DWIH Incubators Connect 2.0: A journey full of insights and inspiration

Daniela Musial-Lemberg

From 26 February to 1 March 2024, we were part of an intensive exploration tour of the Indian startup ecosystem and India’s fascinating culture as part of our EXIST-funded internationalisation offer GHPro. Meetings with representatives from federal organisations such as Startup India, Atal Innovation Mission Official and the Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) provided us with an excellent overview of India’s mission in the startup space. With over 100,000 startups and more than 100 unicorns, the goal is clear: India is well on its way to further expanding its startup ecosystem, which is already the third largest in the world.


Our trip first took us to New Delhi, where we gained exciting insights into the promotion of science-based start-ups in Germany and India. Visits to incubators such as the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi (IIT) and the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Platforms (C-CAMP) showed the high potential in India. People like Ashutosh Pastor are driving this success.

In Bangalore, we deepened our knowledge of the challenges facing the Indian population, such as health, clean water and air. The exchange with the Kerala Startup Mission and iStart Rajasthan was particularly impressive. It shows how much is being invested to overcome these challenges. The meetings with founders and startups, such as AAARNA Therapeutics or Green Aero Propulsion, were inspiring. Their dedication and the potential of their solutions to global problems emphasised the importance of stronger networking between German and Indian start-ups. In addition to the professional insights, the trip also offered the opportunity to learn more about Indian culture and cuisine. Although it was only a brief insight, I am eager to learn more and return soon.


A special thanks to the DWIH New Delhi team – Katja Lasch, Aadishree Jamkhedkar and Ramneet Mehta – for the incredible opportunity to be part of this delegation. The meetings with the German representatives, such as the Consulate General in Bangalore, were also very enriching. I would also like to thank the EXIST-Potentials programme and in particular Ms Maiia Deutschmann, who was also part of the delegation.


Conclusion: These 10 days were an extraordinary journey full of learning moments, new connections and deep insights into the vibrant startup ecosystem of India. The insights and experiences we gained are priceless and I look forward to incorporating them into future projects and collaborations. India, see you again!

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