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Launching the BarrierBreak Assistive Technology Startup Mentorship Program

28 September, 2020 by Shilpi Kapoor

A man on a wheelchair working on a laptop using assistive technology device

BarrierBreak is proud to announce the 3 month Assistive Technology Startup (ATS) Mentorship Program to assist startup founders focusing on solutions for people with disabilities. The ATS Mentorship Program will help startups identify & solve for their  focus areas.

What we bring to the table is the deep knowledge of the disability sector, market understanding from India  & global perspective & business acumen.

Our 1st Cohort will be mentored personally by Shilpi Kapoor, our CEO who has proven that disability solutions can be nurtured into a sustainable model. Being a serial entrepreneur herself, she saw this gap in the Assistive Technology startup community and is looking to break this barrier and see people succeed in this space.

India Perspective

In the last 5 years, India has seen a surge in startups focusing on assistive technology or disability solutions. This has been a pleasant change. Since this is a relatively nascent segment, we do see them struggle to find the business model & market access that would help them become sustainable, scalable and profitable.

In the period pre-COVID, we saw 4 startups bear the brunt and have to close down. Yes, in the startup world, not every startup is a success. A recent study, “Entrepreneurial India,” by the IBM Institute for Business Value and Oxford Economics, found that 90% of Indian startups fail within the first five years. So yes, this will be true for startups focusing on disability, but can we give them a winning chance?

Why BarrierBreak ATS Mentorship Program?

The BarrierBreak ATS Mentorship Program will be a 1-1 mentoring with the startup founders where they will learn to think through their challenges & opportunities, identify solutions, create task oriented measurable plans to get to their goals. We will be starting small with only 3 startups in the C0hort.

We don’t ask you for Equity but we do ask you to be open and transparent, so we can together find the solutions.

Your idea is yours, all we want to do is support you think it through and help you succeed.

We won’t be doing the hard work for you, you will be doing it for yourself.

We don’t offer you heaven and earth in 3 months, but we do offer that you will have clarity on your plan and steps ahead to achieve your goals.

Shilpi believes that “Disability is so entrenched in the charity model, and we see most startups struggle to break out of that mindset. Yes, CSR should be one of the areas for disability solutions to be delivered to the end customers, but the differentiator will be to see how we can look at other business models to scale and create impact. So if you want to break the shackles and think out of the box, then send in your nomination for the BarrierBreak Assistive Technology Mentorship Program.”

If you have any questions, send in an email to mentorship@barrierbreak.com with your mobile number, so we can call you back to discuss.

Timeline

  • Applications Close – 8th October
  • Application Interview Process – 12th to 16th October
  • Final Cohort Announcement – 22nd October
  • Mentorship Period – 1st November to 31st January

How to Apply

Before you send in your nominations, ensure you are:

  • Open to discussions, suggestions, and feedback
  • Committed to investing time and working on the plans
  • Ready to think out of the box

If you are an entrepreneur focused on a solution that impacts people with disabilities, don’t wait, Apply Now!

 

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