Past Programs

Villgro has worked with corporates, public institutions and the Govt. of India to run go-to-market and commercialisation accelerator programs

IPPF YSVF Innovation Challenge for Family Planning and Maternal Health

Sector: Healthcare


FPA India has launched the IPPF YSVF Innovation Challenge, with technical support from Villgro. This program is a global pilot of 'Youth Social Venture Fund', a business initiative of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) to discover and mentor startups and youth innovators developing tech-driven innovations (hardware or software-based) that address youth sexual and reproductive health issues.

Focus Areas 


  • Increasing young persons’ access to contraceptive information, services and supplies
  • Enhancing correct and consistent use of short-acting reversible contraceptives among young users

Maternal health

  • Empower young women to track and improve their health during pregnancy ·
  • Enable young women to track and improve their nutritional status during pregnancy

Incentives for startups/young innovators

The global challenge provides a cohort of 10 selected innovators with month-long immersion support and access to experts, learning labs focused on maternal health and contraception-related issues. 

The top 3 shortlisted innovators receive the following benefits: 

Grant USD 10000 (per innovator) through IPPF
Incubation & mentoring support
Connect with industry experts
Dedicated 1-1 mentorship support
Access to learning labs and webinars

Program Timelines


22 October - 22 November 2021

Call for Applications


10 December - 10 January 2022

Virtual Immersion Program


17 January - 21 January 2022

Virtual pitches and grant awards announced to the three best pitches


22 February - 22 November 2022

Incubation program | Demo day for Program Partners

Program Partners

Enabling COVID Resilience – An Accelerator program by Villgro & GIZ

Sector: Healthcare, Agriculture


Villgro has partnered with GIZ to scout and support 10 startups creating innovations in agriculture and healthcare that address challenges arising out of COVID-19 pandemic.

Incentives for startups

The startups will be supported through a 10-week acceleration program by Villgro primarily aimed at:

Develop problem statements focused on enabling COVID resilience in healthcare and agriculture
Capacity building & mentoring support
Gain access to Villgro’s network of startups
Access to International Investors & Corporates

Program Timelines


15 October - 30 October

Startup Selection and Assessment


1 November - 15 December

Virtual Immersion Program


16 December - 23 December

Demo Day


24 December

International Connects - Investors & Corporates

Program Partner

Healthcare Accelerator Program supported by UBS Optimus Foundation

Sectors: Healthcare


UBS-Optimus Foundation & Villgro have partnered to launch an accelerator program in the healthcare sector to drive better outcomes among underserved communities in India. The program intends to support market ready, revenue stage, for-profit social enterprises and provide them with access to corporate partnerships; strong business advisory and a 100 day acceleration plan with a view to develop the healthcare ecosystem.

Focus Areas/ Problem Statements 

Scalable models that increase access to & quality of health services across the continuum of care – from community, to clinics, to hospitals & thus improve quality of healthcare systems through three entry points: 

Frontline Healthcare

  • Improve primary care access by building scalable community health worker (CHW) system
  • Capacity development of local health systems, paramedics and CHWs. Increase in number of CHWs trained and deployed
  • Tech. interventions for improving linkages to health facilities and improving supervisory support for CHWs
  • Increase and improve effectiveness of CHWs and different digital tools. Strengthen digitally-empowered CHWs
  • Facility-based interventions for improving healthcare, increase in primary health centers with improved standard of care & improved range of services

Safe Surgery

  • Increase no. of surgical, anesthetic and obstetric specialists
  • Tech. enabled early diagnosis of health issues by connecting surgeons to CHWs (tele-mentoring platform for CHWs)
  • Improve access to affordable surgical tools and technologies
  • Simplify protocols to reduce the mortality rate and improve surgery outcomes
  • Skill development of surgical workforce, developing and delivering competency-based training curricula & job aids
  • Improve access to safe C-sections for pregnant women. Improve access to a facility that can perform caesarean delivery, laparotomy and similar procedures quickly

Pediatric Cancer

  • Improve diagnosis of childhood cancers, improve access to low cost diagnostic equipment and services like imaging facilities
  • Increase access to treatment, strengthen specialized nursing skills and key sub-specialties (pathology, pediatric surgery)
  • Increase survival rates of cancer patients and reduce abandonment of treatment
  • Increase no. of pediatric oncologists, pathologists, primary care providers trained to recognize cancer warning signs
  • Improve access to non-medical supportive care, like nutrition, transport, hospitality, financial aid, ancillary medical care, immune system strengthening medications, blood supplies etc.

