10 Women Led Technology Startups Receive the Women Entrepreneur Quest (WEQ) 2017 Award

Bangalore, November 17, 2017: The AnitaB.org India, a nonprofit organization focused on the advancement of women in computing and technology today announced the Top 10 winners of the 7th edition of the Women Entrepreneur Quest (WEQ) 2017. WEQ is a unique contest for technology startups founded by women. All the Top 10 winners received an all-expenses-paid experiential learning visit to the Silicon Valley, US.

The WEQ 2017 finale was held today during AnitaB.org’s flagship conference in Bangalore, the Grace Hopper Celebration India 2017 (GHCI 17), the largest conference for women technologists in the country.

The Top 10 winners were selected from 257 applications received from across India. The applicants were evaluated on their product and business model.

The Top 10 winners of WEQ 2017 are

During the Silicon Valley visit, the WEQ Top 10 winners will get the opportunity to network with key stakeholders in the Silicon Valley ecosystem such as leading technology companies, startups, investors, officials, incubators, accelerators and universities. They will also receive expert guidance on important business functions and aspects that will help them further grow their business. A key focus of the Silicon Valley visit is to provide inspiration to the Top 10 winners by interacting with role models and also giving them a chance to showcase their business.

WEQ 2017 is sponsored by AnitaB.org India and the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India. The Indo-US Science and Technology Forum (IUSSTF) also plays an integral role in supporting and organizing WEQ 2017. The partnership has existed since 2014 and is strongly committed to supporting the Government of India’s policies and programs, promoting entrepreneurship among women in India. The WEQ 2017 contest and Silicon Valley Learning Program is focused on identifying and rewarding highly talented and capable women entrepreneurs.

“Technology startups are driving innovation for almost all industries. The percentage of male entrepreneurs is much more than the women and we have to work towards making it 50:50. Women need to be equally included in driving innovation and economic growth that should be enjoyed by all, irrespective of one’s gender. It has been encouraging to have the support of our partners DST, Government of India and IUSSTF in growing women entrepreneurs in technology,” said Geetha Kannan, Managing Director, AnitaB.org India.

Dr. Anita Gupta, Scientist G/Adviser and Associate Head-Innovation and Entrepreneurship, DST, Government of India said, “Recognizing the fact that women are a valued partner in the growth of a nation’s economy, the Government is taking several initiatives for women empowerment by nurturing entrepreneurship. Its continued partnership with the organizations AnitaB.org and IUSSTF, aims to expand the base of women tech entrepreneurs in India.”

Dr. Rajiv Tayal , Executive Director, Indo-U.S Science and Technology Forum (IUSSTF) said, “Active participation of women in the entrepreneurial landscape is extremely important to promote inclusive growth and fulfilling the national agenda for rapid socio-economic growth. WEQ provides a very good platform for women to showcase their entrepreneurial skills and achieve necessary traction in expanding their outreach. IUSSTF is rightly positioned to leverage its vast network in India and United States to support the top winners of WEQ Contest to go that extra mile by providing unique exposure to the globally recognized Silicon Valley Ecosystem.” 

For more information please visit https://ghcindia.anitab.org/

Photo Captions: Top 10 Winners of WEQ 2017 along with Geetha Kannan, MD, AnitaB.org India, Brenda Darden Wilkerson, President & CEO, AnitaB.org, Dr. Anita Gupta,Scientist G/Adviser and Associate Head-Innovation and Entrepreneurship, DST, Government of India, Dr. Rajiv Tayal , Executive Director, Indo-U.S Science and Technology Forum.

About the Grace Hopper Celebration India (GHCI)
GHCI is India’s largest technical conference for women in computing and technology. The conference is co-presented by the AnitaB.org India and Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) India. AnitaB.org India has been successfully organizing this annual conference since 2010. GHCI focuses on the career, research and entrepreneur interests of women computing and technology. Presenters at the conference are leaders in their respective fields from industry, academia and government. The conference results in collaborative proposals, networking and mentoring for attendees. The conference also offers professional development through a variety of activities. For more information visit: ghcindia.anitab.org.

About the AnitaB.org
AnitaB.org connects, inspires and guides women in computing and organizations that view technology innovation as a strategic imperative. Founded in 1997 by computer scientist Anita Borg, our reach extends to more than 87 countries. We believe technology innovation powers the global economy and that women are crucial to building technology the world needs. AnitaB.org is a not-for-profit 501(c) 3 charitable organization in the US and a non-profit organization registered as a section-8 Company under the Companies Act, 2013 in India. For more information, visit www.anitab.org.

About Department of Science & Technology (DST)http://www.dst.gov.in/

Department of Science & Technology (DST) of the Government of India is in the forefront of  promoting new areas of Science and Technology and plays the role of a nodal department for organizing, coordinating and promoting S&T activities in the country. DST has been pioneer in promoting the Startup initiative through Science and Technology Parks in early 80s and more now with a network of over 100 Technology Business Incubators across the country. To realize Hon’ble PM’s vision on Startup India as an important tool to transform India, it has recently rolled out a new program NIDHI as a National Initiative for Developing and Harnessing Innovations (NIDHI).

About The Indo-US Science and Technology Forum (IUSSTF):http://www.iusstf.org

The Indo-US Science and Technology Forum (IUSSTF), established under an agreement between the Governments of India and the United States of America in March 2000, is an autonomous, not for profit society that promotes and catalyzes Indo-US bilateral collaborations in science, technology, engineering, biomedical research and innovation through substantive interaction among government, academia and industry. As a grant making organization, the principle objective of IUSSTF is to provide opportunities, to exchange ideas, information, skills and technologies, and to collaborate on scientific and technological endeavors of mutual interest that can translate the power of science for the benefit of mankind at large. IUSSTF through its bilateral United States-India Science and Technology Endowment Fund ( USISTEF) http://www.usistef.org; also promotes joint activities that would lead to Innovation and technopreneurship through application of Science and Technology.

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