In one of my earlier post I had mentioned about the classic example of grass root innovation by Manoj Sinha who was featured on NYT for his unique contribution of coming up with Husk power system for transforming rural power generation. Husk Power Systems won first place in 2008 in the University of Virginia business plan competition and the social innovation competition at the University of Texas, Austin.
This model has been now won global recognition by beating more than 1,000 competitors from world over to bag the inaugural Global Business Plan Competition award.The award was sponsored by leading American venture capital firms Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Cisco. India’s Husk Power System would receive $250,000 (nearly Rs 1.20 crore) as investment from Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Cisco to help take the technology to the next level; thus giving it an opportunity to expand to other parts of the state.
“Deciding on just one winner was difficult, especially with this caliber of candidates. We are excited to have chosen Husk Power Systems, which is especially remarkable for its alternative power technology, and we can’t wait to see how this team becomes the next game changer,” Draper Fisher Jurvetson MD Tim Draper said.
“Given Cisco’s focus on emerging countries and the use of innovative technology to provide enhanced essential services, Cisco’s investment in Husk Power Systems is a great way for us to accelerate these themes,” added Hilton Romanski, Vice-President of corporate development for Cisco.
The company, which the two venture capitals believe has the potential to change the face of rural areas, especially in the rice belt of Northern India, by converting rice husk into energy, was founded in 2007 by two University of Virginia, Darden School of Business 2009 graduates Chip Ransler and Manoj Sinha.