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2016

Inside the boardroom of NASSCOM headquarters, takes place a serious brainstorming.

Participants - NASSCOM Products Team, NASSCOM Industry Research Team, and Zinnov (our process partner). A total of ~500 companies being screened and scrutinized on more than 30 business and technology parameters. Since I was already working on the Start-up Report - 2016 Edition - it became intriguing for me to draw synergies between our report and the EMERGE 50 Analysis. Some of the key findings are given below:

 

Tier 1 cities harbor maximum software product companies - tier 2,3 steadily making their visibility

Although Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Bangalore, and Hyderabad occupied more that 70% of the total application pool, companies from tier 2 cities were also becoming noticeable. Jaipur, Indore, Kochi, Coimbatore, Visag, Trivandrum, Amritsar, and Chandigarh - together accounting for 6% of the application pool. With >13 states having already established start-up policy frameworks, this number is bound to rise in the next couple of years.

 

B2B businesses are becoming prominent in India

65% of the applicants offered B2B solutions. In a country with 1.3 billion customers, with huge scope and opportunities for B2C companies, B2B software product firms are also making their presence felt - most of them catering to both Indian and global clients. B2B product start-ups (as per our start-up report) occupied 1/4th of the total start-up funding and their funding went up by 18-22% YoY.

 

Big data/analytics, cloud, and enterprise solutions are the most popular, IoT catching up fast

Of the top 50 companies recognized and awarded at the NPC, ~50% of the companies offered analytics solutions. 20% of them offered IoT solutions - in the HealthTech, CleanTech, EnergyTech, and Robotics. Top technologies as per our start-up report would be Big Data/Analytics, Cloud, IoT, ML/AI (~750 start-ups in India).

 

Product companies are exploring global markets

>80% of the total applicants had some form of global focus, highlighting that global scaling is on the top of their mind, prompting them to create world-class software products.

 

Finally, I will leave you with the list of the top 10 companies recognized by EMERGE 50 Awards.

Company Name
CityProductDescription
AVR EdGE Networks Pvt. Ltd.BangaloreHIREalchemyHIREalchemy is an end-to-end AI driven solution for workforce transformation
Cardiac Design LabsBangaloreMIRCaMMIRCaM is a single front line device for advanced cardiac diagnosis with intelligence which provides real time analysis and generates instant alarms on detection of problems informing a doctor ahead of time, thereby enhancing patient care and safety.
Ducere Technologies Pvt. Ltd.HyderabadLechal FootwearLechal is the one of the world’s first interactive haptic footwear - that helps in navigation and monitors fitness
Hansel.ioBangaloreHansel.ioA toolkit for software developers which allows them to fix crashes and dynamically communicate with users
iFuture RoboticsBangaloreArk RobotBuilds technology inspection systems (mobile robots) for small scale manufacturing industries
Indix Internet India Private LimitedChennaiIndix APIIndix Product API provides RESTful, programmatic access to offers and catalog information, and easily integrates with ecommerce platforms, business systems, and product information management systems.
LogicLadder TechnologiesGurgaonEnergyLogicIQEnergyLogicIQ makes energy data simple to acquire, understand and act upon. Using machine learning technology that turns facilities into conscious facilities that learn from and respond to every energy wastage.
Oslabs Technology (India) Pvt. Ltd.MumbaiIndus OSIndus OS is the world's first regional operating system made for smartphones in India & other emerging markets
Razorpay Software Private LimitedBangaloreRazorpay ServicesOffers developer-friendly APIs and hassle-free integration for fast, affordable, and secure way for merchants, schools, ecommerce, and other companies to accept payments online
SirionLabsGurgaonSirionA SaaS platform that helps technology buyers and sellers effectively manage costs and risks associated with complex service agreements

 

As you can see, Indian software product companies and tech start-ups are beginning to offer sophisticated technologies and platforms, foraying both locally and globally. Do share your thoughts today on how can these companies scale fast and sustainably.

We shared a few insights from our latest report on startups here and here on funding. Given that the report is extensive, here are a few more interesting datapoints from the report that you may find interesting.

