Five entrepreneurs pitch business ideas during Season 3 Jabchor session

They were selected from around 29 applicants that the BCCI received

Five entrepreneurs pitched their business ideas to investors during the Season 3 Jabchor session on Friday, which was organized by the Bhutan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) in partnership with the Royal Monetary Authority.

For Season 3 Jabchor session, five entrepreneurs were selected with at least a year experience in their business and they were groomed for a month.

The BCCI received around 29 applications for Season 3, however only 20 of them presented their ideas for introductory elevator pitching session.

However, the number of applicants they received has increased compared to the previous two seasons.

Drukyul Production, iHub, Mineral Pigment, Paysap and Zhiwa are the five entrepreneurs selected and the Chamber has also received around 50 potential investees within Bhutan and around 33 overseas potential investees from Australia, USA, Canada, Belgium and the UK.

Karma Namgyel, from Sergithang in Tsirang, is the founder of Drukyul Production, who intends to raise a fund Nu 3.5mn and 20% as equity share.

His manufacturing unit aims to help environment conservation through minimizing the usage of plastic bags in Bhutan. The raw material used in the production process is jute fabric, which is imported from India and Bangladesh.

Drukyul Production aims to replace brute plastic carry bags and polypropylene (PP) carry bags with biodegradable carry bags, and enhance the conservation of environment and stop plastic and PP pollution.

Karma Namgyel said they are not only into the objective of maximizing profit, but is also aiming to go green and create employment opportunities.

He said with the fund he plans to invest 80% of the fund for raw materials and 20% of the fund for labor.

He mentioned that the jute raw material is degradable and can be used as manure, so they plan to diversify in agriculture development like mulching purposes and also soil erosion matting.

He said that he also plans to produce foot-mat, table cloth and laundry basket and wishes to supply sacks to vegetable vendors.

Tashi Wangdi, from Trashigang and a BCA graduate, is the founder of iHub, a Business Consultation and Co-working firm. He intends to raise fund Nu 5mn and 20% as equity share.

iHub Co-Work, according to Tashi Wangdi, is the solution to the mobile workers’ dilemma, providing an attractive shared environment optimized for mobile professional and work team.

iHub Co-Work appeals to a wide market-from soft ware development and design teams to entrepreneurs and researchers.

It provides a flexible work environment offering clients communal and private spaces with secure, hi-speed WiFi, accessibility 24/7, parking, and business options such as conference rooms, white boards, printers, scanners, and coffee.

Tashi Wangdi said after investment he wants to build a co-working space, which will be affordable for anyone starting new business or a place for expat, tourist and tech freelance.

He also mentioned that at co-working space, they will have hot desk, shared cabin and private office along with shared amenities, conference hall and access to community events.

Rinzin Dorjee, from Kurtoe Khoma, is the founder of Mineral Pigment Production and requires a funding of Nu 2.49mn and 10% as equity share.

The company was established in 2017. After the completion of six years training in traditional painting at the Trashigangtse Zorig Institute, Rinzin Dorjee has been working for seven years in the painting field in and around the country.

During the course of working in the field, he said he has seen huge scope in producing mineral pigment and its market within and outside Bhutan.

The key focus of the company is to produce rock pigment within the country and make the products available to Zorig institutes and artists of the country to curtail the imports of the chemical color in the country.

He said with this fund he plans to procure machinery.

Namgay Tenzin is from Punakha and the founder of Paysap. He requires a fund of Nu 2.1mn for equity share of 30%.

Paysap is a Public Fin-Tech Start-Up aiming to sell public services and build a payment systems by firstly serving the public in many aspects of ticketing, couriering, helping represent their partnered clients and being their agent.

He said they operate the Public Utility Booth (PUB), which serves the public in the busy areas from all walks of life, irrespective of where they are, or whether they’ve a phone or not or a bank account or not.

He said that he plans to build four public utility booths and buy two public utility vehicles to upgrade the call diverting system and upgrade the overall system.

Dorji Dema, a B.Com (Finance) graduate from the Gedu College of Business Studies, is from Wangdue and the founder of Zhiwa. She requires a fund amount of Nu 7.5mn, 30% as equity share.

Zhiwa manufactures healthy plant based protein, using naturally grown and non-dairy ingredients. The company aims to in spire people to be healthier, greener, and instill values of consumption.

“We provide quality, nutritional, tasty and healthy meat substitute products made from plants. We have launched veg meat jerky in October 2020 in the market,” Dorji Dema said.

She plans to manufacture frozen vegan beef, vegan chicken, vegan pork and sausages with this fund.

She mentioned that with this fund 86% of the fund will be keep in fixed asset, 13% for working capital and 1% for machinery setup.

Meanwhile, Jabchor is a pilot initiative inspired by the concept of ‘Angel Investors’. Angel Investors are individuals who provide entrepreneurs and startups with capital during the early stages of business, in return for ownership equity.

In addition to capital, angel investors can also provide valuable advice based on their own experience and connections to their networks. Angel investors invest individually or through the formalities of groups or angel networks which enables in pooling of capital and better access to finance. The RMA initiated the Jabchor program and it is currently being coordinated by the BCCI with support from relevant stakeholders.

Dechen Dolkar from Thimphu