With the world as we know it changing in 2020, businesses went into a frenzy. With some shutting shops and many others hopping on the digitisation bandwagon to survive. While the ecosystem came together to help the startups survive, the state known for its efforts towards this ecosystem was amongst the fastest to overcome the pandemic-induced challenges — Kerala.
While it was the first state to report a Covid case, it was also the first to control the situation in a seamless and effective manner. And the major credit belongs to the startups of the state which were quick to help the state counter the aftereffects. A testament to that is the fact that in April 2020, Kerala’s example was used in international studies on how the state might serve as a model for other countries in combating Covid-19.
To enable this ecosystem further, the state’s nodal agency for startups, KSUM (Kerala Startup Mission), recently concluded the fifth edition of its Big Demo Day.
The event was born with the aim to help social impact startups pitch their solutions to corporates and MSMEs. Positioning it is a win-win situation for both corporates / SMBs and startups, KSUM facilitates the participation of multiple stakeholders to attract revenue to the startup environment while also providing corporates or SMEs with well-suited and scalable startups.
Objectives And Highlights Of Big Demo Day 5.0
Held on 24th May 2021 in association with Climate seed funds, Habitat for Humanity, Marrico innovation foundation, FATE foundation, IAMAI, Villgrow, UNDP, the event saw around 12 startups from across sectors showcase their innovative and cutting-edge products for the industry to leverage.
The goal of the event was to:
- Enable startups to generate leads and business from the industry
- Enhance brand visibility through collaborations with public companies
- Enable fundraising from corporates, VCs/ Angel investors
- Enable industry to leverage products and services from the startup ecosystem
“The past four editions of the event have helped startups from various sectors receive encouraging response from the industry, despite coinciding with the first wave of Covid. Held along the same lines, this year we saw more registrations from solutions to the second wave,” said Sawad Sayyid, business coordinator, KSUM.
KSUM selected startups based on market demand, with an emphasis on solutions that are already available and can be scaled up for enterprises of all sizes.
The event saw the participation of corporates such as CISCO, Aspinwall & Company, Kuttukaran Group, Koncriva Group Pvt Ltd, KITCO, Suyati technologies, Bajaj Allianz, Dubai World Trade Center. Adding to that, it was also attended by investors and stalwarts such as Unicorn India, Indian Angel Network, Teekey Investments, BP Ventures, TCN Investments, Malabar Angel Network, Venture Way Funds and more.
Startups And Their Solutions Showcased At Big Demo Day 5.0
To help the successful penetration of the selected startups in the market, the event has a three-step approach — Reverse Pitching, Big Demo Day and Industry-Startup Platform. Here are the 13 startups that showcased their solutions in Big Demo Day 5.0:
The startup, known for its Solar Powered Ferry, showcased two solutions CIPS (Compact Intelligent Power Supply) and ECN3600 Marine Electric Steering.
Commenting on the startup and the need for its solutions, Sayyid said, “With its solar boats, the aim of the startup is to reduce noise and vibrations, and there is no odour of fuel or fuel fumes. As a result, commuters will have a pleasant ride.”
NAVA Design & Innovation
The startup’s Coconut Sap (Neera / Toddy) Tapping Device solves the shortage of skilled manual tapper shortage in the global coconut sap tapping industry. Its solutions benefit the producers of Neera, Coconut Honey, Coconut Sugar, Toddy, Coconut Arrack and more.
“Coconut tapping provides 10 times the income to the farmers than from coconut sales. Unfortunately, the process is a dangerous one and there are very few skilled labourers for it. Nava Designs’ robot solves both the problems for the industry,” explained Sayyid.
The startup’s manhole cleaning robot, Bandicoot, had made headlines even before the first wave of the pandemic with its solutions eliminating human intervention in the process, thus making the task simpler while also saving the lives of the labourers. With the pandemic and studies showing traces of the virus in the sewage water, the startup rose to the rescue of the sanitation workers.
Additionally, solving for the challenges of detecting clogged manholes or predicting their overflow, it recently announced the launch of G-Beetle, a manhole monitoring system (MMS).
An aggregator of transport solutions, VST Mobility’s solutions dealt with areas spanning from real-time vehicle tracking to monitoring of fuel and driver behaviour. However, with the pandemic making its presence known in most parts of Kerala, the startup launched — an automated mask disposal machine — BIN-19 and — UV light-based multipurpose disinfector — UV SPOT.
In the Big Demo Day 5.0, it showcased BIN-19 which comes with various features such as an auto sanitiser dispenser (remotely alerts if it’s empty), a mobile application to find Bin-19, a web portal for status alerts and more.
Incorporated in the year 2018, Lamaara focusses on developing sustainable and innovative products for a greener planet. With its primary product ‘iBO’, a bottle with a mineral organic filter, the startup claims to remove 99% microorganisms, chemical, colour and odour.
During the event, it showcased iBO and WATERWALL. The latter is a new age purifier equipped with Smart Alkaline Technology and multiple purification processes.
This startup has developed Veineux, a device that uses augmented reality (AR) to track veins. It aims at reducing failed attempts during different intravenous medical procedures. The product is portable, equipped with multi intensity levels, and loaded with a rechargeable battery lasting about 4 hours of continuous use.
The startup provides cost-effective solutions for underwater intervention with its drone, TUNA. Working up to a depth of 200 m, it enables visual inspection/survey of submerged structures. Its features include real-time HD video images, weighs less than 10 kgs, are easily accessible and controllable, can be connected to laptops, joysticks and more.
Last month itself the startup was amongst the two that received an award by the technology development board under the Union department of science & technology in the MSME category.
The startup has developed a therapy toolkit by the name Auticare, for the skill development and training of children with high-functioning autism (HFA) – or autism without intellectual disability – and other neurodevelopmental disorders. The toolkit guides therapists and physicians in diagnosis and interventions while providing them with relevant information about the patient’s progress.
“The response-based model of Auticare generates feedback based on the patient’s interactions and records progress within the simulated environments. These data get stored in the cloud for further effective reference and diagnosis that would aid doctors,” founder Sathyanarayanan AR had earlier told Inc42.
Launched last month itself, the startup’s Wolf Airmask is a real-time air sterilizer for indoor spaces. It works on Plasma Technology, emitting trillions of negative ions per second into the ambient air. In just a mere span of a month of pioneering the device, the startup has received from 30 countries for 20K pieces.
The startup’s jeeva vaayu series (JV-50) emergency ventilators are volume-based emergency ventilators specially designed to meet the covid-19 crisis. It works on the basis of an automated Ambu bag mechanism, which is portable and compact and every device is calibrated. Having calibrated every device by NABL accredited agency, the startup has developed three variants of the ventilator.
In September 2020, a consortium of three startups — Kochi-based Sinergia Media Labs and Ionics 3DP, and Singapore-based Aruvii — developed iSave to counter the fast-deteriorating situation in the country. Individualised system for Augmenting Ventilator Efficacy (iSAVE) repurposes existing medical flow valves to allow a single ventilator to provide personalised support to at least two patients.
Realising the need for Indian businesses to adopt modern technologies to treat water, Ecodew focusses on providing solutions for the following five segments: sewage treatment, effluent treatment, drinking water, industrial water, cooling water, agricultural & environmental products.
During the event, it showcased the RO DW series, a drinking water reverse osmosis machine, the product aims to remove total dissolved solids.
Despite having only recently concluded the fifth edition of the event, KSUM has already opened the registrations for the next edition, to be held on August 11, 2021, for enterprise tech startups.