Hyderabad, October 23: As many as 89 startups have been selected for the second cohort of the 'Her&Now' programme by WE Hub, which is India's first state-led incubator to foster and promote women entrepreneurship. The selected startups that have been shortlisted out of 600 applications  include Envi Robotics, Nuture Fields, Ladoo Box, Venica Herbals, ASARA Products, Verma Foods, Lesperanzau and SR Silks. According to a report by IANS, the pitching process had close to 150 women entrepreneurs out of 600 applicants, and each pitch was evaluated across 14 selection criteria like domain knowledge, digital literacy, potential to scale, impact, innovation, business feasibility etc., with external jury members in the panel, WE Hub said.

The acceleration programme is a six-month programme to help formally registered, women-led, for-profit enterprises from tier2 and 3 cities of Telangana to scale up. Reports inform that each entrepreneur was allowed for pitching followed by a 10-minute Q&A session. The programme will have an incubation program for seven months to help women entrepreneurs who have been running an informal enterprise or are a part of a group enterprise and now want to start up on their own and establish their enterprises.

About the Project:

  1. Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH is implementing the project 'Economic Empowerment of Women Entrepreneurs and Start-ups by Women (Her&Now)' on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
  2. The programme is in partnership with the Indian Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MoSDE).
  3. It aims to support aspiring and existing women entrepreneurs in India.
  4. For over 60 years, GIZ GmbH has been working with partners in India for sustainable economic, ecological, and social development.


The first cohort of 30 start-ups from Telangana graduated in August by formally registering their enterprises and raising finances through credit linkages and equity investments. "We are happy to witness an escalated participation of women entrepreneurs from 28 to 89 into our innovation ecosystem. With WE Hub, we look forward to foster and supporting many more entrepreneurs in the future," said Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary (ITE &C), Government of Telangana.

Deepthi Ravula, CEO, WE Hub, was quoted in reports saying that the journey from a minimal viable product or solution to a successful start-up is a not an easy one. “We are deeply committed to supporting the women entrepreneurs as they prepare to launch and grow their ventures. Our partnership with GIZ enables us to invest in entrepreneurship in tier 2 and tier 3 cities where innovation is booming. We are looking forward to helping these select enterprises thrive," she said.

Julia Karst, Head of Project Her&Now at GIZ, after a successful round of programmes with the first cohort of women entrepreneurs from Telangana, we are looking forward to welcoming 89 women entrepreneurs into the second round of our incubation and acceleration programme. Her&Now through WE Hub offers support customized to each entrepreneur and her business, and we hope this will prove especially useful in these challenging times of the pandemic," she said.