The Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector is projected to be worth Rs 1 trillion by 2028 with significant contributions from 63.4 million MSMEs. There is no doubt that MSMEs will play a vital role in boosting the manufacturing sector and economy of India. Hence, the Government of India has introduced various schemes to support MSMEs. The ASPIRE Scheme is one such initiative from the Ministry of MSME.

This blog elaborates on all the details of this scheme.


ASPIRE full form is ‘A Scheme for Promotion of Innovation, Rural Industries and Entrepreneurship’. The government launched this scheme in 2015. The main purpose of this scheme is to set up a network of technology centers and incubation facilities. These centers will fast-track entrepreneurship and promote startups for innovations in agriculture.

The agriculture sector in India is among the largest across the globe. It contributes 17.8% of the nation’s Gross Value Added (GVA) and employs 54.5% of the total workforce. However, there is an urgent need for technology and digitization in agriculture to reach its full potential.

These innovations are also necessary to meet the challenges such as climate change, decreasing earnings of smallholder farmers, unemployment, sustainability, food security, etc.

Hence, ASPIRE will provide immense value to MSMEs and uplift rural industries.

Objectives of Scheme

There are five broad objectives for introducing ASPIRE:

  • Reduce unemployment by creating new jobs.
  • Encourage entrepreneurship culture in India.
  • Facilitate much-needed grassroots economic development at the district level.
  • Foster innovative business solutions that focus on unmet social needs.
  • Strengthen the MSME sector competitiveness by promoting innovations.

Scope and Benefits

The government has allocated a corpus of Rs 200 crore for ASPIRE MSME. This scheme offers various benefits to the entrepreneurs within the scope of this corpus:

 Value addition to agricultural and forest products.

  • Automation of agricultural practices and operations.
  • Monetary aid to access technologically-advanced plants and machinery.
  • Recycling of pre-harvest and post-harvest waste.
  • Get access to the latest technologies and infrastructure.
  • Creation of new and modern business models for value addition and aggregation in the rural sector.
  • Creation of innovative business models to generate local employment and make a social impact in rural areas. 

Components of Schemes

The ASPIRE Scheme has three important components:

  • Livelihood Business Incubation (LBI) 

The LBI component aims to establish business incubators to create a favorable ecosystem for MSME entrepreneurs. These incubators will provide entrepreneurship education and skill development training to youth. This will enable employment generation at the local level.

  • Technology Business Incubation (TBI)

The TBI component aims to foster technologies that need commercialization and adoption. It will provide technology expertise and knowledge transfer to MSMEs. It will also give them hands-on experience in project management, seed capital assistance, and marketing assistance to grow their ventures.

  • Startup Promotion

This component falls under the purview of the Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI). It will assist MSMEs to secure funding for scalable and commercially viable ideas. MSMEs can get capital from SIDBI in the form of equity, impact fund, angel fund, challenge fund, venture capital funds, etc. It also helps MSMEs to establish forward and backward market linkages.

The outcomes of these components are as under:

  • 102 LBI and 22 TBI set up for the period up to 2021-22
  • Rs9641.33 lakh funding for the period up to 2022-23

ASPIRE Scheme Eligibility

You are eligible to apply for the ASPIRE Scheme if you meet any of the following conditions:

  • Entrepreneurs who need capital to launch or grow their startup.
  • Technical, academic, and research institutions (including the ones with a focus on rural and agro-based industries).
  • MSMEs with registered Entrepreneurs Memorandum.
  • Institutions or agencies in the fields of technology, business management, rural development, and entrepreneur development under the Government of India or State Government control.
  • A corporate entity under a public-private partnership model can set up Livelihood Business Incubation (LBI).
  • Existing incubation centers run by Government of India ministries and departments or national and regional level institutions dedicated to agro-innovations.
  • New incubation centers are set up by eligible private institutions such as universities, academic institutions, technology parks, industry associations, R&D laboratories, and government entities.

Application Process

You have to submit an application form along with the proposal to the ASPIRE Plan Steering Committee under the Ministry of MSME. This committee oversees the policy, coordination, and management support for the ASPIRE applicants.

The application process for government schemes can be time-consuming. If you are looking for on-demand credit, then you can explore business loan solutions from Indifi. The online lending platform offers quick and hassle-free unsecured loans at competitive interest rates. Here are MSME financing options from Indifi:

Sr NoLoan TypePurpose
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2.Line of CreditCredit limit to manage regular cash flow
3.Invoice DiscountingFunds on outstanding invoices
4.Merchant Cash AdvanceEasy-to-manage loans based on POS machine swipes

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The ASPIRE Scheme provides a solid foundation for MSMEs to start or grow their business in the agro-industry. It can equip you with the necessary capital, mentorship, skills, knowledge, and other assistance. You can get more information about this scheme here.


Q1: What is the objective of the ASPIRE Scheme?

A1: The scheme aims to foster entrepreneurship, innovation, and job creation in the agro-industry through MSMEs.

Q2: Who can apply for the ASPIRE Scheme?

A2: All registered MSMEs, academic institutions, and other agencies focused on agro-innovations and rural development can apply for this scheme.

Q3: Who is responsible for managing the ASPIRE Scheme?

A3: The Ministry of MSME under the Government of India manages the ASPIRE Scheme.

Q4: What ways can MSMEs utilize the grant under the ASPIRE Scheme?

A4: You can utilize the grant for any purpose as stated under the scheme guidelines.

Q5: How to apply for the ASPIRE Scheme?

A5: You can apply for the scheme by submitting a formal proposal to the Steering Committee of the Ministry of MSME.

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