Following the steps of Karnataka and West Bengal, the Tamil Nadu government has decided to set aside dedicated warehouses for startups to grow and climb the ladder of success. The warehouses will receive guidance from the industrial body for software companies, Nasscom. The first ‘Startup Warehouse’ is expected to be set up in Tidel Park, which is located in the heart of Chennai.

The Tidel centre is expected to have 10,000 square-feet of carpet area and a fully functional plug-and-play office space. It will have some 60 to 80 workstations and a minimum of four conference rooms. In addition to this, the centre will have basement car park, 100 percent power backup, cafeteria, central air-conditioning and leased internet lines. The Tidel Startup Warehouse will have Nasscom as its knowledge partner.

“As a major step to support young entrepreneurs, from 2014-15 onwards, this government will make available 10% of space exclusively for Information Technology Incubation Centres as ‘Warehouses for Startups’ in all information technology parks developed by the government. These centres will promote new ventures and assist upcoming entrepreneurs by creating an appropriate ecosystem,” reads an order released by the government.

Once the Chennai Warehouse becomes fully operational, the state government promoted IT parks in Hosur, Madurai, Tirunelveli, Trichy, Coimbatore and Salem will also have dedicated startups hubs.

The Startup Warehouse programme by the Tamil Nadu will help the startup ecosystem in the state to a great extent. It will create awareness amongst new entrepreneurs and help them build entrepreneurial capability through events. The programme will also help in linking mentors and investors with startups.

According to some sources, the startup warehouses in Tamil Nadu will be integrated into Nasscom’s 10,000 startup programme. Last week NASSCOM launched its second startup warehouse in Kolkata after already existing Bangalore startup warehouse under NASSCOM 10,000 Startups program.

Nasscom will have the responsibility of end-to-end programme management of the Tamil Nadu warehouses. According to the order released by the government, “This will be achieved by hiring a dedicated professional team to staff the warehouse to ensure smooth day-to- day operations of the Startup Warehouse.”

A dedicated board comprising one leader from the Tamil Nadu startup community, two representatives from Nasscom and one or more Tamil Nadu government representatives will be set up. The state government representatives will include managing director of ELCOT and state IT secretary.

“It is a great opportunity for Nasscom to be associated with the government to create an ecosystem for tech startups in Tamil Nadu. We will build all our warehouse activities through this and bring Tamil Nadu under the startup radar,” said K Purushothaman, senior director at Nasscom.

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