India has a vibrant startup ecosystem – the third largest in the world. Calling startups ‘the backbone of new India’ and the ‘engine that will power the nation’s economic growth,’ Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently declared January 16 as 'National Startup Day', acknowledging the role startups have played in growing India’s GDP.

Amazon signs an MoU with NIF Incubation and Entrepreneurship Council.
Amazon signs an MoU with NIF Incubation and Entrepreneurship Council

Towards the goal of realizing India’s vision of a digital and Aatmanirbhar Bharat, Amazon India has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the NIF Incubation and Entrepreneurship Council (NIFientreC), the Technology Business Incubator of National Innovation Foundation (NIF), an autonomous body under the Government of India’s Department of Science and Technology.

“At Amazon, we remain committed to our pledge of digitizing 10 million MSMEs in India by 2025 and contribute to the vision of an Aatmanirbhar Bharat.”
Manish Tiwary
Vice President, Amazon India

“At Amazon, we remain committed to our pledge of digitizing 10 million MSMEs in India by 2025 and contribute to the vision of an Aatmanirbhar Bharat. Our partnership with NIFientreC is aimed at bringing the benefits of digitization and e-commerce to grassroot entrepreneurs, and entrepreneurs taking forward student innovations from rural areas to sell to millions of Amazon customers in India and across the globe,” said Manish Tiwary, Vice President, Amazon India.

Manish Tiwary – Amazon India’s vice president – writes about the journey to this key milestone.

Adding that it is “proud to announce this partnership with Amazon”, Dr. Gulshan Rai, Chairperson, NIFientreC said, “With the fast-paced digital transformation that’s happening in the country right now, there could not be a better time for grassroots entrepreneurs to consider taking their innovations directly to the consumers all over India. This is also an effort to display the country’s prowess in technology innovation and accelerate the growth of a Digital India.”

“We are proud to announce this partnership with Amazon...This is also an effort to accelerate the growth of a Digital India.”
Dr. Gulshan Rai
Chairperson, NIFientreC

Powering grassroots innovation

As part of this incubation program, Amazon will work with NIFientreC and lay emphasis on empowering innovators from the deepest pockets of the country to benefit from e-commerce. By bringing together experts from various fields, particularly from the Direct-To-Customer (D2C) industry, the program will hold masterclasses, workshops, and interactive training programmes on all aspects of product distribution and its availability for the end user in the most convenient ways.

“Amazon will now be closer than ever before, which is an inclusivity paradigm that the rest of the world may want to replicate.”
Dr Vipin Kumar
Director, NIF

There isn’t a better time for grassroots entrepreneurs to take their innovations directly to consumers across India. Dr Vipin Kumar, Director, NIF, said that this is “a milestone in India’s innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem that grassroots innovators and Amazon will now be closer than ever before, which is an inclusivity paradigm that the rest of the world may want to replicate.”

Towards digitization of SMBs

Speaking of how digitization can help create sustainable livelihoods in rural India, Manish Tiwari said that by expanding the reach of micro-entrepreneurs and unlocking their full potential, Amazon hopes to make selling on its marketplace “easier for thousands of innovators across rural India and help boost the local economy.”

The partnership will also help promote student innovations and budding entrepreneurs specialising in consumer-based technology at a grassroots level and accelerate the growth of a digital India.