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Industry chamber Assocham will launch a programme in 12 cities including Jammu and Srinagar to provide a platform for startups to pitch for funding and technology partners for their dream projects. The format of the programme 'Startup Elevator Pitch Series' will be such that entrepreneurs and founders will be given 300 seconds to explain the concept and idea of a service or product to a set of jury members. The Series will begin on September 7 from Jaipur followed by Pune, Lucknow, Chandigarh, Raipur, Indore, Guwahati, Kochi, Vishakhapatnam, Jammu and Srinagar. The finals are likely to be held in Delhi in February 2020, where the top three startups would be selected, said Anil Khaitan, chairman, Assocham National Council on Startups. Responding to a query, he said, the Indian economy was going through "a huge economic crisis" in terms of demand, public expenditure, private investments and exports due to a slowdown in the global economy. "The DPIIT (Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade) is doing an international conference on startups. So, the DPIIT asked us if we would join with them and do the finals in Delhi," Khaitan said.
The programme would be available for early stage startups between 0-2 years of operations. Those aspiring to scale up would also get opportunity for raising finance or technology or even marketing partnership with venture capitalists, mentors or independent professionals of global repute. It is also open for established startups between 25 years of operations. Among the 12 cities, except Delhi, other 11 are tier-II or III cities. "We believe the smaller cities are equally aspirational with abundant talent. Moreover, with the technology being the major enabler, the new age industries should reach throughout India," Assocham said. Each of the top three startups selected will get three meetings with investors and a chance to pitch directly to them.