Can you tell us about the Global Entrepreneur Program launched by Dassault Systèmes last year? How does this program help Indian start-ups and entrepreneurs achieve groundbreaking innovation?
The Global Entrepreneur Program is a worldwide initiative launched by Dassault Systèmes SOLIDWORKS to provide and facilitate the start-up companies’ dream of converting ideas into reality by giving access to latest technology solutions for a period of time. We realised that these start-up companies need the product design tools to initially build and prototype their first product before it gets manufactured. So, we encourage them to approach us through the Entrepreneur Program and get access to the latest software solutions at no cost for a limited time period till they build the prototype. As a part of the program, our extended partner community also provides necessary technical know-how to use the solutions to the start-up companies.
How many start-ups are you working with in India right now? What kind of profile are you looking for when you choose start-ups through the incubator and accelerator route?
We are working with more than 150 start-ups in India, wherein we have provided our software tools to design and prototype their products. In a year, we look forward to sign up to 40+ start-ups under the Entrepreneur Program. Besides, we also work with the accelerator and incubators to help the hardware start-up, as many of them will be incubated from the incubation cell/centre for a period of one to two years. Once they are out of the incubation cell, they are classified as start-up/entrepreneur companies and we continue to provide them with our software solutions for their design & development activities.
In parallel to this, any new start-up can also apply online and enroll for the Entrepreneur Program. Our early engagement team will scrutinise their applications, do the due diligence and recommend for the confirmation. Once approved, they will be provided with our software and platform. The basic parameters that we look for in the applications are—how innovative their product concepts are, how it brings value to humanity, does it have the environmental conservation and protection benefits, is it sustainable and green, how is the business plan developed for it, the potential investors’ and funding partners’ background, key consultants roped in for the development and so on.
What is the importance of connecting design-to-manufacturing ecosystem on cloud for start-ups?
As globalisation has been disrupting the way we do business today, designing and manufacturing anywhere is the ‘mantra’. Ecosystem on the cloud will be handy for the new age start-up to find the best partners for their design to manufacturing requirements. As a start-up, it will always be a challenge to set up the necessary infrastructure. In that case, any design and manufacturing solution on the cloud provides them the option of scalability, depending on business requirements.
What are the high growth areas for your company and what is your strategy to expand the SOLIDWORKS ecosystem in India? What do you have planned next for SOLIDWORKS India?
The start-up ecosystem in India possesses a huge amount of scope to grow. Our primary focus is on the manufacturing sector, and we are committed to empower manufacturing startups in India. Our strategy is to get more start-ups onboard over the next few years. We would engage with start-ups directly and through our Value Added Resellers, help them with training, co-marketing opportunities and design guidance. We also help them to connect with the investor community. Over the last two years, we have engaged with 32 incubators and accelerators, including the NASSCOM 10,000 start-up initiative.