Indian television is soon going to see two new reality shows focused on Indian startups. While, one will be aired on state-run channel, Doordarshan, the other will be seen on youth centric channel MTV.
Government’s stand gets more ‘real’
In tandem with the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government’s Startup India Action Plan, the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) has finally waved the green flag for a government-run reality show that aims to bring together investors and entrepreneurs from around the country. Sounds like Indianized Shark Tank? Oh yes!
As startup founders pitch their idea and showcase a plethora of exciting products and services to seek investments, you will be able to view it live from the comfort of your couches. The show will enable the government to promote and nurture the startup culture in the country, which stands to be the third largest in the world.
The program will be broadcast on Doordarshan, a private general entertainment channel, radio and digital mediums. It’s further revealed that the interested startups will have to undergo one round of “screening” followed by two rounds of “evaluation” to appear on the show. But for something as extravagant as a reality show, arranging capital can be a strenuous affair.
Indian Express reports that NASSCOM has told the government the show would require a budget of INR 640 million ($9.7 million approx) . While INR 340 million ($5.2 million) may be raised from states and sponsors, the DIPP would have to shell out at least INR 300 million ($4.5 million) from its own pocket. DIPP secretary Ramesh Abhishek has already given his in-principle approval recently.
Raghu-Rajiv combo is back!
Who can forget the famous, or should I say ‘infamous’ youth-driven show on MTV- Roadies? The co-anchors of the show, Raghu Ram and Rajiv Lakshman are soon going to be back on the channel with another reality show on startups called “Dropout“. Aiming at empowering the truants of the country to achieve their startup dreams, the show will involve its viewers to identify and transform aspiring individuals into a striving startup team, along with mentorship from India’s leading entrepreneurs.
This is however not the first TV reality show in India that focuses on startups. Last year, a TV series called The Vault came into being that gives promising entrepreneurs an opportunity to pitch their ideas to a panel of investors and possibly get funded on the spot, while the nation watches them in their moment of glory. It also provides expert advice from industry veterans, incubation programs and mentorship opportunities, that helps create a conducive ecosystem for the same.
So far, this year has been full of merger & acquisitions, well-established startups shutting shops or laying off employees, fresh fundings, new pitches, and some exits. No one knows where the startup bubble is heading, whether it is here to stay or is it just awaiting a massive collapse. But involving those in the receiving end – the viewers – who are also the consumers, to participate in the building of the startup ecosystem can be a double bonanza. It will float a better understanding of the startup ecosystem among the public at large, and startups might also find a way to better understand the needs of the society.