Interview with Mr.J.M.Noronha, Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration (CIBA) Goa

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CIBA Goa

CIBA Goa

Goa, one of the most beautiful places in India is slowly buzzing with entrepreneurship. Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration(CIBA) based out of Verna, Goa is a section 25 company established with the support from Department of Science and Technology, Government of India and Department of Science, Technology and Environment, Government of Goa. With 17 incubatees so far, the Incubator is interested in domains such as ITES, Food Processing, Clean Technologies and also mixed technologies. CIBA encourages entrepreneurship through a variety of programs it hosts in Goa.

CIBA is headed by J.M.Noronha(CEO, CIBA), who is also Chairman, Goa State Pollution Control Board , Member, National Advisory Committee, EDP, DST, Govt.of India and Member, Goa State Innovation Council. We catch up with J.M.Noronha to understand more about CIBA – progress so far, startup activity in Goa and challenges in running CIBA,if any. Read on! 

J.M.Noronha.
Mr .J.M.Noronha. CEO -CIBA

When is CIBA Launched, and how has been the progress so far?

Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration launched on 4th April 2012 and has made rapid strides in supporting innovative start-up companies in Goa. The companies based at the Centre have won five international awards over the period of time.

Tell us your broad categories of Interest, and about the support provided at CIBA. Does the incubation come with funding? Also, are the entrepreneurs expected to pay for the 12-month incubation period?

Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration supports innovative start-ups in the areas of ITES, Food Processing, Clean Technologies and mixed technologies. Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration also provides seed funding for the incubatees and has strong linkages with funding agencies. The entrepreneurs are expected to pay a nominal rent over the incubation period which is also flexible based on the need.

 How do you see the startup activity in Goa?

Goa has the potentiality of growing into the international hub for innovation. The place naturally draws people to it and looking at the support for innovators and start-ups available through Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration and other government initiatives it should be an offer which nobody can resist. We have already experienced profile from various parts of the country setting up base at CIBA. It will be an encouraging sign for local innovative startups to be drawn to this attractive place of techno-entrepreneurship.

How many startups are being incubated currently, and under what domains?

Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration has supported 17 start-up companies till date in the field of ITES, Food Processing and Clean Technologies and 5 companies have graduated from the incubation centre. CIBA is also establishing a branch in Noth Goa at Assagao which can house 10 separate companies at a time. The new centre will be launched in May 2014 and will be close to the happening place in Goa.

How does CIBA plan to promote Entrepreneurship in Goa, apart from the Incubation Centre?

Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration has experience of supporting micro enterprise development for the last 14 years through the Agnel Entrepreneurship Development Institute. CIBA has supported more than 3000 micro enterprises to be established in Goa over this period. These big numbers could be possible because of the strong linkages establish with government and other agencies. Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration has also been provided office space in state industries department, state financial institutions and other departments and agencies. Targeting students, particularly school students is a task taken up by CIBA recently. CIBA has also set up a student’s lab to promote interest for incubation amongst the school children who will become innovators of tomorrow.

Take us through the Challenges in running CIBA? With mentors mainly residing in Metros – how do you ensure startups get the required mentoring support?

It has been a fairy tale for Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration till now. The spaces are fully occupied by start-up local and external experts are offering mentorship support to the young start-ups. CIBA also draws mentorship support through CIIE and other incubators. The location and strong linkages covers up for the challenges faced by the incubators as many established mentors spend a long period of their time for holidaying in Goa.

What is coming up next@CIBA? 

CIBA has a series of programmes lined up for start-ups, college students and school children.
We will have second edition of Innovative Business Idea competition called Kaun Banega Udyogpati. We are also hosting Accelerator Programmes in association with CIIE IIM-A this year. Lean Startup community has been formed and is actively functioning. We will also observe Goa State Innovation and Entrepreneurship Week in association with Government of Goa. Monthly Talks, Hack for Cause are some of the other activities in the planning phase.

If you are interested in the areas CIBA operates in, please check out the incubation process here.