SBI IT Innovation Start up Engagement Programme

SBI IT Innovation Start up Engagement Programme (IT-ISEP): With a new technology emerging each day, new startups are taking shape in their quest to become the next google, face book. In countries like India, funding has become a major challenge for the start ups to take giant leap to scale up their operations across the new horizons. Though the government has been working for the betterment of the startup eco-system, still one has to try their best out to get funding from the investors. Public sector banks like SBI have been engaged in funding technology startups with a win-win objective ahead in long term.

What is SBI IT Innovation Start-up Engagement Programme ?

State Bank of India (SBI) , India’s largest bank has launched a unique Start up Loan programme ( SBI IT-ISEP) to encourage young entrepreneurs in making their business idea a live startup. Unlike, the regular business loan schemes, in this programme State Bank will consider the procurement of Innovative IT services that are useful for bank.


  1. To encourage IT start-ups to leverage the benefits of “Digital India” and “Make in India’ programmes and in the process contribute to the development of products and services for the banking sector.
  2. To achieve deeper and collaborative understanding of the technology startups.
  3. A win-win initiative: To improve the capabilities of innovative young entrepreneurs for developing ground breaking ideas at a low cost to the Bank.

Key matters:

  1. An initial outlay of Rs. 50 crore has been allocated by the SBI to the IT Innovation Start-up Engagement Programme (IT-ISEP)
  2. As a part of this programme, SBI would consider investments and debt/structured engagements of up to Rs.3 crore with an Indian registered entity for promoting their business innovations using IT in India for banking and related technology.
  3. Financial assistance will be provided in any one or combination of the below mentioned forms
    • Long term loan
    • Quasi equity/ Equity/ Mezzanine equity. Mezzanine equity gives the lender the right to convert to his money as an ownership or equity interest in the company in case of default
    • Joint/Restricted Intellectual property right
    • Perpetual unlimited free license for use of technology across State Bank Group.
    • Resources and skilled manpower costs for proof of concept and innovation
    • Any other form that would satisfy the objectives of the programme

Eligibility for this scheme:

Following conditions must be met to apply under this programme

  1. Should be an Indian firm/company.
  2. The firm/company should neither be a subsidiary of a foreign company nor have shareholding by any foreign company.
  3. The firm/company should not be older than 7 years as on the date of making this application.
  4. The turnover of the firm/company should not have been more than Rs. 25 crore in any of the years of its operations.
  5. The firm/company applying for this should own the Intellectual property rights for the product/services offered to the SBI
  6. Last and most important is that the firm/company should have obtained the "Certificate of Recognition" as a Startup from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion) as per Notification No.G.S.R. 501(E) OR should be in the process of applying for the same

Application process:

Entities who qualify as per the above mentioned criteria are required to apply online Bank will evaluate the entities through a multi-stage process, and the result of the evaluation process will be communicated to the applicant in writing. The outcome will also be available for viewing online on this portal.

Things to be kept in mind before applying:

  1. One should be ready to engage in joint/restricted intellectual property rights under which the start up shall provide the entire source code and documentation of the software including the base software to the Bank at the beginning of the engagement to facilitate future modifications
  2. After termination of the contract with the startup, the entire source code including customizations and changes in the design made in such software/application/technology/solution shall be owned by the Bank and the Bank shall be allowed to customize it for its internal use within the State Bank Group. No charges shall be payable to the vendor for this arrangement. This would neither allow the bank nor the start-up to sell the technology any third party.