Sonam Tashi’s Miniature Bhutan, a 0.3cm statue of Buddha carved out of the lead of a pencil, bagged the best idea in a competition among 75 participants of Advanced Entrepreneurship Course (AEC) that ended in Thimphu on October 4.

The participants presented about 38 business ideas at Thimphu Techpark.

Sonam Tashi took leave from his job to join the training, to learn writing better proposals. “I wanted to try this about three years ago, but I had no idea how to start. It is very difficult to start a business.”

He said that he wanted to create miniature souvenirs which are good in quality and which are made in Bhutan.

The Buddha could only be seen with the use of a magnifying lens.

As part of the course, the participants had to write a business proposal, pitch the idea and create a prototype.

Kinley Wangdi’s Green Vibes was declared the next best idea, followed by Zigyel Tshering’s Nima’s Homestay.

Chief executive officer of Techpark, Tshering Cigay Dorji (PhD), said that countries all over the world are supporting entrepreneurship. “It has become the need of the time. Unlike the times in the past, government jobs are few. Even the job opportunities in private and corporate sectors are not many. It has come to a state where young people have to find their own jobs.”

He said that entrepreneurial skills would not only benefit an individual to become an entrepreneur but also become a good employee.

Programme manager of Loden Foundation, Tshering Pelden, said that there were innovative ideas, however, some ideas needed more research.  “One of the participants had already written a proposal to Loden Foundation.”

She said that the idea proposed would be evaluated based on Loden Foundation’s guidelines.

Pema Wangdi, chief executive officer of Rural Enterprise Development Corporation Limited, said that some of the ideas developed could fit in lending programme.

Techpark in collaboration with the labour ministry conducted the programme for 21 days. Apart from providing working lunch, participants were also provided travel allowance.

Currently, 47 participants in Dewathang and 36 in Tsirang are participating in Basic Entrepreneur Course (BEC).

BEC in Thimphu will begin from October 9.

Rinchen Zangmo