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Mumbai University to Establish 75 Startup Clinics For Students

Mumbai University is launching 75 start-up clinics across seven districts to support aspiring entrepreneurs. What are startup clinics? How will these clinics support start-up ecosystem? Where are these clinics being set up? Read for all the details!

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Swati Dayal
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The University of Mumbai (MU) is set to launch an ambitious initiative to support aspiring entrepreneurs across seven districts. The university plans to establish 75 start-up clinics in its various departments and affiliated colleges, offering a comprehensive support system for budding ventures.

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The start-up clinics will provide mentorship, resources, and access to funding opportunities, aimed at enhancing diversity and inclusivity within the start-up ecosystem. The initiative will initially focus on colleges with large student populations, especially those in the arts, science, and commerce disciplines.

Sachin Laddha, Director of Innovation, Incubation & Linkages at MU, emphasized the inclusivity of the project, saying, “Our focus is to get ideas from budding entrepreneurs from rural, urban, tribal, and coastal regions and help them culminate into successful ventures.”

What is A Startup Clinic?

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A startup clinic is a dedicated support center or program designed to assist budding entrepreneurs and early-stage startups in developing their business ideas and ventures. These clinics typically provide a range of services including Mentorship, Guidance, Funding support, Networking etc.

Distribution of Clinics Across Districts

The university plans to evenly distribute the clinics across its jurisdiction: 20 in Mumbai city, 20 in the suburban districts, 15 in Thane, and five each in Palghar, Raigad, Sindhudurg, and Ratnagiri. These clinics will serve as nodal centers, ensuring that their benefits extend beyond their host institutions to neighboring colleges.

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Mumbai University has invited applications from affiliated colleges and institutes to set up these clinics. The MU IDEAS Foundation Incubation Centre, a Section 8 company, will develop the clinics. The foundation currently aids students with pre-incubation and incubation activities but has limited reach.

Laddha explained, "The activity of the start-up clinic will not be restricted to only the selected colleges, but to all other institutions in the vicinity. The clinics will also act as the university's nodal centres for all start-up-related activities in other affiliated colleges."

MU Vice-Chancellor Ravindra Kulkarni added, “The start-up clinic project aims to bridge this gap. The students from the clinics will also get access to the university’s MU IDEAS incubation centre in Kalina, which spreads over 40,000 square feet and is also one of the largest in any public university system in the state.”

Comprehensive Support for Start-Ups

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Each clinic will offer one-on-one mentorship sessions with experienced entrepreneurs and industry experts. These sessions will cover various aspects of start-ups, including business strategy, product development, marketing, and fundraising. Regular workshops will address legal compliance, financial management, and pitching ideas to investors.

These clinics will connect students with potential investors, venture capitalists, angel investors, or any funding agencies to raise funds for their business ventures. They will also facilitate networking events, meet-ups, and networking sessions.

Broader Vision and Collaborative Governance

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Dr. Laddha outlined the broader vision, stating, “The Startup Clinic is a programme offered by MU IDEAS for Entrepreneurs to support and empower student entrepreneurs. The programme provides resources and support, such as mentorship, networking opportunities, and access to expertise, knowledge, resources, and technology available at the MU IDEAS, to help student-led startups grow and succeed.”

While there is no immediate plan for direct funding, the university aims to collaborate with funding agencies for seed funding as the project matures.

Each clinic will be governed by a dedicated council, including the college principal as chairperson, a faculty in-charge, three entrepreneurs, two faculty members passionate about entrepreneurship, three students, and a representative from MU’s Innovation, Incubation, and Linkages directorate.

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Building a Supportive Community

Selected colleges will work closely with the MU IDEAS Foundation to ensure the success of the initiative. This joint venture aims to provide direct access to the incubation center at Kalina, fostering a more diverse and vibrant start-up ecosystem.

Through this initiative, MU aims to build a supportive community for student entrepreneurs, nurturing their ideas and helping them transform into successful businesses. By extending the reach of its incubation resources and fostering an inclusive environment, the university is poised to significantly impact the entrepreneurial landscape in the region.

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