Happy Independence DayTomorrow the world’s biggest democracy will be celebrating its 69th Independent year. India and its people have come a long way since 1947-from CHARKA to being amongst the STARTUP Nations of the globe. There is a lot to be thought about, plenty to look back to; but most importantly, there’s a world full expectations that is waiting in the future. On one side, India tops the list of fastest developing nations, wherein on the other end there are problems like poverty, extreme population and unemployment which are still haunting generations and have been the basic issues which are unsolved since achieving freedom.

The last year was a benchmark one for India both on political and professional grounds. The country saw one of the biggest power-flips in many years. The general elections held last summer was no less than a freedom fight for the ‘common man’ (no pun intended). However, the voice of the voters sprung up and people’s decision had come out clean and clear- A MUCH NEEDED CHANGE.

India @ Work:
On the business grounds, India was experiencing her toughest period in a while; all business vertical were ill and alling and every profession or a professional required a breather. However, something was happening that was good yet was unnoticed during the initial stages. A new culture was imported (of course from the US) and was getting in-roads. It is today popularly known as the “STARTUP CULTURE”.

Talking of Startups in India; it’s quite an irony that we have many companies and deals taking off on one side and on the other end, the awareness campaign for toilets-just as half the country’s population don’t have an access to one. It might shock the one’s who aren’t aware of such unbelievable campaigns that have started not too long; but the bottom line stays, “every nation needs constant developments”.

How is India Changing?
Today, on the eve of Independence Day I intend to look forward to a bigger, brighter future where there’s an improved life quality. India has been spoken around the world for several matters (good and bad) yet the latest happens to be the Startup work culture which is growing at an unknown speed. All expected bars have been surpassed in the past few years and things have come up better than expected (at least till now).

Flipkart, Snapdeal, Askme, Zomato and many more are pinned up poster brands of the Indian E-Commerce industry. These are the main companies which began with the startup business ideas in a country which otherwise was just known to be a land of farmers and snake charmers.

In the meanwhile, India can be proud of its citizens who have turned out to be identities to reowned IT companies along with other business categories. The newly announced CEO of Google, Sundar Pichai is the latest professional to join the bandwagon. IT and manpower talents from India is rated to be world-class as they are always on demand for regularly.

All this is possible due to the massive investments flowing in from all over, especially from the developed countries that have already tasted the success of startups and view potential in India. Amazon is one such giant e-commerce brand that has taken several steps into the Indian industry and has pumped investments worth billions.

Startup Culture in India vs. Others:
According to market research reports on startup work culture, India still have lots to prove as it stands at the 4th position in the worldwide rankings in terms of startups. India currently has around 3,100 startups that are operational. In comparison the US is way ahead of everyone on the list which about more than 41,000 startups. UK is a distant second in the group with 3,500 startups closely followed by Israel at 3,300 firms.

The future projections for startups in India is even more better as there is an estimate of 11,500 startup business units in the country by the end of 2020. These are likely to cover all business categories such as IT, education, healthcare and agriculture. Several reputed companies are interested in funding projects in India-corporates like Google, Infosys, Microsoft are few to name. Top investment companies from around the world such as Softbank,
Sequoia Capital,
Microsoft Ventures,
Goldman Sachs,
Tiger Global Management,
Polaris Partners,
Benzo Expenditions,
Comcast Ventures,
500 Startups and many more are keenly watching the industry and planning their moves accordingly.

The same study indicates that the average valuation of Indian startups for the period 2010-2014 was recorded at $2.3 million wherein the same was around $4.2 million in the US. According to a high management official from Google India, there is ought to be at least 15 startup firms in the country which would have scaled up to $1 billion or above in 2020.

The Downsides and the ways to bounce back:
In an era where Indians are demanded for their skills and India is planning progress at high speeds, it doesn’t even find a place on the list of MOST INNOVATIVE COUNTRIES. This is the state when Bangalore features at the 19th position on the list of global hi-tech cities. Hence, one would safely say that India is dealing with a mixed bag when the startups are considered.

With cities like Hyderabad and Bangalore featuring as IT hubs of the nation, yet only 3 million out of the 1,2+ billion work under the tech sector. As said, half of the citizens find it tough to access a toilet in a country which has the highest literacy rate in the world. 2/3rd of the total Indian population lives at an expenditure less than $2 per day.

To top them all, basic amenities such as water supply, electricity, infrastructure and other primary needs are in a very bad state. However, there are severe efforts to get them to a decent track but all these will take time.

India is ranked at 142nd spot in ease of doing business by NASSCOM


5 major problems that are hurdles in the Indian Startup Industry:

Venture Capitalist is a MUST for Startups-
Business people always look for investors who can inject money. Most of them are still not ready to take the “monetary risk”. This should change as quick as possible.

Follow the HERD-
Even after starting up with the unusual work culture of operating Startups, many entrepreneurs are trying to follow (COPY) the successful stories. It is important to understand that no two businesses can be the same and create a path of the own.

Silicon Valley is the Gateway to Startups… or is it?-
People in India just go crazy when you say that you have been to the Silicon Valley. They start talking about all the business information that they must have gathered in their lifetime. We Indian must make up our minds and work hard to create the INDIAN SILICON VALLEY…which is not far away, not at all.

Companies don’t care to create a business culture-
Most of the companies started in India fail because they just run behind sales and profits right from the day-1. There’s no value or thought for traction, unlike building it in the US and elsewhere.

There need to efforts in creating a suitable work culture that goes beyond monetary profits. Sustainability is a big issue with Indian businesses, in order to change the scene new businesses must think for the long run rather than fast money making ideas which most often prove temporary.

Indians still have to strive hard to make a billion dollar company-
Due to the weaken value of rupee and the constant growth in competition, it is very tough to scale a business to a billion dollar worth. However, the chances have brightened as compared to the past, yet clear planning and execution is required which is at present missing in most business units.

All said; it remains to be seen how well and ‘firm’ do we progress as a nation in the upcoming years amidst the socio, cultural and political disagreements. Until then, here’s wishing every Indian HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!!!