Social Enterprises: A Venture Center perspective

Venture Center defines Social Enterprises as those startups with the following features:

  • Startups that aim to provide a solution to a significant problem or need of society and people at large especially under-served and under-privileged sections of the populations
  • Startups with a financially sustainable business model and/or a for-profit orientation (all though the profit targets may be muted).
  • Startups that benefit from good-will from impact investors (patient capital), funding agencies/ foundations/governments, employees, strategic partners, suppliers/customers etc due to the social goods & services that the startup can deliver.
  • Startups pursuing an agenda of inclusive innovation. Supporting technologies/ innovations/ enterprises aiming to deliver significant social impact using technologies that deliver more value from less resource for more people.
Who qualify as our Social Enterprises
  • Startups and entrepreneurs/innovators who meet Venture Center’s Social Enterprise definition 
  • Venture Center supports social innovators and social enterprises that leverage science and technology and follow a sustainable business model.

View our Social Innovation Initiatives

                        Include program

INCLUDE is Venture Center’s program for supporting social enterprises in partnership with CSIR-NCL and the CSIR-800 program.

More details:                

Social Innovation Tech Fellowships : For Early Stage Ideas

For Early Stage Ideas

Supported by Department of Biotechnology’s Biotech Industry Research Assistance Council (DBT-BIRAC), the Social Innovation Immersion Programme (SIIP) is a fellowship program under the SPARSH (Social Innovation Programme for Products: Affordable & Relevant to Societal Health) scheme. This scheme highlights the need of innovative solutions to society’s most pressing problems. He scheme tackles major social issues and offers new ideas for wide-scale change.

SPARSH objectives :

  • Identify and provide support to cutting edge innovations towards affordable product development that can bring significant social impact and address challenges of inclusive growth.
  • Provide support in form of impact funding of biotech product innovations (with social goals) that can be scaled.
  • Create and foster a pool of social innovators in biotech and provide a platform to share best practices, understand intricacies of business models in social innovation and network.

Theme calls under Social Innovation Immersion Program:

Call 1:   Maternal and Child Health: Pune MedTech Fellowships (2015-16)

Call 2:  Sanitation and Waste to Value: Sanitation Tech Fellowships   (2017-18)

 Call 3:  Ageing and Health: Geriatrics Tech Fellowships   (2018-19)

 Call 4:  Waste to Value: Social Innovation Tech Fellowships   (2020-22)

Call 5: Agritech: Social Innovation Tech Fellowships (2022-23)


Cohort Theme Number of fellows Immediate outcomes
      Startups formed Immediate next level funding raised Patent
1.       Maternal and Child Health: Pune MedTech Fellowships 



4 2


~ ₹ 1 cr

Investment raised ~ ₹ 1.17 cr 

2.       Sanitation and Waste to Value: Sanitation Tech Fellowships (2017-18)


4 3


~ ₹ 1.22 cr 2
3.       Ageing and Health: Geriatrics Tech Fellowships



3 2


~ ₹ 20 L Design registration: 1
4.       Waste to Value: Social Innovation Tech Fellowships



3 2


~ ₹ 64 L Brand name registered: 1

Provisional patent filed: 2

5.       Agritech: Social Innovation Tech Fellowships (2022-23)


4 Ongoing Ongoing Ongoing
  Total 18 9 ~ ₹ 413 L 7


Startup logos :





Campaigns and Action Groups around Socially Relevant Themes

Social Innovation Lecture Series (SIL)

About the series: This lecture series presents social innovators/entrepreneurs, their journey, their models for delivering social impact, the lessons learnt and their tips/pointers for the next generation of social innovators/ entrepreneurs.

Organized by: Social Innovations at Venture Center; INCLUDE program at Venture Center.

Supported by: Venture Center; NCL Innovations; DST-NSTEDB

Contact person: Dr. Mugdha Lele, Head for Social Innovations  ( )

List of talks conducted: Available here

                                                        Startup 101 Series 

Start-up 101 series is an induction series designed for young entrepreneurs who are initiating their entrepreneurial journeys. The aim is to expose them to the basic details and requirements in this journey from aspects of human resources, financial compliances, term sheets, how to raise money, technology commercialization, networking, how to pitch, preparing a business plan, venturing basics and such related aspects of entrepreneurship. Some practical tips and pointers based on real-life experiences will be shared by the speakers in this series. The idea is to enthuse and inspire young entrepreneurs and provide them a common launch pad to take off. 

THEME / MISSION :  Start-up India Mission / Skill India

Startup 101 :  #1

Startup 101 :  #2

Startup 101 : #3

Startup 101 : #4