• Villgro as an implementation partner will reinforce India’s waste management ecosystem.
  • The last date for application to the MoHUA-AFD Swachhata Startup Challenge is 31st March 2022.
  • Top 10 selected enterprises will receive funding worth 25, 00,000 from MoHUA-AFD and personalized professional support for a year.
  • Additional incentives include up to ₹ 50 Lakhs follow-on investment from Villgro and up to 100,000 USD worth of credits & support from Amazon Web Services - technology partner.

New Delhi, 25 March, 2022: The Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs (MoHUA), Government of India in partnership with the Department of Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) and French Development Agency (AFD) is inviting applications under the Swachhata Startup Challenge. The challenge aims to support innovative startups with scalable business models — catalyzing transformation and enabling social impact in the sanitation and waste management sector. In line with Hon’ble Prime Minister’s vision for ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ and ‘Make in India’, the Challenge seeks to promote an enabling environment for social enterprises in waste management under Swachh Bharat Mission-Urban 2.0 (SBM-U 2.0). 

The Challenge is open to startups registered in India and French actors collaborating with an Indian start-up (as a joint venture). The primary objective of the Swachhata Startup Challenge is to support startups creating innovative solutions across four thematic areas viz. (i) Social Inclusion, (ii) Zero Dump (iii) Plastic Waste and iv) Transparency. A financial award of ₹25, 00,000 will be extended to the top 10 startups from MoHUA-AFD alongside 1-year of personalized professional support. Furthermore, eligible startups stand a chance to gain access to will get additional incentives which include up to ₹ 50 Lakhs follow-on investment from Villgro, the implementation partner of the Challenge, and up to 100,000 USD worth of credits and support from technology partner Amazon Web Services (AWS), to each winner.

Villgro is calling online applications from startups through a dedicated micro-site (www.swachhatastartupchallenge.com) that details the key modalities of the Challenge. Applicants may also reach out to info@villgro.org for any queries and feedback.

Interested startups are required to submit their online application before March 31, 2022. This will be followed by a pre-selection phase from April 1, 2022 to April 30, 2022 and the selection phase will span between May 1, 2022, and May 30, 2022, in which shortlisted participants will need to submit an electronic selection form, followed by a virtual pitch event which will then be succeeded by the selection of the final 10 laureates. 

About Villgro:

Villgro is India's foremost and one of the world's largest social enterprise incubators. Established in 2001, Villgro creates impactful, innovative and successful enterprises in Health, Agribusiness, and Climate Action. Since 2001, Villgro has supported 323 social enterprises that have raised over INR 4,388 million in investments, to create 4922 jobs and impact over 20 million lives.  Villgro was awarded the Top Incubator Award by the Department of Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (GoI) in 2020. Apart from India, Villgro also has a presence in the USA, Africa, and the Philippines.

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