With Prime Minister Narendra Modi announcing to celebrate January 16 as the National Startup Day, the meteoric rise of desi entrepreneurs in the past couple of years, which made global headlines, has received a tremendous boost.
Fresh data reveals that India produced 46 unicorns (companies with over $1 billion valuation) in 2021 alone, which raised a whopping $42 billion, up from $11. 5 billion in 2020.
According to a latest report by Orios Venture Partners, the country now has 90 unicorns — from ShareChat to Cred and from Meesho to upGrad — with new ones across the spectrum joining the coveted unicorn club faster than ever. India also emerged as the third largest startup ecosystem in the world in 2021, after the US and China, according to Hurun Research Institute.
India’s unicorns are currently worth more than $170 billion, and counting.
Modi said that like small businesses, which are the spine of India’s economy, startups are turning out to be the game changers. According to Satish Shukla, co-founder of automation and robotics firm Addverb Technologies, the Indian startup ecosystem has come a very long way and has matured a lot.
“We can see startups getting listed on the Indian bourses amid a slew of accessible VC/PE funds for the Indian startups. Several talented people are coming back to India to start on their own or work with startups, thereby reversing the brain drain process,” Shukla said.
Right from the inception of ‘Startup India’ in 2016, a slew of measures has been taken by the government like pushing for digital mode of payments, 100 per cent tax rebate on profit for a period of 3 years for eligible startups, waiver of norms for PSUs to promote procurement by startups and also encouraging PSUs to fund and nurture relevant startups.
India has seen four ‘decacorns’ to date -Flipkart, Paytm, Byju’s and OYO. Currently, India has the third-largest startup ecosystem in the world, with nearly 60,000 startups.