Hyderabad, 25 April 2019: T-Hub, leading India’s pioneering innovation ecosystem that powers next-generation products and new business models, Smart Cities Mission (SCM) of Government of India and Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), NITI Aayog, today hosted Smart City Arcade, a consultative session with Smart City startups seeking to engage with India’s Smart Cities. This event helped corporate and government organisations to explore emerging Indian Smart City technologies pitched and showcased at T-Hub premises.

Panel Discussion Smart City Arcade by T-Hub & NITI Aayog
Panel Discussion picture (From Left to Right) : N.Ravi Kiran (Commissioner, Greater Warangal Municipal Corporation), Arvind Tiwari (TiE Chair IoT & Evangelist), NSN Murthy (Partner & Leader Smart Cities, PwC), Mudit Narian (Founding Manager, Atal Mission Innovation), Mani Vajipey (Co-founder & CEO, Banyan Nation(T-Hub incubated startup)

This edition of T-Hub’s Arcade Series was focused on areas such as smart transportation, waste management, water, intelligent housing, smart digital infrastructure, sustainable ecosystem, and accessibility and inclusivity. While startups will benefit from this programme to scale up with speed and pitch to their prospect client partners, the Smart Cities in return will get to explore innovative startup products, opportunities to possibly co-create solutions, or opt for high-yielding investments. This event had Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary, Government of Telangana (I&C, ITE&C), and Kunal Kumar, Mission Director of SCM and Joint Secretary of the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, as keynote speakers. A panel session on ‘Role of Innovation and Technology in building Smart Cities’ was moderated by Mani Vajipey, Co-Founder & CEO of Banyan Nation – T-Hub incubated startup – with such esteemed panellists as Mudit Narain from AIM, NSN Murthy from PwC, and Arvind Tiwary, a Smart City Evangelist.

Kunal Kumar, Mission Director of Smart Cities Mission and Joint Secretary of the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, said, “Innovation will play an increasingly critical role in improving the lives of India’s urban citizens. The Smart Cities Mission is making efforts and designing a platform to connect the Smart Cities to Indian urban-tech startups, enabled by incubators to localise the solutions to each city’s challenges. This platform for innovation will empower Indian entrepreneurs to provide local solutions for local needs.”

Jayesh Ranjan at T-Hub's Smart City Arcade
Jayesh Ranjan at T-Hub’s Smart City Arcade

Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary, Government of Telangana (I&C, ITE&C), said, “The smart cities programme rolled out by the Government of India has been a great opportunity for startups to come up with innovative products and solutions. There are many areas of urban governance and delivery of citizen services that can be improved with the use of technology. Many startups from Telangana have already been successful in providing innovative smart city solutions. The Telangana government wants to maximise these opportunities for our homegrown startups by coming out with a structured approach in compiling problem statements, identifying relevant startups which potentially have a solution to these problems, organise PoCs, bring in corporate and academic/R&D collaborations, and then facilitate scaling up of the solutions in partnership with the smart cities National Mission.”

The arcade series focuses on enabling startups to find the right corporate partners who could license, buy out their products, or onboard them as vendors. The programme is strategically designed for corporates and startups to explore possible partnerships and expand their businesses.

Ravi Narayan, CEO of T-Hub, said, “Developing a world-class infrastructure and a strong set of smart cities is vital for India’s growth story, and innovation is the only way to achieve that effectively. T-Hub is excited to join hands with the Indian government bodies NITI Aayog, Atal Innovation Mission, and Smart Cities Mission to make this a reality for our country. Our smart city arcade will bring together startups, with innovations that solve urbanisation challenges, and industry, who will use those solutions, to empower the growth of smart cities in India.”

Indian cities contribute 70 per cent of GDP and 90 per cent of revenues; hence, there is a dire need for initiatives like Smart City Arcade that can address the issues in clean energy, water conservation and management, smart mobility, architecture and design, health tech, and waste management sectors. The startups that were shortlisted to participate, pitch, and showcase demonstrations include Cognitifai, Sanshodhan: An E-Waste Exchange Pvt Ltd, Nimble Vision Pvt Ltd, Vivish Technologies Pvt Ltd (myGate), SmartTerra, and SMARG Technologies Private Limited among others.

About T-Hub: T-Hub enables and empowers an ecosystem hungry for innovation. Based out of Hyderabad, India, it leads India’s pioneering innovation ecosystem that powers next-generation products and new business models. It uses the Triple Helix model of innovation based on interaction and collaboration between industry, academia, and government. Incorporated in 2015, it has provided over 1100+ national and international startups with access to better technology, talent, mentors, customers, corporates, investors and government agencies. T-Hub also provides thought leadership for Telangana and other state and central government organizations to build innovation ecosystems. It has elevated innovation for leading national and global corporates, transforming enterprise business models for better.

About NITI Aayog: NITI Aayog is the premier policy ‘Think Tank’ of the Government of India, providing both directional and policy input. While designing strategic and long- term policies and programmes for the Government of India, NITI Aayog also provides relevant technical advice to the centre and states. NITI Aayog is also developing itself as a state-of-the-art resource centre, with the necessary resources, knowledge and skills that will enable it to act with speed, promote research and innovation, provide strategic policy vision for the government, and deal with contingent issues.

About Atal Innovation Mission: Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) is the Government of India’s endeavour to promote a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship. Its objective is to serve as a platform for promotion of world-class innovation hubs, grand challenges, startup businesses and other self-employment activities, particularly in technology-driven areas.

About Smart City Mission: Smart Cities Mission (SCM) is the flagship mission of Government of India aimed to drive economic growth and improve quality of life of people by enabling local area development and harnessing technology, especially technology that leads to Smart outcomes. The Mission promotes cities that provide core infrastructure and give a decent quality of life to citizens, a clean and sustainable environment and application of ‘Smart’ Solutions. Application of Smart Solutions will enable cities to use technology, information and data to improve infrastructure and services. Comprehensive development in this way will improve quality of life, create employment and enhance incomes for all, especially the poor and the disadvantaged, leading to inclusive cities.

The Mission covers 100 Cities focusing on sustainable and inclusive development creating a replicable models which act as light houses to other aspiring cities. The Mission fosters innovation and recognizes the immense potential of Start-Ups to cater to the needs of smart cities, develop innovative solutions to complex problems of the cities and help the Mission meet its objective.