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These three companies are among the 15 that have emerged from the startup fund of the state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC).
Out of its Rs 100 crore startup fund, ONGC has already given Rs 61.31 crore to support energy industry solutions and promote innovation in the energy sector.
According to Rajesh Kumar Srivastava, interim chairman of ONGC, the 2016-launched ONGC Startup Fund is in the process of obtaining the most recent valuations of the firms it has invested in from an IBBI-registered valuer.
According to Srivastava, who spoke with ET, “those startups who have been working on creative ideas are located across the country and have been successful in their various undertakings.”
According to him, ONGC encourages startups in their early stages and has invested up to Rs 5 crore in a select handful.
Methane is transformed into ingestible proteins for aquaculture and components of chicken feed by Bengaluru-based String Bio. By converting carbon monoxide and HO into water and carbon dioxide, Chakr Innovation, based in Pune, collects particulate matter from the exhaust of diesel engines to reduce pollution and minimise carbon footprint. In a ceramic heat exchanger, StrautX Technologies collects solar thermal energy as hot air, and a Stirling engine turns the heat energy into electricity.
Additionally, the fund has supported firms like Chennai-based Planys Technologies, Mumbai’s Sagar Defence Engineering, and Bengaluru’s Sparkyo Technology.
According to Srivastava, the Rs 100 crore startup fund was established in ONGC’s diamond jubilee year to support, nurture, and incubate fresh concepts in the oil and gas industry.
The full support system for companies will be provided by ONGC as part of this effort, including seed money, guidance, mentoring, market connections, and follow-ups. The goal is to improve the amount of original, workable ideas being contributed to the oil and gas industry.
Through the development of an ecosystem that supports the growth of startups in the oil and gas sector, which has enormous potential for technology-enabled businesses, this programme will encourage entrepreneurship among the younger generation.
For instance, String Bio has created a method for turning methane into a protein that may be consumed. While edible protein for use in agricultural and animal nutrition has been produced, work on product development and nutritional validity for humans is still ongoing.
With a focus on decarbonization, it uses waste gases on the supply side to offer sustainable alternatives to things like meat for human nourishment and potent pesticides in the agriculture industry.
It recently received the first microbial bio-stimulant patent granted in India. Tests of the organic product on 40 crops in 20 states found yield increases of 15% to 40%. A facility is being built to increase the manufacture of these goods.
ONGC contributed Rs 4.5 crore to String Bio’s seed fundraising round in 2019. The business was able to secure $20 million (about Rs 150 crore) in a funding round earlier this year from a number of investors, including those based in Australia and India.
“Animal feed is produced annually for the sustenance of both cattle and pets in excess of 1.1 billion tonnes worldwide. Natural resources are under pressure as a result. Vinod Kumar, co-founder and managing director of String Bio, stated that the feed sector is dependent on more than 75% of the soy and 65% of the total fish harvested globally to maintain its output.
A greenhouse gas like methane can be converted into protein using String’s unique fermentation mechanism. Minerals and amino acids are present in its upcoming products to meet the nutritional needs of the animal.
“Our goods serve farmers, manufacturers, the feed industry, and animals. By reducing reliance on plant and animal proteins, we hope to change how the industry approaches nutrition, Kumar added.
A dual fuel kit and a type-approved retrofit emission control device (RECD), both recently released by Chakr Innovation, will enable consumers to operate their DG sets for two hours even during the winter.
The Central Pollution Control Board’s recommended lab granted type approval certification to this business, making it the first in India to install RECD on diesel generators.
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