Britannia Industries on Wednesday announced the third season of their startup contest for aspiring women entrepreneurs particularly homemakers. A maximum of up to 10 winners will be rewarded with Rs 10 lakhs each. Britannia has also collaborated with Google to provide all participants access to a digital business training programme containing multiple lessons to help candidates get the necessary skills to run and grow their businesses. The lessons would be available in English, Hindi, Telugu, Kannada, Tamil, and Bengali. Britannia would provide online mentorship lectures for up to 10,000 top participants from industry experts on setting up and scaling ventures.
“There are more and more women who want to start up. So, we wanted to make sure that we could do something about that and how we want to leverage technology. 77 per cent of women we reached out to spoke about technology being a key enabler in terms of breaking barriers of how to be an entrepreneur,” Vinay Subramanyam, Vice-President, Britannia Industries said at the launch of the contest.
The ideas submitted by candidates will be evaluated based on set criteria and post evaluation, a shortlisted candidate list will be published within 60 days of the contest end date. The registrations for the contest are already underway till November 5, 2021. “One of the things that were very important as part of this collaboration with Google was to make sure that the digital skilling resources are accessible to every participant. In addition to the seed capital, we are trying to see how we can make accessible relevant content and know-how that can help women towards realising their entrepreneurial dream,” added Subramanyam.
The first season in 2019 had received over 1 million entries while the second season got over 1.5 million entries. Before launching the third season, Britannia had launched a survey with a sample size of 1,818 housewives across 13 cities earlier this year to understand how barriers and drivers for women to start up had evolved over the past three years. The survey noted 62 per cent women aspired of starting their own business however lack of time due to home responsibilities was a barrier for 73 per cent respondents. For 53 per cent lack of guidance was the challenge and for 50 per cent, the issue was insufficient funds.
“There was this desire to start something of my own but perhaps the biggest challenge was that there was very little direction as to how to start it all. The other big thing was access to funding. I had no option but to sell all my assets to start the business. Today there are many more examples of women entrepreneurs and so there is a cultural openness for women in business that wasn’t there in the past. However, there’s a long way to go and I’m not sure that if the next decade is enough for women (entrepreneurs) to be big enough,” Shubhra Chadda, Co-founder, Chumbak Designs said at a webinar organised by Britannia ahead of the launch of the contest.