Innovative products invented in remote Indian villages - DISHA 13 at MDI, Gurgaon
Continuing with its tradition to be the host to some of the most exciting management events in the country, MDI Gurgaon added another feather in their cap by inaugurating the 3rd edition of DISHA - an annual Business Plan competition organised by Samaritans - the social responsibility club at MDI, Gurgaon in association with National Innovation Foundation - India (NIF - India) on 24th February 2013 on their campus grounds. The event was graced by the presence of Mr.
Mahesh Patel, National Innovation Coordinator, NIF – India, Mr. Sanid Patil, Chief Innovation Manager, Gujarat Grassroots Innovation Augmentation Network (GIAN – West) and Dr. S.K. Tapasvi, Associate Professor, MDI Gurgaon as the esteemed panel of judges.
The event received 21 entries from across the country that included some of the leading business schools like IIM Kozikode, NITIE Mumbai, NMIMS Mumbai, IMT Ghaziabad, XIMB Bhubaneswar, IMI Delhi, TAPMI Manipal and MDI Gurgaon. The registered teams were provided with 13 innovative product ideas by NIF, some of which were - Low Cost Mechanised Paddy Thresher, Turmeric Harvester, Coffee Making Cooker, Herbal Agro Products and Paddy Oilseed Turner, from which they had to prepare an abstract over any one of their selected three ideas. This abstract was then evaluated and 6 teams based on their submitted abstract were shortlisted for the final presentations of their business propositions at MDI, Gurgaon.
The secretary of Samaritans, Ms. Mansi Singhal proudly presented the event saying, “NIF has been associated with Samaritans for the event DISHA since 2010 and together we are working hard to bring these innovative products invented in remote Indian villages into the markets as commercial products. NIF’s objective is to promote innovative product ideas and hence commercialize them for the benefit of the society and also the innovator. NIF’s objective has been complemented by Samaritans by acting as a facilitator, contributing through providing NIF the management talent which gives these product ideas a business perspective and simultaneously extending a platform to management students to hone their entrepreneurial skills.” She also said that Samaritans is further looking to scale up this initiative by making it bigger in the coming years.
During the event, the panel of judges were totally engrossed in the presentations and grilled the teams through their insightful questions which widely focussed on the feasibility of these business plans along with the management of risks associated with them. In a special interaction, Mr. Sanid Patil congratulated MDI, Gurgaon for the success of the event and was elated over the quality of the effort put in by the teams. He said, “NIF through events like DISHA has been building bridges between the informal remote sectors and the formal management sector so that the knowledge and ideas from formal sector could be employed to innovations in the informal sector.” He assured that NIF would apply the ideas given by the participating teams to develop out tangible product strategies in their future endeavours.
The team from TAPMI, Manipal were declared the winners of the Business Plan competition, followed by the teams from MDI, Gurgaon and IMT, Ghaziabad. The teams, apart from the cash prizes, received appreciation and valuable pointers for improvement from the judges. The team from TAPMI in a post event interaction thanked the organizing team from MDI to have provided them such an opportunity which helped them to understand business more practically. They said, “We are happy to have stood first in the competition but we realized that although we kept feasibility as our priority, still our business plan has got a huge scope for improvement. We are considering this as an opportunity to start our own entrepreneurial venture in the future.” The other winning teams from MDI Gurgaon and IMT Ghaziabad also emphasized on the learning that the event provided them. They said, “DISHA has given us the opportunity to come in contact with NIF and successful innovators of our country. Besides learning to develop a feasible and successful business plan from the perspectives of all the involved stakeholders, it has made us learn extensively about innovations and the problems and issues related with their commercialization.”
A well spent Sunday afternoon; DISHA’13 successfully embarked another initiative taken up by MDI to impart value based education and be a school for thought leaders ensuring academic excellence and continuous innovation.
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