LAHORE - Two startups of Plan9 of the Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB) participated in the 4th Kazan OIC Youth Entrepreneurship Forum held in Kazan, Russia.

Plan9 startup Studentary won the competition and received prize money of $3,000 from the organisation. Studentary is a market place for the books both new and second hand.

Over 500 startups applied from all over the globe and the top 28 got a chance to present their ideas at Kazan annual summit. Two Plan9 startups were among the shortlisted, including Studentary represented by Laraib Ali and AIAdverts represented by Hafee Atyub. OIC conducted one-week training for the shortlisted startups along with mentorship, training and coaching.

Studentary from Plan9 was declared the best of 2018 by the team of investors and coaches at OIC Kazan. The basic idea behind the initiative devised is to provide books readily to consumers and at a cheaper cost to the needy. They have partnered with more than 40 schools and two leading universities of Pakistan.

“With a 25% increase in the prices of books annually, we certainly believe that books are the barrier between people and education in Pakistan, so we decided to create a platform for people where they can sell and buy old books much effortlessly,” Said Laraib Ali, team leader at Startup.

There has always been an insufficiency of such portals in Pakistan. Initiatives like Studentary have made gains in the progress of the society and it will not be wrong to say that startups can shape the future. “Plan9’s contribution to infuse a trend of entrepreneurs in Pakistan has much greater significance and we hope to see more innovation come out of the country,” she said.

Also, Board of Revenue (BoR) and Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB)’s joint flagship e-Stamping project has crossed all time higher figure of Rs75 billion revenue collection till today, which is an unprecedented contribution to the national economy through automation of the process.

This was stated at a meeting chaired by Dr Umar Saif, chairman of the PITB while reviewing performance and progress of e-Stamping project here on Friday.

The meeting was informed that total e-Stamp papers (Judicial – non judicial) sold/ issued through this system were 2,887,739 in number out of which 2,648,362 were non-judicial and 239,377 were judicial e-Stamp papers. So far, 4.7 million plus unique users have consulted e-Stamping System.