In a first-of-its-kind nationwide search, Tata Trusts’ Foundation for Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship (FISE) – which supports technology-based solutions for social impact through their lab-to-market journey – has announced the “Social Alpha Energy Challenge” to find high impact innovations that could catalyze system change in the field of energy.

With a focus on cleantech, sustainability and energy efficiency, the Social Alpha Energy Challenge aims to discover next-gen technology innovations that promise to unlock new solutions to India’s energy challenges or make existing energy networks smarter, cleaner and more affordable. In this ambitious hunt, the Challenge is inviting entries from innovators across various stages of the energy lifecycle - generation, transmission and distribution, storage, and consumption, in multiple sectors such as households, farm, industry, infrastructure, building, utility and transport.

The winners will be assessed on select parameters such as the breakthrough nature of the innovation, business viability, environmental sustainability, social impact, and scalability potential. The winners of the Energy Challenge will form the first cohort of enterprises for Tata Smart Energy Incubation Centre (TSEIC) - an incubator and start up accelerator being built in partnership between Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited and Tata Trusts.

A maximum of 10 winners will be selected to receive complete incubation support that will include:

-- 6-18 months of access to the upcoming Tata Smart Energy Incubation Centre in New Delhi

  • Access to state-of-the-art lab facilities and world class-infrastructure

  • Access to test beds on the ground for trials and field testing

  • Strategy and go-to-market (GTM) support

  • Mentorship by experts, specialists, and sector leaders

  • Gateway to a diverse and large investor ecosystem

Manoj Kumar, Head of Innovation, Tata Trusts and CEO, Social Alpha, said, “Two years back we created FISE as a key component of our Social Alpha architecture with a charter to catalyse innovation and entrepreneurship for impact. Tata Trusts’ continued commitment to sustainability and climate challenges has sharpened our focus further on creating a pipeline of high impact cleantech solutions that address the challenges of affordable energy access in complete convergence with our livelihoods and sustainability initiatives at the grassroots level. TSEIC is our dedicated incubation centre with a charter to solve various riddles of energy challenges using state of the art technology infrastructure and domain expertise.”

Praveer Sinha, CEO & Managing Director, Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited, said, “Tata Smart Energy Incubation Centre aims to bring innovation, domain and business expertise across the entire energy value chain to support scalable and sustainable solutions that helps to create new opportunities and nurtures societal value. T-SEIC will facilitate the vision to support and provide ecosystem for the start-up enterprises working to provide cost effective solutions. I believe, the TSEIC will go a long way for the development of Innovative and Cost Effective Technologies in India”.

The last date to submit applications is 7 April, 2018. Entrants for the energy challenge can register here:

To recall, last month FISE has also announced its ₹900 million plan where Tata Trusts will invest in those startups & ideas in which other investors hesitate to invest in. It will also launch lab-style incubators across India.

Additionally, deAsra Foundation, an organization aimed at empowering budding entrepreneurs has also collaborated with Tata Trusts along with Odisha Skill Development Authority (OSDA) to promote entrepreneurship across the country.

In 2015, Tata Trusts partnered with Google to give 1000 scholarships for the Android Nanodegree to deserving students in India. Tata Trust will alone offered 500 free scholarships for the complete Android Nanodegree in India.

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