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Final edition of SIDBI ET MSME Conclave sees high-powered sessions, talks of cluster significance for MSMEs

The final edition of the SIDBI ET MSME Conclave culminated with insightful sessions in Aurangabad that discussed aspects of prime significance for the MSME sector.

The conclave — a series of events held in six cities — aimed to bring together MSMEs, policymakers and ecosystem enablers. The programme looked at tapping the next wave of growth opportunities, fostering knowledge exchange, enabling networking and helping to find ways to tackle challenges for sustainable growth among such enterprises.

The Aurangabad edition kicked off with an opening keynote from Prakash Kumar, DMD, SIDBI, who spoke about how the institution looks at the three important sides of funding in the MSME sector — equity, debt and guarantee. Kumar also spoke of a fund of funds for startups. “In the last 6-7 years, through a fund of funds for startups, a Rs 10,000 crore fund, investments have been made in almost 130+ equity funds across the country,” he said.

Next up was a fireside chat with NN Estolkar, Joint Director, MSME DFO, Aurangabad. He spoke of the aspects pertaining to Atmanirbhar Maharashtra – a road map to sustainable economic growth and regional development. Estolkar spoke about how every entrepreneur has great potential and scope for development.

Talking about the Maharashtra Samruddhi Mahamarg, which looks at improved connectivity and infrastructure, he stated how it can be beneficial: “It is going to be a big catalyst for industries to ship goods from the entire nearby region.”

This was followed by a special address from Kishor Devidan, President Jalna, Laghu Udyog Bharati, who highlighted the crucial aspects small businesses should keep in mind to scale up. He spoke about fostering micro-entrepreneurship in Aurangabad and how opportunities within key manufacturing sectors can be realised. “For such businesses to grow, land availability is the most important factor. Regular power supply is also important to cut down instances of production loss,” he added.

Talking about facilitating credit to MSMEs in the right way, SN Singh, CGM, SIDBI, said it is important to focus on how credit to MSMEs is being enabled through digital formats.

The session then moved to an engaging panel discussion that featured industry representatives from varied sectors. The discussion centred around the role of cluster development in enhancing productivity and empowering the MSMEs of Aurangabad.

Sunil Raithatha, Managing Director, Vinodrai Engineers, recalled how he saw his first 3D printing machine in an auto cluster 10 years ago. “Today, in Marathwada, there are 20-25+ 3D printing machines. Bringing future tech for common use and infusing in MSMEs is a very important role of clustering,” he said.