Business Incubation Centre for north east India to be launched


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Kolkata 19th December 2014: Twenty five years ago, this is where the Ex-Bureaucrat turned entrepreneur Chandrashekhar Balagopal had started his IAS career journey and today, the love for this blessed land has brought him back again, but this time he has decided to don on the role of an business mentor to create an entrepreneurship and innovation environment. He hopes that the setting up of the Imphal Business Incubation Centre (IBIC) a not-for-profit NGO outfit will pave the way for development and empowerment of the local people and create new opportunities for business and commerce to help develop the entire north east region in India.

Having worked on the ground here, Bala (as he likes to be called) comes with a deep understanding of the local sensitivities as well as realises the potential the State of Manipur has to offer. Through the IBIC, Bala hopes to bring in a rare combination of his bureaucracy experience and his instincts as a successful businessman to instill a fresh thought process to incubate and bring out entreprises in the region.

Elaborating on this new venture, Balagopal said, “Our objective is to see if new Socio-business ventures can sprout up using our incubation eco-system in traditionally strong areas like Tourism, Handicraft, Ethnic Fabric design, Bamboo Furniture and more. There is ample scope for development in these sectors identified by us. What IBIC will provide is a platform to address the gap helping creating micro and small enterprise in the region.”

The IBIC will help bring in a structure, process and basic knowledge on how to start a business, making simple business plans, managing cash flow and networking with government bodies for grants, reaching out to potential buyers and mentorship, skill training and networking opportunities. IBIC sees good potential business opportunities in diverse areas like tourism, handicraft, ethnic designs, bamboo furniture, Agri produce processing and also in areas like health (nurse training), transportation & logistics.

Chandrasekhar Balagopal is a former IAS officer who was posted in the North-East region & Kerala from 1977 to 1983. He is also the founder of India’s first & the world’s largest blood bag manufacturing, Terumo Penpol. He also published his first book ‘On a Clear Day, You Can See India – The Little World of the District Official’ which is a nostalgic & entertaining memory of his experience during his early IAS career in the North-East. It brings out enriching stories about the North Eastern states of India. The book was published by HarperCollins India in 2013. It is this familiarity, passion and love for the native that persuaded him to return back to the region in his new avatar as a business mentor setting up the Imphal Business Incubation Centre to create an eco-system for entrepreneurs in the region.