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'Great times for start-ups'

Published by Metro India News on October 02, 2015 00:33:43 AM

A significant event was hosted by Nasscom coinciding with visit of PM to Silicon Valley - The India-US Startup Konnect Programme. The objective was to inspire thousands of startups and create a multitude of connections. Forty Indian start-ups were also showcased at the exhibition for the Silicon Valley ecosystem to understand and appreciate the momentum for quality startups in India. These startups came from different segments of the industry like Agriculture, Healthcare, Energy, etc, which have significant impact on poorest of poor in India, said, BVR Mohan Reddy, founder and executive chairman, Cyient and chairman Nasscom.

“India took 10 years to reach the first 100M Internet users. The next 100M took 3 years and the last 100M took less than a year. We are in exponential growth in India,” he said.

Another way you can gauge opportunity is by looking at India’s share of large privately funded startup with a market cap of over $1 billion, also called Unicorns. Out of 138 global unicorns, India now has seven of them which is a market share of 5 per cent. This was significant, for it encouraged Silicon Valley venture capital companies and mentors to look more closely into India startup community and also for Silicon Valley companies to look for talent and backend in India. Indian start-ups got an opportunity to look for funding and also partnering with valley professionals.

Nasscom message at the event was that India is open and connected. India is deeply connected to Silicon Valley through its diaspora. Indians are six per cent of the population but accounts for 15 per cent of the startups created. The Indian subcontinent is also deeply connected to Silicon Valley given successful companies like Facebook, Dropbox and LinkedIn are equally popular in India as in US. The key drivers are large English speaking population and open policies of the government for international business.

He said, “We are seeing Silicon Valley startups launch in the US first and then launch in India as a second market. There are still a few challenges and Nasscom is working closely with the government to ease tax law around start-ups, creating a fund of funds for seed investments, skilling India, etc. Once the above barriers are removed, we will see a six lane highway between India and Silicon Valley.”