Incubatee perspective on benefits of Incubation

Here is a shocking fact — 90% of startups fail within the first five years! There are several reasons for this failure, some of the major ones being lack of funding, inefficient networking, no access to important data, and lack of mentorship. This alarming statistic sheds light on the need for an incubator, especially for new entrepreneurs. 

An incubator can negate all the disadvantages and help deal with the major reasons for the failure of a startup, increasing your chances for success. In this article, we are going to hear it straight from the horse’s mouth.

Who is an Incubatee?

Incubatees are entrepreneurs who have registered themselves with an incubator or incubation company for guidance, mentorship, and assistance with their business ventures. The incubatee has been accepted by a business incubator organization and has access to several added advantages like office training, seed funding, clinical trials, and much more. 

The Increasing Need for Incubation & Its Rise in Popularity

Around the world and especially in India, incubation works as a catalyst to bring about economic development. Incubation acts as a bridge between the initiation and growth of a startup, to cross the gushing river of failed business ventures. We have already seen the alarming failure rate of 90%, and this shows the need for a business incubator.

 
In a time when startups are everywhere, and the economy is changing, more and more new entrepreneurs need expert help to wade through the roadblocks that one faces making any business a success. In the HealthTech space that is evolving through technological solutions, the need for incubation is much higher as in the coming few years, India’s health landscape is going to alter drastically. A HeathTech or MedTech entrepreneur must be prepared for this uncertainty.

How Does Incubation Help the Incubatee?

“Multiple incubators have given us various kinds of support. We have got access to government grants and investments for the IT initiatives of our business. We have also got clinical access to perform clinical validation, access to lab facilities to make our initial prototypes, and a chance to network and be a part of the hospital ecosystem among many other things,” says Mr Vinayak Nandalike, founder of Yostra.

Here are some of the significant ways through which incubation helps the incubatee:

Gaining Clinical Access and Mentoring from experts

“Incubation helped us design our study based on the clinical outcomes, along with predicting the market outcomes. For an entrepreneur to be confident, clinical validation is necessary. It is also vital to get regulatory approvals,” said Mr Nandalike, when we asked him about the importance of clinical access.

The products need to be tested in a real-life scenario and then modified. Clinical access opens a data mine for an incubatee, enabling them to create better products. Mentor provide the necessary inputs and guidance to help cross the valley of death.

Access to Hospital Ecosystem to Understand Market Needs

For the HealthTech and MedTech entrepreneurs, being a part of the hospital ecosystem, talking to clinicians, testing in labs is extremely essential to understand the market needs of their products and to interact with the end-users. 

 
Mr Vinayak says, “Because of incubation, we could tailor our products perfectly. We could study how our products would be used by the end-user and how it could be monetized.”
Availing Grants & Seed-Funding

Knowing what to say and what not, creating impactful presentations and proposals, understanding where to pitch or whom to network with are important to get the funding and grants you need. With incubation, this becomes a reality.

Expanded Networking

A business is never standalone. A MedTech entrepreneur, for example, needs to interact with clinicians, clients, media, investors, strategic partners,  suppliers, health professionals, end-users, etc. Incubation widens this scope of networking as the incubator has stronger, older relationships in the field.

Technical and Training Assitance

Creating a productive office space, learning how to use the right technology to propel growth are just some of the ways through which an incubator can help. 

 
The advantages of having a business incubator are multiple, the disadvantages, none.

What are the Roadblocks Faced by New Entrepreneurs?

“If we had an infinite amount of time and resources as entrepreneurs, we wouldn’t have to worry about the roadblocks. But we have a finite amount of time and resources,” says Mr Nandalike.

Here are the roadblocks an entrepreneur can steer clear of through incubation:

  • Knowing the right people, efficient networking
  • Customer acquisition
  • Understanding market needs
  • Lack of clinical data
  • No testing or lab facilities
  • Lack of capital
  • Untrained employees
  • No access to insights about end-users’ wants

Incubation is the Way to Go

“Any company, especially every MedTech company who is planning to sell a medical device in the Indian markets, needs incubation. You need to be guided by someone who has the experience,” advises Mr Vinayak.

Incubatees can plan, launch, manage and grow their businesses much better than non-incubatees as they have the necessary guidance, exclusive access for multiple avenues, and mentorship to steer them to survive, sustain and scale. Incubation powers the new India.

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