The Bangabandhu Innovation Grant (BIG) platform was launched in 2019 to honor the legacy of the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and inspire a new generation of entrepreneurs in Bangladesh. The platform provides grants, mentorship, and networking opportunities to startups and entrepreneurs across all sectors, promoting diversity and inclusivity. BIG is organized by the Innovation Design and Entrepreneurship Academy (iDEA) project of the Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC) of the ICT Division of the Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh in collaboration with other private and public sector stakeholders.
Usually, the winner receives BDT 1,00,00,000 as BIG Grant, and the other top startups receive BDT 10,00,000 as a grant from the iDEA Project with investment opportunities, mentoring and other facilities in this great initiative.
BIG aims to empower entrepreneurs and startups to dream big and take bold steps towards achieving their goals and creating a positive impact on society, in line with Bangabandhu's vision for a prosperous, innovative and smart Bangladesh.
BIG 2023 AT A GLANCE
The Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, is a source of inspiration for the country's youth, talented individuals, entrepreneurs, startups, and business leaders. His visionary leadership and unwavering commitment to the nation have left a lasting impact on the people of Bangladesh. To honor his legacy and inspire a new generation of entrepreneurs, the Bangabandhu Innovation Grant (BIG) platform was launched successfully in 2019.
BIG provides a unique opportunity for entrepreneurs and startups to showcase their innovative ideas and receive financial assistance to turn them into reality. Under the able leadership of the Daughter of the Bangabandhu, Honorable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, and with the advice of the Honorable adviser to the Prime minister of ICT Affairs Mr. Sajeeb Wazed, The BIG platform aims to provide a supportive ecosystem for startups by offering grant, mentorship, and networking opportunities. The grant is open to all startups, regardless of their sector, and encourages diversity and inclusivity. With the proper guidance of the Honorable State Minister for the ICT Division of Bangladesh Mr. Zunaid Ahmed Palak MP, The BIG platform has already funded several promising startups through the iDEA project and is set to continue supporting the next generation of innovators.
BIG is being organized by the Innovation Design and Entrepreneurship Academy (iDEA) project of the Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC) of the ICT Division of the Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh. For the first time, the 'Bangabandhu Innovation Grant (BIG)' was awarded on 16th October 2019 by the iDEA Project to the top 10 startups of another great initiative of the project "Student to Startup, Chapter-Two". This program is designed to support the next generation of entrepreneurs and assist them to turn their innovative ideas into successful startups.
BIG 2021 was successfully awarded for the 2nd time to the startups after the first award was given in 2019. In the "BIG 2021" contest, more than 7,000 startups applied from home and abroad at the initial stage, from which a total of 255 projects from 56 countries were accepted internationally. From there, the top 10 international startups are selected after two rounds of selection, and directly participate in the grand finale. On the other hand, startup selection at the national level was initially in two stages. In the first phase, 28 judges selected 286 local startups through 5 screening boards. 35 experienced judges, both public and private in 6 panels, selected the best 65 startups from these startups, who had the opportunity to participate in a 6-day online boot camp. After grooming at the boot camp, the 13-episode TV reality show started with these 65 startups. In this episode, the contestants faced the established business icons of the country who selected 26 startups out of 65 startups selected by the judges. A total of 46 startups were selected from the reality show, including 26 local startups, the top 10 international startups, and the top 10 portfolio startups of the iDEA project. Through 3 expert judging panels, the final selection process was made by focusing on various issues including startup concept, feasibility, business, technology, finance, the implementation plan of the startup, etc. At the end of the final selection of judges, the winner "OpenRefactory" was announced as the "One BIG Winner 2021" with a grant of 1 lac US dollars. Finally, the winners were handed over the crest, along with other winning startups of BIG 2021.
This year, BIG is going to be organized for the third time. The BIG 2023 will be an outstanding platform for startups this year also. It aims to provide funding and mentorship to promising startups across Bangladesh. The grant is available to all sectors, Like- healthcare, education, agriculture, finance, technology, and many more. The program will also provide entrepreneurs with access to a massive network of investors, mentors, and experts to assist them to scale their businesses. The BIG platform has announced its slogan for 2023 is "DARE TO STAND BIG". The slogan encapsulates the spirit of the platform, which aims to empower entrepreneurs and startups to dream big and take bold steps toward achieving their goals.
Any individuals with innovative, smart and scalable ideas by leveraging ICT will be able to share their pitch through this excellent initiative of the Government of Bangladesh. This year, The top 51 startups will be selected through the competition. Among them, the top one (01) startup will get BDT 1,00,00,000 as BIG Grant. The remaining fifty (50) startups will be awarded BDT 10,00,000 as a Grant from the iDEA Project. A total of 6 crores BDT will be awarded to the startups through BIG 2023, along with investment opportunities, mentoring and other facilities.
Finally, BIG is an excellent initiative that will help drive innovation and entrepreneurship in Bangladesh. It is expected to attract a large number of innovative startups. The organizer believes that the grant will provide a remarkable opportunity for entrepreneurs to access funding and resources that will help them mature their businesses and create a positive mark on the socio economy of Bangladesh. The BIG platform is a fitting tribute to the legacy of Bangabandhu and his vision for a prosperous, innovative and smart Bangladesh. It serves as a reminder to all aspiring entrepreneurs that with hard work and dedication, they too can make a meaningful impact globally.
