What is a startup?
A startup is a newly established business, usually small, started by 1 or a group of individuals. What differentiates it from other new businesses is that a startup offers a new product or service that is not being given elsewhere in the same way. The keyword is innovation. The business either develops a new product/ service or redevelops a current product/service into something better.
What is Startup India?
Startups are becoming very popular in India. In order to develop Indian economy and attract talented entrepreneurs, the Government of India, under the leadership of PM Narendra Modi, has started and promoted Startup India initiative to recognize and promote startups.
How to register your startup with Startup India
Step 1: Incorporate your business
You have to follow all the normal procedures for registration of any business like obtaining the certificate of Incorporation/Partnership registration, PAN, and other required compliances.
Step 2: Register with Startup India
Then the business must be registered as a startup. The entire process is simple and online. All you need to do is log on to the Startup India website and fill up the form with details of your business and upload certain documents.
Step 3: Documents to be uploaded (in PDF format only)
a) A letter of recommendation/support
A letter of recommendation must be submitted along with the registration form. Any of the following will be valid-
(i) A recommendation (regarding innovative nature of business) from an Incubator established in a post-graduate college in India , in a format specified by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP); OR
(ii) A letter of support by an incubator, which is funded (in relation to the project) by Government of India as part of any specified scheme to promote innovation; OR
(iii) A letter of recommendation (regarding innovative nature of business), from an Incubator, recognized by the Government of India in DIPP specified format; OR
(iv) A letter of funding of not less than 20% in equity, by any Incubation Fund/Angel Fund/Private Equity Fund/Accelerator/Angel Network, duly registered with SEBI that endorses innovative nature of the business; OR
(v) A letter of funding by Government of India or any State Government as part of any specified scheme to promote innovation; OR
(vi) A patent filed and published in the Journal by the Indian Patent Office in areas affiliated with the nature of the business being promoted.
b) Incorporation/Registration Certificate
You need to upload the certificate of incorporation of your company/LLP (Registration Certificate in case of partnership)
c) Description of your business in brief
A brief description of the innovative nature of your products/services.
Step 4: Answer whether you would like to avail tax benefits
Startups are exempted from income tax for 3 years. But to avail these benefits, they must be certified by the Inter-Ministerial Board (IMB). Start-ups recognized by DIPP, Govt. of India can now directly avail IPR related benefits without requiring any additional certification from IMB.
Step 5: Finally, you must self-certify that you satisfy the following conditions
a) You must register your new company as a Private Limited Company, Partnership firm or a Limited Liability Partnership
b) Your business must be incorporated/registered in India, not before 5 years.
c) Turnover must be less than 25 crores per year.
d) Innovation is a must– the business must be working towards innovating something new or significantly improving the existing used technology.
e) Your business must not be as a result of splitting up or reconstruction of an existing business.
Step 6: Immediately get recognition number
That’s it! On applying you will immediately get a recognition number for your startup. The certificate of recognition will be issued after the examination of all your documents.
However, be careful while uploading the documents. If on subsequent verification, it is found to be obtained that the required document is not uploaded/wrong document uploaded or a forged document has been uploaded then you shall be liable to a fine of 50% of your paid-up capital of the startup with a minimum fine of Rs. 25,000.
Step 7: Other areas
a) Patents, trademarks and/or design registration
If you need a patent for your innovation or a trademark for your business, you can easily approach any from the list of facilitators issued by the government. You will need to bear only the statutory fees thus getting an 80% reduction in fees.
One of the key challenges faced by many startups has been accessing to finance. Due to lack of experience, security or existing cash flows, entrepreneurs fail to attract investors. Besides, the high-risk nature of startups, as a significant percentage fail to take-off, puts off many investors.
In order to provide funding support, Government has set up a fund with an initial corpus of INR 2,500 crore and a total corpus of INR 10,000 crore over a period 4 years (i.e. INR 2,500 crore per year). The Fund is in the nature of Fund of Funds, which means that it will not invest directly into Startups, but shall participate in the capital of SEBI registered Venture Funds.
Key features of the Fund of Funds
- The Fund of Funds shall be managed by a Board with professionals from industry bodies, academia, and successful Startups.
- Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) shall be a co-investor in the Fund of Funds
- The Fund of Funds shall contribute to a maximum of 50% of the SEBI registered Venture Funds (“daughter funds”). In order to be able to receive the contribution, the daughter fund should have already raised the balance 50%. The Fund of Funds shall have representatives on the board of the venture fund based on the contribution made.
- The Fund shall ensure support to a broad mix of sectors such as manufacturing, agriculture, health, education, etc.
It’s very easy to register as a startup thanks to the various government initiatives. However, you can focus on your key area while we at ClearTax help you from the start to finish right from incorporating your company to getting your startup recognition. Do visit our website to know more about startup services