Bright Beginnings: Indian Startups in 2018
A recent study by The National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) pitched India as the third largest start-up hot spot in the world for technology. In fact, the number of startups in India is projected to quadruple from about 3,000 in 2014 to approximately 11,500 by the year 2020. India is experiencing a boom where start-ups from various sectors ranging from agriculture to healthcare to technology are flourishing. These ventures are wholeheartedly being supported by an array of initiatives by the Government of India as well as various educational organisations.
Government ventures such as the Start Up India campaign aim to alter the landscape of Indian entrepreneurial ventures by converting the nation into a country of ‘job creators instead of a nation of job seekers’. Since the commencement of this venture, a record number of companies have registered, been recognised and moreover, received funding. Apart from this, the Self-Employment and Talent Utilization (SETU), a flagship project under the Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) has attempted to encourage a climate of innovation through several hubs and centres that are influential platforms for the generation of pioneering ideas.
Furthermore, there is an increased interest in roping in educational institutions to ignite and nurture young entrepreneurs. A good example is the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) that issued a directive to create a certain percentage of self-employed individuals among their fresh graduates across national universities. Their goal is to create a framework that would help mentor and promote these entrepreneurs to the next stage by providing a support network that would link them to the necessary facilities.
In addition to e-commerce, the finance technological sector also enjoyed a prosperous environment, with digital payment companies reaping high dividends. Not to be left behind, the field of Artificial Intelligence (AI) has been garnering the interest of international tech giants like Google, Facebook and IBM who believe in the larger societal implications of research into the ability of computers to think strategically.
The AI sector has also attracted certain unlikely investors in India. Niki.ai, the conversational chatbot was successful in raising an undisclosed amount from Ratan Tata. Director S.S. Rajamouli, of ‘Baahubali’ fame, and producer Shobu Yarlagadda turned technology investors for the first time. By investing in Consumex, a start-up promising an immersive experience they envisioned the global success of Muse Wearables.
With a fortunate environment for growth, advanced initiatives and support of investors the future of startups in India are packing in a powerful punch that are sure to have a lasting impact in 2018.
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