Since 2011, Upaya Social Ventures has invested in 12 companies that have created over 4,000 jobs for the poorest of the poor. Now, Upaya announces the launch of an accelerator program for social enterprises focused on creating jobs for the poorest communities in India.

With their first program, Upaya is interested in supporting ventures that are creating formal sector job opportunities for the informal sector workforce.

What entrepreneurs get from the program:
• Participants who successfully complete the program will be eligible for investment from Upaya and other investors.
• Each entrepreneur will be assigned a mentor who will coach the company over a 6-month timeframe.
• Participants will take part in three week-long workshops that give them an opportunity to interact with industry experts on topics such as market strategy, financial planning, unit economics, governance, and presentation skills.

Entrepreneurs will graduate from the program armed with a refined business plan, pitch deck, and a roadmap to further build out their businesses.

The deadline to apply is 15 February for a program that will run from April – September 2017.

Entrepreneurs that are best suited for Upaya’s first program theme will have the following:
• A services-based business model that provides job placement, organized sector benefits and skilling opportunities to manpower sourced from the poorest of the poor communities
• For-profit, early-stage ventures that have already started generating revenue
• Limited (less than INR 50 lakhs) or no institutional funding received
• A strong commitment to creating jobs for the poorest communities in India, now and in the future

Eligible entrepreneurs may learn more and apply here.