As part of its ongoing efforts to scale the growth of its booming startup ecosystem, iStart Rajasthan — the state government’s flagship startup program — hosted the Rajasthan Investor Conclave across the state’s divisional headquarters on January 16 and 17, 2023.

Organised in partnership with Jaipur-based virtual incubator and fundraising platform Startup Chaupal, the conclave was a common platform for startups and investors to network and find opportunities for partnerships. The event also saw investors from across India engage with startups with select iStart recognized startups having an opportunity to pitch before them.

Held at Bhamashah Techno Hub in Jaipur, the two-day conclave also held workshops, panel discussions, and mentoring sessions from industry leaders and other successful startup founders, to help startups in their journey to scale.

Day 1 of the conclave kicked off with a fireside chat on Rajasthan’s Startup Ecosystem with Mandar Joshi, angel investor and Executive Chairman, MStrategy Global, moderated by Sumit Srivastawa, Founder & CEO, Startup Chaupal. This was followed by sessions on Startup Valuation by Maneesh Srivastava, Founding Partner, Alphavalue Consulting, and on ‘How to give Elevator Pitch’ by Sumit Srivastawa.

The second day saw two more panel discussions on the Rajasthan startup ecosystem and investment opportunities. The first, on ‘Funding: Realities and Roads Ahead’, had Mandar Joshi; Dr Priyanka Mathur, Founder and CEO, MediPocket World; Aditya Arora, angel investor and CEO, Faad Network; and Amit Purohit, Startup Rajasthan (iStart) mentor share their knowledge on what startups need to keep in mind while approaching investors. The second panel saw Yogesh Chaudhary, Owner, Jaipur Rugs; Sandeep Jain, Director, Tradeswift Broking; and Sushil Sharma, Founder and CEO, Marwari Catalysts talk about the ‘Dynamics of Startup Ecosystem in Rajasthan’.

Following up on the previous day’s session on elevator pitching, 25 startups were selected and gave elevator pitches to investors on stage, with another select few having the opportunity to deep dive in a closed door session with investors as well.

The Rajasthan Investor Conclave also helped familiarise startups and investors with the Rajasthan Startup Policy 2022, that aims to promote Rajasthan as a hub for innovation and boost startup growth across industry verticals and encourage diversity and sustainability within the startup ecosystem.

In alignment with its plan of ensuring entrepreneurs outside major cities are not left behind, iStart Rajasthan and Startup Chaupal also organised two Startup Conclaves in Udaipur on January 27 and in Bikaner on February 2. Both editions had a panel discussion on ‘Entrepreneurship: Opportunities & Roads Ahead’, as well as a talk on ‘Startup Process & Art of Storytelling’, while attendees at Udaipur also heard from Laksyaraj Singh Mewara in a fireside chat about his ‘Journey from Royal to a Hardcore Entrepreneur’. Jai Kumar Agarwal, Owner, Papadmal Agro Food was another speaker at the conclave in Bikaner, with iStart Rajasthan signing a memorandum of understanding with RNB Global University.

A third Startup Conclave was held at Kota, on February 27, with two panel discussions held. The first was on the topic “Investors’ Perspective on Tier 3 City Startups”, with panelists Pratekk Agarwaal, Founder and Managing Partner, GrowthCap Ventures; Ujwal Sutaria, Founding Partner, TDV Partners; Yamika Mehra, Partner, 1stCheque by Favcy; Mandar Joshi, and Sumit Srivastawa. A second panel, on ‘Challenges and Opportunities for Startups from Tier 3 Cities’ had Nikhil Baheti, Founder, MedCords; Abhay Singh, Founder, Ekki Foods; Aishwarya Jhawar, Founder, Ekatra; and Bhagwati Rathi, Founder, Digital GoWhere as speakers. This was followed by an elevator pitch session by 25 pre-selected startups, and a deep dive with five shortlisted startups.

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