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ONDC announces Build for Bharat initiative 

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The initiative intends to tap into India’s technological and entrepreneurial potential with an expected participation of over 2,00,000 participants representing startups, companies and colleges.

New Delhi: Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) has announced a new initiative called ‘Build for Bharat’, a release by ONDC stated on Monday.

The new initiative is in collaboration with Google Cloud India, Antler, Paytm, Protean and Startup India, the release added.

Through this initiative, ONDC aims to tackle diverse challenges in digital commerce, promoting industry innovation to develop practical solutions in this space.

 T Koshy, MD and CEO at ONDC, said, “We are excited to organize this nationwide initiative focused on building innovative solutions for India’s rapidly growing digital commerce ecosystem.”

“Initiatives like ‘Build for Bharat’ will unleash the talent and potential of India’s startup and student community to drive meaningful impact at scale. Through grants, investments and recognition, we hope to nurture the best ideas into sustainable businesses.” added Koshy.

The ‘Build for Bharat’ initiative intends to tap into India’s technological and entrepreneurial potential with an expected participation of over 2,00,000 participants representing startups, companies and colleges.

To kick-start the initiative, an event took place on December 4, unveiling the problem statements for participants and extending an invitation for registration.

Covering Retail, Mobility, F&B, Financial Services and Logistics sectors, the initiative is designed to deliver three distinct outcomes as follows:

Category 1 ‘NextGen Ventures’’ is designed to supercharge venture creation on ONDC. Open to aspiring founders exploring multiple ideas or early-stage founder teams working on an idea, this track provides a pathway to raising capital, launching, scaling companies, and incubating new businesses.

Category 2 includes Scalable solutions and invites participation from organizations or individuals including students with a focus on solving friction points faced by Network Participants.

Category 3 includes Foundation solutions, exclusively for college students (18+) to identify proof of concept for the friction points faced by NPs.

Prizes and Collaborations

Category 1 winners in ‘NextGen Ventures’ will enjoy exclusive opportunities from Antler in India and mentorship from industry stalwarts. They receive a chance to avail equity-free grants of up to Rs 5 Crores. Winning teams also gain the opportunity to join Antler Residency, opening avenues for potential VC funding.

This residency program not only offers capital but also serves as a platform for early founders to validate their ideas, build their teams, and launch and scale their companies. Moreover, Google India will provide shortlisted teams with Cloud credits accompanied by valuable tech guidance.

Category 2 eligible winners are slated to receive Cloud credits from Google Cloud India for shortlisted teams and also for eligible winning startups.

Category 3 winners benefit from Google Cloud India’s contributions, including Cloud credits for shortlisted teams and credits for eligible winning startups.

Incorporated on 31st December 2021, Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) is an initiative of the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India, envisioned to create a facilitative model to revolutionize digital commerce.

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