Entrepreneurs Associates

Armed with the Ashoka Fellowship, in September of the same year, Neichute assembled a group of about 20 of his closest friends and associates who had participated in some of his prior ventures. He shared his vision and concept about the ‘Entrepreneurs Associates’ while at the same time also announcing his plan to resign from his present teaching assignment to dive headlong into carving out his idea. He invited them to participate in the new undertaking as they camped for two days at the Kohima Tourist Lodge to discuss road maps for the organisation that he was convinced could be one of the solutions to intervene and contribute for effective social transformation.

 At that juncture in Nagaland, the story was not too different from 1992 with the government still being the largest employment agency. Neichute foresaw a future where the government would very soon become saturated, creating disillusion and frustration in the fragile society which was still reeling from the effects of ongoing conflicts afflicting the region. The group also collectively perceived the dangers of economic activities being one sided and solely controlled by non-locals with history and communities replete with such examples.

 The meeting culminated in the creation of the Entrepreneurs Associates with some 16 founding core team members committing to contribute a corpus of Rs 500 per month. The fund would form the base of the crowd funding initiative expected to launch and support young people to take up entrepreneurship as a part of building the nation. After a few months they contributed additional 100 rupees to pay for a regular office assistant. Operating in a one roomed wooden office at the Kitsubozou Colony, Kohima, the EA members began the pioneering work of remaking the non-existent entrepreneurial scene in the state in the years that followed. The founding core team members led by Neichute Doulo as the coordinator included Kudecho Khamo, Shekhoto Resuh, Vekhosayi Nyekha, Zapucho Tetseo, Kedunyi Khape, Wetso Mero, Zhopayi Nakro, Deo Movi, Weku Mero, Kovetso Venuh, Thepuphi Kapuh, Jonathan Doulo and the Green Valley Society which included three members Kennedy Khutsoh, Khosato Huire and Kesalie Thopi.