 

First, accelerators/ incubators have seen over 40% YoY growth in 2016. Impetus from government and corporates have made this possible. Around 30 new academic incubators established under the ‘Start-up India Stand-up India’ initiative. Most of the incubators are located in Mumbai, Bangalore and NCR, as are the startups.

 

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Incubators/Accelerators differ in the type of support and mentorship provided. Here is an overview, see more in our startup report.

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We will share more insights and simplify the report findings. Stay tuned. We also have a special report coming out in accelerators/ incubators in a month. Get the details of that too on the Community.

Shekhar Kirani, Partner, Accel Partners in conversation with Nishant Rao, Global COO, Freshdesk & Sudheer Koneru, Founder & CEO, Zenoti

 

SaaS is a rage. It can create “corporate happiness” - helps companies engage better with customers, and ease CEOs’ burden.

 

Horizontal SaaS can solve challenges across industry verticals and purely from that standpoint, the product has to be phenomenal. The targeted market is huge, so the pain points have to be identified quite accurately. Vertical SaaS is specific to a particular industry, and usually offers end-to-end solutions.

 

When should one go Horizontal? If the markets are established and one wants to create a major impact, then Horizontal is a good option. It is important to nail a use case, and subsequently develop solutions for other industries (with necessary tweaks) to solve their challenges in a function.

 

Vertical? It is ideal when one seeks out a certain scale and is passionate about solving a particular industry’s challenges. Or even all of it. Often, deep domain expertise is associated with Vertical SaaS. Once you reach a critical mass in a particular vertical, it might be a good idea to explore horizontally.

 

Some popular horizontal SaaS products are in the areas of CRM, Employee Engagement, Communities & Collaboration, and Inventory Management among others. To build sophisticated products in these areas the investment required is often large. The initial focus should be to acquire the first 10 customers. Initially, it is prudent to keep a narrow focus and then build scale based on success. If one is able to secure a marquee brand, then so much the better. This will provide the much needed momentum.

For years together, NASSCOM Product Conclave has been the breeding ground for ideas and collaboration, bringing together various stakeholders of the technology product ecosystem. From the last couple of years, NPC has shown a strong focus towards start-ups and innovation. In line with this focus, and the rising interconnectivity with other global ecosystems, one of the sessions at NPC focused around the ‘French Tech Ecosystem and Initiatives’. Being a technology analyst and an ardent follower of the Indian tech start-up landscape, I got intrigued enough to attend the session.

Some of my learnings of the French landscape:Picture3.pngSome of the points to think over:

  • Although India stands 3rd globally in the number of start-ups, we have 140+ incubators/accelerators in India – less than France. Given India’s scale and growth, is this enough?
  • The investments by French govt. is 4.5 times what is promised under India’s Start-up India and Stand-up Policies. Again, is this enough?
  • Maximum applications to French Tech Ticket flowing in from India – could mean many things – Indian entrepreneurs looking for global markets because A) they find it hard to start-up in India or B) they are late entrants in categories which are already mature in India like eCommerce. Whatever the reason, is there a scope and possibility to make Indian start-up environment even more conducive to retain talent and companies, and by conducive I mean technologically, environmentally, and socially?

Our start-up ecosystem is maturing like never before, but we continue to need more impetus and push from various stakeholders of the ecosystem – impetus in the form of funding, structured mentoring, and ease of doing business in India. With the hope that the French start-up ecosystem makes its mark globally and flourishes as one of the key hubs in Europe, I also bring to notice that India can’t become complacent on any front – we should continue being aggressive and take the imperative of becoming the ‘Silicon Valley of the East’. Can we?

We shared a few insights from our latest report on startups here. Given that the report is extensive, here are a few more interesting datapoints from the report that you may find interesting.

 

First, we told you India is third in terms of number of #startups Here is the bigger picture on where other countries stand.

 

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Second, coming to cities from countries, how many of you knew that cities prove conducive to specific sort of startups? For example, Hyderabad gets infotech, Pune gets health and Chennai dominated B2B start-ups in India.

 

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Third, let’s come to funding. Despite subdued funding, 6-10% YoY growth in the number of start-ups funded.

 

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Here are the leading investors in India

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How much funding went to B2B and B2C startups?

 

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At which stages were most start-ups funded?

 

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We will share more insights and simplify the report findings. Stay tuned.