Head – Startup & Innovations

Website Karnataka Digital Economy Mission

The Karnataka Digital Economy Mission promises to harness the unlimited potential of the digital economy of Karnataka and transform the lives of the people in the state. The IT ecosystem will uplift IT professionals in the industry and also power millions of other ancillary jobs across other industries. The coming decades promises growth and maturity of the IT and start up ecosystems in Bengaluru City and extended cities in Karnataka, It endeavors to raise its current Global ranking from being among the Top 30 Global Startup Ecosystems in the World.

Aspirational Goals :
 To create Digital Economy which funds 30% of the overall GDP
 Achieve USD 150 bn in IT exports
 Support Domestic and International Outreach & Partnership Development

KDEM leadership team will guide growth and investments in its five Verticals through support and mentoring received from The Advocacy Council. A strong directional partnership will enable the management to create and execute the vision and strategy plans with a well-defined implementation roadmaps.

KDEM will also facilitate execution of short-term and long-term projects. The focus is to achieve annual goals, increase investment flow and align existing activities within the overall KDEM Goals.

Vertical: Startup & Innovation: Karnataka is on the Top 5 Start Up ecosystem in the country and is recognized for its Innovations, in various sectors of the economy. Karnataka has created many recognized Unicorns

Position Summary

This role will be responsible for KDEM’s startup and innovation program, which aims to create and impact the start-up ecosystem in the state. A highly visible position with responsibility to carry the brand of KDEM at National & State level. It requires the incumbent to lead with zeal and passion & create growth track record across the State.

The position requires the incumbent to create and execute a strategy to grow Karnataka Start up ecosystem. Build partnerships with incubators, accelerators, VC’s, corporate sponsors, industry partners, media houses and local entrepreneurial networks to achieve Digital growth.

This position also includes to support :

  • Start-up Policy Facilitation
  • In developing Innovation framework through CoE, TBIs, NAINs and CIFs;
  • Industry connect & Enterprise connect programmes for Start-ups
  • To Design and Implement Digital research Hub.
  • To Provide implementation support for Karnataka Investment Authority (KIA)
  • ELEVATE companies through effective mentoring & acceleration programs

Manage deftly complex programs with continuous engagement with all the stakeholders.

 Aspirational Goals set up :

  • Startups’ contribution to about 5% of the State’s GDP
  • 25,000 Startups to employ about 10 lakh professionals
  • 150 VC investors with corpus of USD 100 billion
  • 40 Unicorns and 50 Soonicorns
  • Startup ecosystem Beyond Bengaluru

Role Responsibilities

  • Strategize, plan and manage the program activities for Startup & Innovation vertical.
  • Create and design road map for the next wave of technology for organizations.
  • Address the critical bottlenecks in the current industry and grow the Start Up Ecosystem
  • Focus on policy initiatives with various departments in the State and align the same with policies of the Centre.
  • Make partnerships with TiE, incubators, accelerators and startups. Also establish partnerships with angel investors, VC’s and suggest various programs for the startups.
  • Identify potential mentors to associate with the program and on-board them & provide them recognition
  • Be the Primary Contact to identify challenges and inhibitors for Growth, with respect to Start ups.
  • Raise funds for the program if required.
  • Achieve the aspiration goals set up for the vertical as listed above.
  • Identify potential Industry Anchors., to participate in designing and executing the strategy for Startup &Innovation.
  • Ensure the registration of all the Startups in Karnataka on Karnataka Startup PORTAL
  • Ensure the state ranking on the Start Up Ecosystem remains at top
  • Ensure adherence of all relevant compliance policies, regulations and framework.
  • Continuously gather data/insights from internal and external stakeholder on the industry and provide key analytics and insights to the relevant stakeholders
  • Cross leverage the network, internal /external resources and stakeholders to create value for the Startup community.
  • Build opportunities for startups in Tier 2 & Tier 3 cities in Karnataka through Virtual incubation program through Ecosystem Partners
  • Engage with various state level departments to support them in implementation of their startup/procurement policies.
  • Build relationships with technology research organizations/academic institutions to explore opportunity of collaboration with startup ecosystem
  • Build and manage investor community in the region to help with a reliable platform for startups.


  • Develop and execute strategy for setting up, attracting and onboarding passionate and qualified technology start-ups.
  • Partner with the Government of Karnataka, Steering Committee, investors and Foundations and stakeholders for the full success of Startup programs.
  • Create forum to listen understand challenges and requirements of startup
  • Provide single window link for startups to access relevant resources and connections for interactions with various stakeholders.
  • Create robust frameworks for Monitoring, Evaluation and Learnings of the startups & drive timely analysis of quantitative data and qualitative feedback to measure differential Impact of program
  • Provide integrated intelligence from results and customer feedback
  • Build and Maintain startup and incubator database to track progress and growth.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

Education & Experience Essential: Graduate

Desirable: MBA from premier institute.

Relevant experience 10-12 years of experience in startups / running community platforms

Experience Overall Total work experience of 18+ years
Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
  • Possess and demonstrate passion for the Startup &Innovation ecosystem.
  • Bring in prior experience of understanding the complexities in the ecosystem
  • Experience in Entrepreneurial ecosystem (either ex-entrepreneur or incubator manager or mentor/mentee)
  • Experience in incubator/accelerator (either as part of cohort or incubator manager, or sourcing managers) to better understand how they operate
  • Experience in handling Government Relations, stakeholder management of corporates & senior management and investors.
  • Have an understanding on Policy and Regulations in this ecosystem
    Aware of New Edge /Emerging technologies in play
  • Active in startup networking events and forums
  • Ability to raise funds
  • Background or exposure to marketing & community partnership
  • Strong network in India startup ecosystem with multiple stakeholders
  • Excellent communication and interaction skills; ability to build and grow relationships
  • Resourceful and ability to operate in a fast changing environment
  • Demonstrated ability to lead and work effectively in a team environment
  • Comfortable with multi-tasking and handling a variety of responsibilities.
  • Ability to take sound decision based on evidence.
  • Passion to succeed and go getter!
  • Demonstrated high standard of ethics and integrity.

To apply for this job email your details to info@karnatakadigital.in