territories took part in the exercise which consisted of seven reform areas and 26 action points.
Under CM Conrad Sangma, Meghalaya won the award
Under CM Conrad Sangma, Meghalaya won the award

Meghalaya was among three states that won the ‘Best Performer’ award in the National Startup Rankings-2021, alongside Gujarat and Karnataka.

The Union commerce and industry minister Piyush Goyal declared the results of the third edtion of the ranking system of states based on their support to start-up ecosystem in a ceremony held in Delhi.

As many as 24 states and seven union territories took part in the exercise which consisted of seven reform areas and 26 action points. The states were categorized into five groups, namely, best performers, top performers, leaders, aspiring leaders and emerging startup ecosystem.

An official of the planning department of Meghalaya while speaking on the recognition, said that the government had launched the ‘PRIME’ programme or Promotion and Incubation of Market Driven Enterprises in January 2020 in a bid to accelerate the creation of an ecosystem for the promotion of entrepreneurship in the state.

The program is a reflection of the vision of Chief Minister Conrad Sangma to provide a platform and opportunities to entrepreneurs and making entrepreneurship the preferred choice of livelihood in Meghalaya, the official said.

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A total of 100 aspiring entrepreneurs are selected under the programme via an annual open chief minister’s e-Championship Challenge.

Once onboard, they are provided with mentoring, incubation and infrastructural and logistical support through a network of PRIME hubs.

Several funding channels have been incorporated under the programme to help entrepreneurs access seed capital and credit or loans when required as accessing formal financial services remains a challenge in the state.

Grants of up to Rs 5 lakhs are provided to some entrepreneurs for research and development of product and similar activities under this initiative.

Moreover, interest-free loans amounting to Rs 25 lakhs are also given to them to help scale up their operations.

Over 210 entrepreneurs have secured funding for their business while around 1,300 entrepreneurs have enjoyed the benefits of various components under the programme like co-working spaces and training.

The official also highlighted that almost 60 per cent of the beneficiaries of the programme are women.

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