Hyderabad-based startup incubator T-Hub has announced the appointment of Ravi Narayan, former global director at Microsoft for Startups, as its chief executive from January, a company statement said.
T-Hub is a public-private partnership of the Telangana government, three academic institutions — IIIT Hyderabad, ISB and Nalsar — and companies.
In a career spanning over two decades, Narayan has been a product engineer, entrepreneur, investor, mentor and leader. He has co-founded three companies, and led them to their acquisitions.
Besides advising the government of Karnataka, Narayan has advised national governments such as those of Singapore and Malaysia. In Bengaluru, he has chaired TiE Entrepreneurial Summit, Nasscom Product Conclave and PAN IIT Conclave.
As the global director of Microsoft for Startups, Narayan has helped establish accelerators and Microsoft go-to-market programmes with startups across the world. He also worked with a portfolio of Temasek funds in Singapore to help them with digital transformation by collaborating with global startups. Temasek is Singapore state investor.
In February 2018, TechCircle had reported that Microsoft is launching a programme named Microsoft for Startups. "Microsoft is committing $500 million over the next two years to offer joint sales engagements with startups, along with access to our technology, and new community spaces that promote collaboration across local and global ecosystems," the company said in the report then.
Mentor Partners, a venture capital fund specialising in mentoring startups, that Narayan co-founded, invested in product startups in India targeting the global market.
An engineer from IIT (Indian Institute of Technology) Madras, Narayan holds master of science and MBA degrees from the University of Southern California.
Ramanathan Ramesh, mission director at Atal Innovation Mission, NITI Aayog, said, “India is leading the world in the growth of its startup ecosystem at a heretofore globally unprecedented way. As we enter a new era of Make in India, with our startups building products for the rest of the world, we are realising the fruit of the groundwork laid by folks who were there since the beginning of this revolution.” Ramesh added, “Narayan has been one such startup champion and his appointment as chief executive of T-Hub is a great indicator of the Telangana government’s commitment to entrepreneurship and innovation in India, and a mark of better times to come.”
The Atal Innovation Mission is the central government’s endeavour to promote a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship. It has two core functions. One, entrepreneurship promotion through self-employment and talent use, wherein innovators would be supported and mentored to become successful entrepreneurs. Two, innovation promotion: To provide a platform where innovative ideas are generated.