DSSE Entrepreneurship Day – Forging Ahead After a Decade of Excellence

The Desai Sethi School of Entrepreneurship (DSSE) commemorated its remarkable 10-year journey with the ‘DSSE Entrepreneurship Day – A Decade of Innovation: Nurturing Tomorrow’s Visionaries’ on January 31, 204, at the IIT Bombay campus.

A Decade of Entrepreneurial Excellence at DSSE

The Desai Sethi School of Entrepreneurship (DSSE) was set up in 2014 through the generous contributions of alumnus Mr. Bharat Desai (B.Tech., 1975, Electrical Engineering) and his wife Ms. Neerja Sethi, both Co-Founders of Syntel Inc., and the Desai Sethi Foundation. DSSE has richly contributed to the entrepreneurship ecosystem through training and mentoring aspiring entrepreneurs through their startup journey by offering courses and a popular minor program in Entrepreneurship as well as pre-incubation programs and venture creation programs. In its decade-long journey, the DSSE has trained aspiring entrepreneurs through courses and pre-incubation programs and has accomplished significant milestones, including the training of over 3,000 students, mentoring more than 750 individuals, forming over 200 venture teams, and initiating more than 60 startups.

DSSE Entrepreneurship Day: A Confluence of Innovation and Vision

‘DSSE Entrepreneurship Day’ brought together luminaries in the fields of Innovation and Entrepreneurship from the government, academia, and industry, fostering a collaborative platform for entrepreneurs, investors, and incubators.

The day began with an address by Prof. Subhasis Chaudhuri, Director, IIT Bombay, who spoke on how DSSE fits into IITB’s Vision and Strategy. In his address Prof. Chaudhuri said,
“The DSSE Entrepreneurship Day has not only marked a significant milestone in our journey of excellence but has also served as a testament to the collaborative spirit that fuels innovation and entrepreneurship. As DSSE looks forward to the next decade, the institution remains steadfast in its commitment to contributing to the growth of India’s entrepreneurial landscape and empowering thought leaders and change-makers of tomorrow.”

This was followed by Dr. Abhay Karandikar, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, who elaborated on the Role of Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Nation Building. In his compelling speech, Dr. Karandikar highlighted how India’s economic growth over the past decade is a direct result of a significant surge in startups and the emergence of unicorns.

Dr. Chintan Vaishnav, Mission Director, Atal Innovation Mission, traced the Evolving Role of Education and Academic Incubators and highlighted their instrumental role in empowering new startups and young entrepreneurs.

Mr. Bharat Desai, Co-Founder, Syntel Inc., and the Desai-Sethi Foundation joined the festivities online. In his impassioned address, Mr. Desai illustrated DSSE’s Vision and Intent moving forward. He said, “I have a deep-rooted conviction about the transformational impact of education and entrepreneurship in society. Our entrepreneurial journey has been so fulfilling, that we felt compelled to launch a school to enable thousands of young men and women to pursue their dreams of becoming entrepreneurs and changing the world. That’s how the Desai Sethi School of Entrepreneurship was born.” He added that as leaders IIT Bombay and the Desai Sethi School of Entrepreneurship must dream big. “That is our responsibility and what society and India expect from us,” he stressed.

The Head of DSSE, Prof. Anu Narasimhan, traced DSSE’s journey over the past decade and its plans for the future. In her address, she said, “At DSSE, our vision extends beyond education; it encompasses empowerment, innovation, and societal change. With an unwavering commitment to nurturing the next generation of visionary leaders, we aspire to cultivate entrepreneurship programs and an empowering ecosystem where dreams are transformed into tangible realities, shaping a future where entrepreneurship catalyse positive impact on society.”

Panel Discussions

The first of the two panel discussions held was on the topic Entrepreneurship Education: Building Future Leaders. As the entrepreneurial mindset gains momentum in India, there is a growing significance towards imparting entrepreneurship education to students at the school and college levels. An illustrious panel engaged in thoughtful discussions and emphasised the need to provide students with pertinent knowledge and skills related to business. They also emphasised the key role IIT Bombay can play in contributing to this mission.

The panellists included:

– Rajesh Gopinathan, Former CEO, TCS
– Shrijeet Mishra, Chief Innovation Officer, Aditya Birla Group
– Anuradha Razdan, Executive Director HR & CHRO, Unilever S. Asia
– Moderator: Prof. Devdip Purkayastha, DSSE

The second panel discussion of the day was on the topic Entrepreneurship Ecosystem: Enabling Job Creators. The panel discussed the need to empower job creators within India’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Panellists included:

– Ankit Mehta, Co-Founder, Idea Forge
– Namita Dalmia, Co-Founder, Enzia Ventures
– Shibabrata Das, Co-Founder, Atomberg
– Moderator: Prof. Sankalp Pratap, DSSE

The event then felicitated individuals who were responsible for the growth of DSSE.

Then Prof Gudi, Dean ACR, announced the setting up of the ‘Anand Kusre Award’ for entrepreneurship to two students every year. The award has been set up with the generous contribution of Padma Bhushan recipient of Literature and Education, Prof. Jagdish Sheth, of Goizuetta Business School, Emory University, Atlanta.

Finally, the event came to a close with a Vote of Thanks by Prof. Anu Narasimhan.


In celebrating a decade of innovation and excellence, the Desai Sethi School of Entrepreneurship (DSSE) at IIT Bombay has not only marked significant milestones but has also paved the way for a future brimming with visionary leaders and impactful startups. As DSSE looks ahead, Entrepreneurship Day stands as a beacon of hope and symbolises not just a milestone but a dynamic commitment to shaping the entrepreneurial landscape of tomorrow.

Onwards and Upwards!