Tata launches 3rd edition of First Dot

Mumbai/Kolkata, Sept 27 : The Tata group on Friday launched the third edition of Tata First Dot powered by NEN, which is India's decisive platform for student entrepreneurship, supporting and accelerating high-potential entrepreneurship across the country.

This initiative seeks to carry forward the Tata group's commitment to innovation and entrepreneurship to India's next generation of leaders, the comapny said in a statement.

Adding five more cities this year - Raipur, Guwahati, Ranchi, Nagpur, and Srinagar, Tata First Dot workshops will be held across 20 cities in India.

Announcing the initiative, Atul Agrawal, Vice President, Corporate Affairs, Tata Services, said, "With this initiative, the Tata group endeavors to provide a platform to develop and nurture entrepreneurial spirit among the young promising business minds through a multi-phase programme with workshops, competitions, peer-networking, seminars and mentorship."

K Srikrishna, Executive Director of National Entrepreneurship Network (NEN), said, "Entrepreneurship amongst students is showing steady year-on-year growth, mirroring the growth of the Tata First Dot conference and showcase.

"Tata and NEN's partnership, now in its third year will bring its knowledge and skill building workshops to twenty cities. We will mentor, showcase and support an even greater number of startups through the January conference and beyond."

Regional workshops of the Tata First Dot 2013 for desirous students and student entrepreneurs will start from Sept 28 at Ahmedabad and then move on to Bhubaneswar, Raipur, Mumbai, Pune, Chandigarh, Indore, Chennai, Guwahati, Jaipur, Hyderabad, Kanpur, Kolkata, Ranchi, Nagpur, New Delhi, Srinagar, Trivandrum, Bangalore and Coimbatore.

The workshops will feature business-modelling, panel discussions and entrepreneur interactions.

Nominations for the second component of the program - the Tata First Dot National Competition for best Student Start-ups will open on Dec 1. Five winners will be selected by an eminent panel of business leaders, investors and entrepreneurs.

Contestants will also participate in the online voting-based student competition, the Tata First Dot People's Choice Competition. All validated start-ups will have information posted online, and everyone will be invited to vote for their favourite start-ups. The five contestants with the maximum validated votes will be declared People's Choice winners.

Winners of the competitions will be felicitated during the fourth phase of the programme - the 2 day Tata First Dot Conference to be held in Bangalore in early 2014. The conference will feature interactive sessions with entrepreneurs while also including opportunities to network and have discussions with business leaders, 1:1 mentoring sessions, an exhibition of the winning start-ups and simulation games.

Tata First Dot 2012 had attracted over 400 entries from across multiple sectors including education, manufacturing, IT/Software, hospitality/travel, retail, biotech etc. The entries were received from all over India including metros, major cities and also smaller cities.

--IBNS (Posted on 28-09-2013)

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