DSPN has taken a great initiative on behalf of local digital startups, but how strong is the Indian start-up ecosystem when it comes to facilitating expansion and growth?
In my humble opinion, in India, there is a misconception that Start-up ecosystem consists of start-ups, investors and mentors only. This has become a huge ecosystem in itself and has been driven by multiple incubators and accelerators. The ecosystem clearly misses out a few of the main components: The Industry connection, branding and global visibility for the start-ups & its founders. It is my opinion that these factors play a significant role in the success and growth of start-ups. That is why, DSPN focuses on five pillars to support the start-ups: Funding, Brand Recognition, Global Visibility, Mentoring and Networking.
If there is one aspect missing in the Indian startup space that you feel can make a difference, what would that be?
Indian start-ups are very focused on their current challenges and issues. Rightly so, because that’s what is driving their immediate business aims and goals. But this being a very short-sighted goal as there is no long-term vision because of two main reasons:
(a) The start-ups do not have the knowledge/vision to think about the future.
(b) The start-up founders do not have the connection or the network to get any guidance on what the future looks like for their business and industry.
The current set of incubators/accelerators do not have the expertise in helping start-ups in this space. Eg they do not help them in building roadmaps, whether business, technology, and customer roadmap. Support for their futuristic vision can make a huge difference to Indian start-ups.
How do you see the future of India’s Start-up Ecosystem?
Startup ecosystems in India have tremendous potential. There is a great deal of diversity in the Indian start-up ecosystem, with booming industries ranging from fintech, e-commerce, and software to supply chain and logistics. Global investors and private equity firms have been actively participating in the ecosystem since the pandemic hit. Over $12 billion has been raised by domestic start-ups in the first three months of 2022, setting a new trajectory for India’s entrepreneurial journey. Hence, the start-up ecosystem in India is going to drive innovation for the world. The potential is huge and so is the growth.
What would be your one piece of advice/tip to all start-ups?
To the founders of digital start-ups, I advise remaining focused on the innovation and the outcomes they are looking to achieve for their customers. The path to success is to follow excellence. It’s not the end of the story when you get funded, that’s just the beginning. As a start-up, they will need a lot of support on being mentored in areas such as human resources, finance, marketing, etc. and also on building their own brand. Furthermore, the start-ups must get a technical roadmap for their future, a one year, three year and a five year roadmap, which will help them to think beyond their current challenges. They can surely count on engageai.digital for help!