Startups do more than generate wealth, they create the innovations that the country needs to meet its development goals. When startups grow, so does the country's innovation pool. India aims to have 250 unicorns in the next three years and CII is working with the government in multiple ways to further this agenda. The CII ICONN Alpha is a step in this direction. It is a resource forum for the startup ecosystem, that provides access to a curated pool of resources such as market intelligence and opportunities, industry-startup connect programmes, international market opportunities, capacity-building interventions, and networking platforms.
CII Startup Mentor Club network is established as a pan-India initiative to support entrepreneurs and their company's growth through targeted interventions by assessing their needs and matching them with Industry members who are seasoned entrepreneurs, executives, and functional experts across different Sectors. There is growing evidence that leadership and mentorship are playing a crucial role in the growth of Startups. In fact, CII's surveys show that more than nine out of ten small business owners credit mentors for shaping their journey while more than half of the polled venture capitalists blame inexperienced leadership for startup failures. To plug this gap and to ensure that innovative ideas are optimized, CII launched the corporate mentor club where startup needs would be assessed and matched with a pool of CII members comprising seasoned entrepreneurs, executives, and functional experts across sectors. The mentorship would be symbiotic, with learnings for startups as well as industry members. Corporate leaders who are willing to mentor startups are invited to register as mentors.