We had a good start this year when we won the Global Cleantech Innovation Award for developing a technology to make 100% biodegradable and compostable sanitary pads from waste banana tree fibre.
After being recognized as the GCIP national winner in Mumbai, we were really excited for the international competition held in the City of Angels- Los Angeles on 26th Jan-2nd Feb 2018. It was not just a competition, but an opportunity to meet new people and startups from around the world, GCIP gave us great insight and collaboration opportunities. The international competition was tough and every finalist with their amazing disruptive technology was deserving and having great impact in their areas and countries.
“Each participant was a winner in their own fields and it seemed to be tough to emerge as a winner, we were proud to represent India when Saathi was announced as the Global Award winner. GCIP experience was roller coaster ride for us from the enthusiasm for reaching LA to the anxiousness of preparing the pitch to the exhilaration of receiving the Global Award at the Cleantech Open.” - says Tarun Bothra, CTO & Co-Founder of Saathi.
“At the event we were really excited to learn about the amazing incubator, Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI- The world's largest startup accelerator for clean and renewable technology, based in Los Angeles). We were able to interact with some really interesting companies at LACI which we can also collaborate with in the future.” - Kristin Kagetsu, CEO & Co-Founder Saathi.
We are thankful for the coaching, business training and contacts provided by GCIP, UNIDO and GEF. The dedication and passion by the mentors for refining each individual to be a winner was remarkable. There were some interesting moments with the panel & problem solving sessions arranged exclusively for the finalists. We were trained to be confident in all aspects of the pitch no matter whether it's for 1,2,3---10 mins.
What is GCIP
Global Cleantech Innovation Programme (GCIP) is a joint initiative of Global Environment Facility (GEF) and United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), and is conducted in partnership with Cleantech Open, an international event. Each startup involved receives training, mentoring, and promotion, and is put in contact with potential investors, customers and partners through participation in the programme.
Congratulations to the Category winners
The GEF-funded GCIP aims to foster and strengthen clean technology and entrepreneurship by providing the expertise and contacts necessary for cleantech entrepreneurs in eight countries so far. Every year, winners of the startup competition that runs in each country (India, Turkey, Morocco, Thailand, Malaysia, Ukraine, Pakistan, South Africa) come to California to compete in the finals that designate a GCIP global winner and runner up. This year we were one of the 10 finalists out of 19 women-led GCIP startups present at the event.
NavAlt Solar & Electric Boats from Cochin that runs India’s first solar-power ferry in Kerala won the Global Category Award for Renewable Energy.
Aspartika Biotech from Bengaluru won the Global Category Award for Waste Beneficiation for using discarded silkworm pupa to produce Omega-3 fatty acids for enriching poultry feed.
The Global Runner-Up Award went to TOM-CASAVA of Thailand for making activated carbon products from cassava stump that reduce CO2 emission.
Delphisonic and Biolive from Turkey, and GROW from Thailand were the other category winners.
From the La-La land diary
LA being one of the hubs of cleantech is really an inspiration. There has been a drastic change in the city as they cleaned up the pollution and adopted sustainable living, recycling and compostability in their daily routines. One of the best experiences was with LA port facility which is completely automatic and running on electronics and smart equipment with no usage of diesel and other polluting gases.
We have previously won multiple awards recognizing our contribution to Social and Environmental issues, including the Hello Tomorrow Global Challenge 2017,
Asia Social Innovation Award 2017, Circular Board Pitch for Purpose 2017, SXSW Accelerator Pitch Finalist in Healthcare 2017, among others we appreciate the support from our early advocates from MIT D-Lab’s Scale-up Fellows program, Harvard Business School New Venture Competition, Asia Society’s Asia 21 program and of course from our early customers.
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