Down The Memory Lane: agri Business Startup Weekend 2017

Nepal’s first Agribusiness Startup Weekend Kathmandu which was organized by Nepal Entrepreneurs Hub was held on 7-9th April 2017, at SAP Falcha, Kathmandu where the shortlisted 33 startup idea were made to better their ideas.

The first Agribusiness Startup Weekend Kathmandu followed the proven model of Startup Weekend where everyone pitched their startup idea and received feedback from their peers. Teams formed around the top ideas (as determined by popular vote) which was then taken to a 54-hour frenzy of business model creation, coding, designing, and market validation. The weekend concluded with final presentations in front of judging panel which constituted of entrepreneurs and business experts.

Mr. Anil Chitrakar then motivated the participants by presenting the immense possibilities that could transform the nation through agriBusiness. The presentation emphasized on different sorts of ideas, and the one that could prove its viability by implementing it. The presentation was also directed towards the policies or laws are not reached at local level.

All the 33 participants pitched their idea which is has been done only handful of times around the world. A voting session was conducted to select the top ten (10) ideas. Participants voted for the top three (3) preferred ideas excluding theirs.

The first day of the weekend ended with the selection of Top 10 ideas.

S.No Name of the Participants Startup Idea
1 Sarthak Lohani Goat Cheese Farming
2 Anupama Aryal Sitake Mushroom Farming
3 Suresh Simkhada Banana Wine Production
4 Santosh Pathak Step Up Agriculture Processing Center
5 Tarka Raj Panta Professional Bee-Keeping at Baitadi
6 Sabin Dahal Taja Fruit Ripening center
7 Anil Bhattarai Kiwi Farming
8 Sandeep Raut Morringa Production
9 Bidur Koirala Ecoplates
10 Usha Thapa Tatopani Ko Rosemary

The second day of agri startup weekend was devoted on mentoring from the mentors to validate their business idea. Resource person having an expertise in different domains of business were also there to help the participants. Mentors came in throughout the day for the mentoring session. Day 2 usually focused on business validation, market research, growth potential, customer validation among others.

The mentors that came in to mentor the participants during the day were:

  1. Mr. Bibek Shrestha (Agribusiness Market Development Expert, ABIC)
  2. Ms. Ritu Pradhan Malla (Sr. Investment Manager, BO2)
  3. Mr. Binoy Sharma (Executive Director, HURDEC)
  4. Mr. Sanam Chitrakar (Partner, Biruwa Ventures Pvt. Ltd.)
  5. Mr. Narottam Aryal (Executive Director, King’s College)
  6. Mr. Dambar Khanal (Managing Director, R&D Innovative)
  7. Ms. Sunita Nhemaphuki (Managing Director, R&D Innovative)
  8. Ms. Sushama Sharma (Head of Institutional Banking NMB Bank)

                                 

The final day of the Agribusiness Startup Weekend Kathmandu focused on the validation and work on towards the final pitch to the panel of judges. Mock pitching session was held in front of mock judges which gave the participants the feel of the final pitch and also provided them with suggestion where they can improve. Participants pitched their idea in front of the jury members at the evening. All ten teams worked thoroughly with their team members and resource persons visiting the available mentors. The final pitching session was moderated by Mr. Brijendra Rochan Joshi. The pitch was for 5 minutes followed by 3 minutes of question answer from the jury.

The jury members of the finale were

  1. Mr. Sunil K.C (CEO, NMB Bank)
  2. Mr. Pradip Maharjan (CEO, AEC-FNCCI)
  3. Mr. Gagan Pradhan (Managing Director, Himalayan Java).

The program finally ended with the announcement of finalists for the agriBusiness BootCamp 2017. The 5 finalists those were able to present their ideas and stand out in the evaluation criteria were

S.No Name of the Participant Startup Idea
1 Usha Thapa Magar Tatopani Ko Rosemary
2 Bidur Koirala Ecoplates
3 Sabin Dahal Taja Fruit Ripening Center
4 Santosh Pathak Step Up Agriculture Processing Center
5 Tarka Raj Panta Professional Beekeeping at Baitadi


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