TheNFAPost Podcast

Bengaluru, NFAPost: The development assumes significance because it is for the first time in India a former minister is associated with a fund house and formally joining hands with startup ecosystem.

Propel is a passionate initiative by young and experienced entrepreneurs turned serial investors who have gone through the grind of starting up. Propel’s vision is to get early-age startups off the ground by providing them with the right resources and omnipresent opportunities that will help them navigate the startup world at full-power.

Priyank Kharge, who is currently serving legislative assembly member from Chitapur, made his mark as a Minister while holding the Information Technology and Bio-Technology, Science and Technology Department portfolio under Siddaramaiah government and was instrumental in bringing companies like Apple and Foxconn among others to Bengaluru despite other luring from various state government.

Under his leadership, the startup ecosystem in Karnataka found a new found synergy with pro active engagement with industry leaders, both global and India, and associations. He was instrumental in ELEVATE Karnata, a startup incubation programme by engaging with five other cities in Karnataka and major educational institutions in the state.

Interacting with NFAPost, Priyank Kharge said ELEVATE Karnataka really gave me new insights on startup journey and entrepreneurs in Karnataka. “I always wanted to be with these innovative minds. Here we should also understand that the startup ecosystem in the state needs comprehensive support in the form of fund support, idea validation and access to the market. I feel that Propel can help in this regard,” he said.

Priyank Khargealso said it is great to see Bengaluru and Karnataka is the epicentre of the emergence of the newer programme to support these talent pools. “I do believe the innovation ecosystem in the state, especially in Bengaluru, will flourish, It will propel new technology companies which will solve not only India problems but also global problems,” he said.

Besides giving financial support of up to Rs 2 crore, Propel will help startup and individuals with strategic and mentorship support. Here Propel will help in coming up with VC connect, legal support, industry connect based on their products and services. Propel will also help these startup with various tools for policy advocacy, branding and digital strategy, marketing and sales strategy.

According to company sources, Propel will focus on technology businesses such as security, semiconductors and embedded devices. “Our like-minded team intends to support entrepreneurs to scale up as well as accelerate the growth of their startup. The team understands the landscape and has navigated the business complexities across verticals.
 The initiative will ensure that the Propel team works closely with entrepreneurs so that they remain focused on building and scaling their businesses,” said Propel board member Srinivas Moramchetty.

Srini Moramchetty, who is driving Propel,  has over 2 decades of experience spanning IT / Sales & Marketing in United States and India. He is a serial entrepreneur and an angel investor investing specially in Technology space. Srini Moramchetty holds MS Degree from NJIT, USA.

The company has other partners which linclude Saravana Mani who Heads Open Innovation at Future Group and Vishal Verma who is Managing Partner at Edgewood Ventures, LLC.
San Jose, California. Shrenik Dagli who is QBE’s head of technology for data, advanced analytics and integration is also part of Propel.

At age 38, Priyank Kharge was the youngest minister to be sworn into the Karnataka Cabinet. He is the son of veteran Congress leader  Mallikarjun Kharge.


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