A slew of Indian startups on Sunday hailed Prime Minister’s National Startup Day initiative, saying that the commemoration will not only encourage the country’s innovators and young entrepreneurs but also help boost global investors’ confidence in their contribution to economic growth.
In a virtual meeting with over 160 leading startups on Saturday, Modi said that like small businesses, which are the spine of India’s economy, startups are turning out to be the game changers.
“We have played a small role in inspiring new-age founders to think beyond existing categories and take up challenges that solve real social problems, even if it requires creating a new category altogether. ‘Businesses with a cause’ is critical to continue writing the great Indian startup story,” Chitresh Sharma, CEO and Co-founder of fintech platform Refyne, told IANS.
“Indian startups have been on a rapid growth trajectory and will continue to gain investor confidence across the globe as is visible in the influx of investments seen lately,” Sharma added.
India produced 46 unicorns (companies with over $1 billion valuation) in 2021.
Harvard University professor Viney Sawhney, an expert in private equity, venture capital (VC) and investment banking, described the Indian venture capital (VC) scene as stunning.
“India is not a new territory for the US-based VC investors. The country has seen a dramatic escalation in dollar terms that has been invested in the last year-and-a-half. The growth doubled as far as unicorn count is concerned and that I think has spurred and attracted a lot of attention here in the US,” he said on Saturday during a fireside chat organised by Agility Ventures, one of the leading angel investors networks in the country.
Professor Sawhney informed that India had surpassed a record level of investments in the year 2021, touching an all-time high of almost about $42 billion.
“India deserves to get a lot more than $42-billion in the VC space. The potential for India is simply stunning and we have not even scratched the surface as yet of what is yet to come,” he noted.
Agility Ventures said it has received approvals from the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) for an angel fund with a total corpus Rs 450 crore ($60 million).
Nirmit Parikh, CEO and Founder of leading jobs and professional networking platform apna.co, said that the entire nation is celebrating the innovations brought by startups.
“We are certain that India will become the innovation capital of the world in the next few years,” he told IANS.
Sachin Chopra, Co-Founder and CEO of lifestyle and sustainable mobility brand, Ninety One, said that the move will help emerging entrepreneurs in the digital space, e-commerce and innovative business ideas across sectors.
According to Shruti Aggarwal, Co-founder of fintech platform Stashfin, the National Startup Day is a testimony of the government’s focus on supporting the startup ecosystem.
“2022 is going to be a golden year for unicorns and we hope to create 100 plus more unicorns this year. This decade is pegged to be ‘techade’ as well as ‘Fintechade’ and we must celebrate the achievements and power of the new-age startups,” she said.