Incentives for startups

Partnerships with corporates, hospitals and others for pilot opportunities and business support
Technical Assistance for business growth
Access to learning labs for understanding key business concepts
Investment readiness support; Pitch deck preparation
Support in outreach to funders and investors with an aim of securing funding for development plans

Who should apply

  • For-profit, market-ready, revenue stage enterprises
  • Enterprises with Technology Readiness Level 6 (TRL 6) & above
  • Ability to demonstrate success in handling corporate partnerships
  • Enterprises that can measure and demonstrate social returns
  • Enterprises working on market-based models in low-income settings
  • Enterprises enabling innovations around focus areas
  • Enterprises based outside with a solution that is applicable for the Indian population

Program timeline:

  • Call for applications: 15 March ’21 – 15 Apr ’21
  • Application screening and pitch presentations: 15 Apr ’21 – 25 Apr ’21
  • 100 days of core acceleration: 25 May ’21 – 5 Aug ’21
  • Investment Evaluation & Graduation: 5 Aug ’21 – 15 Aug ’21

Ecosystem Partners

Media Partner

I4ID – Innovate to fight Infectious Diseases

Sectors: Healthcare


India Health Fund and Villgro launched the platform I4ID (Innovate for the fight against Infectious Diseases) to support startups developing affordable, point-of-care health technologies to prevent, control and eliminate infectious diseases and supplement India's efforts to prevent future pandemics.

Incentives for startups

Engagement with public/private stakeholders
Opportunities to present to govt, private sector entities
Funding support
Mentoring support
Access to resources for accelerated market adoption

FPAI- Villgro Innovation Challenge

Sectors: Healthcare


Villgro and The Family Planning Association of India (FPAI) partnered to launch an innovation challenge to discover innovative technical solutions in the Sexual, Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) space. The “Innovation Challenge” will identify startups or individuals with innovative solutions across five problem areas in the SRHR space and provide a cohort of 15 selected innovators with a month long immersion support. The best solutions will receive a cash award of upto INR 3.5 lakhs and get the opportunity to showcase their solutions to a global audience.

The identified problem areas include:

  • Technology-driven providing multilingual comprehensive sex education to youth
  • Affordable, easy to use solutions for early diagnosis of pregnancy
  • Low cost, eco-friendly, easy to use solutions for dispensing and disposing of sanitary napkins
  • Easy and non-invasive diagnosis of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) among young girls
  • Affordable and multiparameter, ovulation monitoring and management solutions

Program timeline:

  • Call for applications: 9th Oct to 30th Oct, ’20.
  • Immersion program: 5th Nov to 15th Nov, ’20.
  • Rapid prototyping and virtual pitches: 16th Nov to 28th Nov, ’20.
  • Virtual Pitches and Presentation of final cash award: 29th Nov to 3rd Dec, ’20.

Immersion Program

Apart from dedicated mentorship from healthcare professionals & youth volunteers of FPAI, shortlisted innovators were connected with relevant incubators and received rapid prototyping support for building a pilot Proof of Concept (POC).


INVENT (Innovative Ventures and Technologies for Development)

Sectors: Agriculture, Healthcare, Energy & Cleantech, Education, Livelihoods

The Innovative Ventures and Technologies for Development (INVENT) program was conceived in 2016 by Technology Development Board (TDB), and the Government of India in partnership with the Department for International Development (DFID), UK.

Villgro played the role of the Lead Incubator and supported four incubators with the goal of incubating hundreds of innovative social enterprises in 8 low-income States (LIS) – Bihar, Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh & West Bengal; thereby catalyzing social entrepreneurship in underdeveloped markets.

In three years, INVENT has incubated 161 startups. 72 startups have gone on to raise follow on funding of INR 1407 million. Follow on funding partners include both government and non-government bodies like Intellecap, Omnivore, IAN Fund, AgFunder, Zomato, Social Alpha (TATA Trust), Info Edge, Ankur Capital, Gray Matters Capital, Yes Bank, HDFC, Vijaya, SBI, Angel Investors etc.

Creating Impact at Scale

The INVENT Program offers Social Enterprises:

Seed funding
Capacity building and Knowledge sharing
Dedicated Mentorship
Credible Networks
Downstream Investment
Support Services

Partner Incubators

SIDBI Innovation & Incubation Centre (SIIC), IIT Kanpur

Focus StatesUttar Pradesh | Chhattisgarh

Apply at

IIM Calcutta Innovation Park (IIMCIP)

Focus StatesWest Bengal | Bihar

Apply at

Startup Oasis

Focus StatesRajasthan | Madhya Pradesh

Apply at


Focus StatesOdisha, Jharkhand

Apply at