Young entrepreneurs, with their innovative products, hold the key

‘Graveyard of Industries’ — the tag bestowed on Kozhikode by some disappointed industrialists may change soon. In the past 12 months, there has been a boom in the number of small-scale ventures undertaken by young entrepreneurs. Around 1,200 provisional registrations were made in the district for innovative small-scale ventures, of which 60 per cent has become operational.

More food processing industries, which demand little investment but give satisfactory returns, are being set up.

The carrot

The main attraction for newcomers in agro-based industries is the 20 per cent contribution by the government to the investment.

“In the past three years, 2,874 new entrepreneurs launched small-scale industrial ventures. Their total investment comes to Rs.247 crore,” says M.P. Abdul Rasheed, Manager of the District Industries Centre. These ventures provide jobs to over18,000 individuals in Kozhikode district.

Fresh proposals are being presented to the Industries Department for consideration. Within the three-year term, 4,901 applications were received at the District Industries Centre (DIC) for approval. The projected investment for these ventures comes to Rs.350 crore as per DIC records.

Both the city and rural areas are part of the small industries’ boom. DIC officials attribute the trend to the State government’s regular Entrepreneurship Development Programmes (EDP) and Technology Clinics. In Kozhikode district alone, eight EDPs were held in 12 months. This was in addition to the grama panchayat-level Technology Clinics, which deal with local concerns and help young industrialists explore opportunities.

Exhibits

DIC officials say entrepreneurs with innovative projects have plenty to gain from the field without much investment. “In the city, we have approved three fresh projects — a panel board manufacturing unit, an ice cream plant, and an artificial ornament-making unit — all proposed by young entrepreneurs,” an official says. The DIC also arranges meetings for entrepreneurs with prominent manufacturers of small-scale industrial accessories. The goal is to make them aware of mechanised production process and thus increase productivity with minimum operational cost. Expo-2014, an exhibition on the latest in machinery, which is now underway at the Jubilee Hall in Kozhikode, is one such venture, the official says. Over 30 manufacturers are participating in the exhibition.

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