New York City’s Next Idea Contest – Won by Indian Institute of Technology Students

Editor’s Note: We are indebted to Mr. Raj Mundhe for bringing this story to our attention. Mr. Mundhe, an avid reader and an old friend, is a noted financial advisor in the Metro Boston area.

The NYC Next Idea contest, sponsored by The Economic Development Corporation, is one of Mayor Bloomberg’s initiatives to improve New York City’s image as a place hospitable to entrepreneurs.

On Thursday, January 7, Mayor Bloomberg announced that a team of students from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, India had won the inaugural NYC Next Idea contest.

Winning team members, Vinayshankar Kulkarni, Aashish Dattani, and
Sriram Kalyanaraman with Mayor Michael Bloomberg – Source New York Times

According to a New York Times article, the winning idea is a system for storing energy in large batteries around the city that would discharge electricity into the power grid to meet demand. The flexible mechanism could serve as a backup source to avert gaps in the power supply and make the grid more reliable, according to the winning entry.

The winners, who called their venture Greenext Technology Solutions, will receive $20,000 in cash and help in setting up their business in the city – if they decide to come New York and can obtain the necessary visas. Mr. Bloomberg used the announcement as an opportunity to reiterate his view that the federal government should make it easier for foreigners to come to New York to work.

No one can say for sure whether the finalists’ ideas will translate into successful job-creating businesses,” the mayor said in a statement. “What a shame, though, if they and countless others are denied the opportunity even to try.”

Kudos to Mayor Bloomberg for his vision and courage to encourage immigration of bright entrepreneurial student talent to New York City. In our opinion, this is the smartest solution for America’s widening gap in science & technology education.

Read the full story in the New York Times article by Patrick McGeehan titled New York’s Next Idea Comes From Students in India.

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