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Friday, December 14, 2007

Business mentors help set up 450 units

The Bharatiya Yuva Shakti Trust has pioneered the concept of business mentoring, with experienced businessmen helping underprivileged youth set up small businesses.

The Bharatiya Yuva Shakti Trust (BYST), a non-profit organisation set up in 1991, helps disadvantaged youth set up business enterprises. The organisation has pioneered the concept of ‘business mentoring’ in India and helped establish nearly 450 business units in Delhi, Haryana, Madras, Hyderabad and Pune.

BYST assists young people in the age-group 18-35 years who are unemployed or under-employed to set up their own entrepreneurial venture. Each applicant is extended a loan of Rs 50,000 that can be paid back within three years at the interest rate of 12.24 per cent per annum.

The organisation also ensures that each beneficiary interacts with his ‘business mentor’ on a one-on-one basis to get first-hand business experience. Over the last decade, the organisation has supported various enterprises ranging from desktop publishing to herbal cosmetics.

The key to the organisation’s success lies in the corporate assistance that it has received. The BYST board of trustees, chaired by Mantosh Sondhi, includes eminent members from India’s business world like Rahul Bajaj, Lakshmi V Venkatesan, Ratan Tata and Jamshyd N Godrej, to name a few. They have provided financial support, business experience and expertise to the selected candidates.

With Rs 40,000 from the BYST, P K Shoba launched a screen-printing business, which has an annual turnover of Rs 11 lakh and employs ten people. Similarly Pradeep Lumba from Delhi started manufacturing corrugated boxes. His current annual turnover has reached a crore.

Recently BYST tied up with the Keep Walking Fund (KWF), a Johnnie Walker community initiative to ensure individual progress. As part of this initiative, a corpus of Rs 1.06 crore has been given to BYST to finance its rural operations for the next three years.

Says M N Sanyal, executive officer of BYST (Pune), “Our organisation coordinates with various NGOs, vocational schools and training institutes which are operating at the grass-roots level to provide entrepreneurial assistance to individuals on easy financial terms.”

Contact: Bharatiya Yuva Shakti Trust
C\o CII, 23 Institutional Area
Lodi Road, New-Delhi-110003
Tel: 91-11-462994-7\4693079

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