The Bangabandhu Innovation Grant (BIG) platform has an exciting activation campaign for 2023 in all 8 divisions of Bangladesh. The campaign desires to create awareness and encourage participation from entrepreneurs and startups across the country. The activation campaign will be a series of programs and activities planned to engage with the startup community and provide them with an opportunity to showcase their innovative ideas. The campaign will include networking events, mentorship sessions, and workshops on different topics related to entrepreneurship and innovation.
The campaign will also leverage social media and digital channels to reach a wider audience and encourage participation from remote areas. The platform will use targeted advertising and social media campaigns to attract and engage with potential applicants. The activation campaign will be a collaborative effort with local stakeholders, including academic institutes, universities, incubators, accelerators, and industry associations or trade bodies. These initiatives will assist creating a supportive ecosystem for startups and provide them with access to resources, mentorship, and funding.
WHO CAN APPLY
BIG, the platform for ICT-based innovations, welcomes applications from anyone (Bangladeshi Citizen) with a unique idea, product, or service.
- Previous One BIG winners (Champion) cannot apply.
- Previous BIG winners (10 Lac Grant) can't apply for the BDT 10 lac award category of BIG 2023 but they can apply for Investments possibilities.
- Those involved in criminal or illegal activities cannot apply.
Selection Process and Steps
The first step in the contest is to submit an application by the deadline through BIG website. Applications will then be screened, and a pitching session will be held in the second stage with the sorted applicants. The judges will evaluate different aspects of the initiative, such as innovation, feasibility, impact, business opportunity, team, customer needs, and market demand, among others. The selected startups will then participate in a three-day boot camp where they will receive training and mentoring to prepare them for the final pitching session. The expert panel of judges will choose the top 51 startups, including one that will receive the BIG award as the winner.
Submission Starts > Campaign & Promotion > Submission Ends > Pre Pitching Screening > Pitching > Primary Selection > Boot camp > Top 51 Startups Selection > Final Pitching > Winners announcement for BIG 2023
- Visit to www.big.gov.bd for the application submission.
- Any student, non-student, or individual who has an ICT-based innovative idea, product or service can apply in BIG.
- Start by reading through the contest guidelines carefully to ensure that your startup meets all eligibility criteria.
- Compile all the necessary information and materials required for the application, such as your pitch deck, business plan, financial projections and Contact information.
- Register at the contest website and begin the application process, following the prompts and filling in all required fields.
- Be sure to include complete and accurate information about your startup, including the members of your team, your product or service, the market opportunity, and your revenue model.
- Use clear and concise language, avoiding jargon or technical terms that may be unfamiliar to the judges.
- If requested, provide links to any relevant websites, social media pages, or online demos of your product or service.
- Follow any formatting or submission guidelines specified by the contest organizers, such as file size or document type.
- Double-check your application for accuracy and completeness before submitting it, and make sure to save a copy for your records.
- Once your application is submitted, check your email regularly for any updates or requests for additional information from the contest authority.
- Finally, be sure to submit your application before the deadline, and take note of any next steps or timelines for the contest, such as notification of finalists or dates for pitching to judges.
Terms and Conditions
Any Bangladeshi citizen & Bangladeshi startup can apply for the grant subject to the following conditions for their invented product or service;
- The applicant must be a startup or entrepreneur;
- The proposed product or service must be ICT based;
- The invented product or service must be at the prototype level or above;
- The product or service must be innovative;
- The product or service must have a positive impact on social change, economic development and the environment;
- Must be a legally established entity;
- Applications will only be accepted online. You have to apply through the official website of BIG;
- In addition to filling out the form provided online, the additional documents must be submitted which are asked along with necessary audiovisuals.
- Previous One BIG winners (Champion) cannot apply.
- Previous BIG winners (10 Lac Grant) can't apply for the BDT 10 lac award category but they can apply for Investments possibilities.
- Those involved in criminal or illegal activities cannot apply.
PITCH Deck Guideline
- Keep the pitch deck concise and focused, with no more than 10-12 slides.
- Start with a clear intro that captures the attention and clearly explains what your startup does and why it's important.
- Summarize the market opportunity, size, and issue your startup is addressing or solving.
- Outline your unique value proposition and competitive advantage, and explain how you plan to differentiate yourself from competitors.
- Clearly define your business model and revenue sources, including how you want to make money and how you will set your prices.
- Provide evidence of market validation, such as customer feedback, pilot programs, or early sales figures.
- Share your go-to-market strategy, including your target customer segments, marketing channels, and sales approach.
- Discuss your product or service roadmap and how you plan to evolve and improve your offering over time.
- Explain in short the technology architecture.
- Detail your financial projections, including revenue, costs, and projected profitability, as well as any funding you've already received and future fundraising plans.
- Highlight any partnerships or collaborations that could help accelerate your growth or increase your market reach.
- Address any potential risks or challenges your startup may face and how you plan to mitigate them.
- Showcase any traction your startup has already achieved, such as customer or media recognition or key hires.
- Share your team's background and expertise, and demonstrate how your team is well-suited to execute your startup's vision.
- Use visuals, such as charts or graphics, to help illustrate key points.
- Finish with a strong call to action, inviting investors to take the next steps in learning more about your startup.
The top one startup will receive BDT 1,00,00,000 as BIG Grant, and the remaining 50 startups will be awarded BDT 10,00,000 as a grant from the iDEA Project.
A total of 6 crores BDT will be awarded to the startups through BIG 2023, along with investment opportunities, mentoring, and other facilities.