IIMA students pitch for electricity from crop residue, solar powered irrigation for Hult Prize
Team Gryffindor with Rittik Mondal, Raunak Bhiwal, Udit Ahuja, Gagan Oberoi – IIM Ahmedabad’s second year PGP students – was adjudged the campus winners.
Ahmedabad Creating rural entrepreneurship zones, producing electricity with crop residues, empowering farmers through solar powered irrigation. These were some winning the ideas pitched by students of the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad (IIMA) at the eighth edition of the social entrepreneurship competition, the Hult Prize recently.
Twenty-three teams from IIM Ahmedabad participated in the competition, of which Team Gryffindor with Rittik Mondal, Raunak Bhiwal, Udit Ahuja, Gagan Oberoi – second year PGP students – was adjudged the campus winners. Their idea was based on creating rural entrepreneurship zones (REZs) to produce electricity using crop residues.
The Hult Prize, a start-up accelerator organised in association with the United Nations, is this year focused on building scalable and sustainable social enterprises that harness the power of energy to transform the lives of 10 million people by 2025.
Hult Prize IIMA was organised by the institute’s Entrepreneurship Cell and Centre for Innovation Incubation and Entrepreneurship (CIIE).
Team Fast Pacers of Shital Khairnar, Nikhil Sonawane, and Anvesh Reddy – second year PGP students – were the runners-up at the event. Their plans revolved around empowering farmers through solar-powered irrigation and cold storage solutions.
Other ideas that impressed the judges were about micro-financing of solar-powered micro-grids to scale across villages in India and Nepal by Team Energizers of Shikha Gupta, Ozair Hamdani, Aayush Agrawal, and Shashank Patidar – first year PGP students. Other pitches included electric vehicles for disabled people, financiers for farmers to bridge the gap in capital expenditure subsidies, and forming solar pump cooperatives such as Dhundi Saur Urja Utpadak Mandali.
The campus winners advance to compete in one of 15 regional finals happening around the world next March in one of 15 locations – Toronto, San Francisco, Quito, Mexico, Nairobi, Melbourne, Kuala Lumpur, London, Shanghai, Boston, Lagos, Dubai, Cairo, Bogota and Singapore. One winning team from each host city will then move onto a summer business incubator, where participants will receive mentorship, advisory and strategic planning as they create prototypes and set up to launch their new social business. A final round of competition will be hosted in September 2018, in which the winning team to be awarded the $1,000,000 prize.
About the event, Akshita Agarwal, organiser of Hult Prize at IIMA, said “It’s not every day that we get an opportunity to change the world at this scale. The team Gryffindor will be representing all of us at the upcoming Hult Prize Regional Finals happening in March, 2018. This is our chance to show the world that IIM Ahmedabad is dedicated to Impact.”
Tapish Bhatt, VP, CIIE said the centre believed that entrepreneurship had an unmatched ability to bring about disruptive change in India and engaged with ventures across technology and impact areas like energy, environment, agriculture, healthcare and affordable technology. “We will continue to help our entrepreneurs turn their ideas into viable businesses,” he added.