India And The Startup Dynamics
India has been in the limelight for some time now for its voracious appetite for growth. It will soon have the world’s largest Smartphone user growth rate surpassing the US. The Government of India has already initiated various programs to bring internet for every user. International News Organization, BBC launched an ‘India-focused’ page and has since then continued to invest their money for the cause of this programme for new programming, local language, and digital news content.
This digital revolution in India is ushered in by entrepreneurship which has impacted everyone from a local grocer to a well-established businessman. More than 800 startups are created annually in India, as this shows it is the world’s third largest and fastest growing country for these budding companies.
These startups with all digital solutions from primary to global are well positioned to address the entire Asian market, making it expand to the U.S and Europe. India’s population is moving more towards using eCommerce platforms, marketplaces, mobile apps and the Internet, thereby creating demand, need, and space for more digital products. These startups mainly focus on consumer Internet, big data and analytics and communication as their digital medium. The Millenials want to work for an organization with an innovative outlook, and these startups are giving them the platform.
Startups like Mobiwik and Paytm or FoodPanda provide innovative opportunities to small sellers who go unnoticed otherwise. New age entrepreneurs could very well be like in America as that of Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg. Companies like TCS and Infosys has made the biggest platform for Indians in the technology sector.
According to a study by EgonZehnder, there are more Indian CEOs than any other nationality after Americans in S&P 500 companies. Rajeev Suri, President, and CEO of Nokia, Sanjay Mehrotra, CEO of Sandisk Corporation, Francisco D’Souza, CEO of Cognizant, Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft and the more recent SundarPichai who has been appointed as CEO of Google have all contributed greatly to help India reach this position.
Following their footsteps and revolutionizing the digital arena are the startups who have established a whole new bunch of marketplace entrepreneurs. Even relatively older companies like Accenture and Microsoft are among those corporates which have built digitally-savvy, innovation-driven brands with the help of their Startup programmes.
Intel has recently joined the central government for an initiative - “Innovate for Digital India Challenge”with a total grant of Rs 1.5 crores and it is jointly being organised and funded by the Department of Science and Technology (DoST). Around 20 ideas would be selected from across the country and will be mentored for 12 weeks at the College of Engineering, Pune under the aegis of Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.
NASSCOM forecasts that if the pace at which the industry is growing continues, then the country will be seen nursing more than 11,500 techs for every digital startup by the end of 2020. Startups have also been tying up with each other in a service and support network where they mutually benefit from each other, accelerating growth and generating higher revenues in the process by seeking SEO gains from the alliances.
Another trending and important aspect of digital innovation in India is its well-maintained venture in communication and social Media. After the US, India is breaking the 100 million mark in Facebook user base, which has turned out to be a very powerful tool for both individuals and businesses in the recent past.
With the use of social media, companies can now reach out to a greater number of people in no time. With some investment of effort in social media management consistently, platforms like Facebook and Twitter help businesses establish a relationship with their customers.
Having said all this, there have been certain developments in the recent past which raise questions about the feasibility of starting a new venture in India. As per news reports, about 400 startup applications were received by the inter-ministerial board, of which 189 have been considered, 148 have been asked to submit proper documents and 10 rejected.
Thirty have been asked to give additional information and only one has been approved. Clearly, the response to this new policy has been lukewarm. In another instance, there has been debates about the valuation of Flipkart owing to devaluation from some of the fund houses. And to top it all, startup India has not been able to show the desired results. But at this point we can just hope that all policies and initiatives are just in its teething phases and soon they will overcome its challenges to emerge favourable to the economy.
Furthermore, the Digital India campaign, an ambitious project by the Government of India is a part of a huge agenda which will help at least 10,000 Startups as more and more people in this country are connected to the internet. This campaign will be involved in creating new job opportunities in the near future and it is a boon for the booming eCommerce space.