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The global tourist hub, Goa, is popular amongst Indians as well as foreigners for its pristine beaches, colonial heritage and high quality of life. So, what makes it a favourite haunt for startups and innovators? Well, all of the above and more.

Over the years, Goa has scripted several successful startup stories; from the world-famous Armada Spiced Liqueur to SaaS-powered mobile training platform, HandyTrain to affordable Agri-products startup, Letcetra Agritech, and many more.

Let’s find out what is driving hordes of startups to set shop in the party capital of India?

Splendid infrastructure: When compared to metros and Tier-A cities, which are overpopulated and overburdened as far as civic amenities go, Goa boasts of a robust physical infrastructure; good roads, efficient power supply, affordable accommodation, and easy connectivity to several major cities. Moreover, thanks to its low population count, there are no skirmishes over space and facilities. Public transport, which has been a bit of a problem for some time, is now being dealt with actively by the State government

Growing Startup Ecosystem: Only a few States have shown as much commitment to national movements such as Digital India and Startup India as Goa has done. For a tiny State, Goa hosts several incubators, co-working spaces, mentorship support and seed funding opportunities. The Goa chapter of the State Innovation Council is one of the most active in the country, organizing several Startup Bootcamps and entrepreneurial workshops, each year. Technology, innovation and entrepreneurship are taught at several schools and ground-level support to young innovators is zealously provided.

High-Calibre Workforce: Goa is home to some of the top technology and engineering institutions including NIT, BITS Pilani and Goa College of Engineering that produce a highly-skilled and well-trained workforce ready to power startups. Goan students are well conversed in English, a language used globally for business. In the absence of MNCs and large technology companies, startups find little competition when it comes to recruiting the best talent at an affordable cost.

Ready Test Marketplace: Goa’s per capita income is highest in India with a population that is opening to consumerism, leaving a lot of scope for new products and services with a level playing field. Startups find a good test market in Goa, which is essential in their scaling-up journey.

Stress-free Living: Goa has much to offer when it comes to relaxed, stress-free living, which, in turn, allows higher work productivity and better work relations. Shorter distances, ambient living, friendly people and natural bliss, Goa has it all. The Sunshine State also offers great destinations for enjoying global cuisine, beach-side shacks for rejuvenation and a myriad of opportunities to indulge in its rich cultural and natural heritage.

FiiRE (Forum for Innovation Incubation Research and Entrepreneurship) has been established with the support of Department of Science & Technology, Government of India, under the National Initiative for Developing and Harnessing Innovations. It has been curating incubation processes to help startups visualize and build prototypes. FiiRE is housed at the Don Bosco Engineering College in Fatorda, Goa.