‘The startup India, stand up India’ campaign by our esteemed prime minister, Mr. Narendra Modi has set a new wave of entrepreneurship encouragement in the nation. In recent research done by us, we estimate the amount of funding to analytics startup in 2015 to be in tune of $260M.
Being the inquisitive noses that we are, and as a magazine of the analytics community, we decided to find out how this initiative will affect our friends from the Indian analytics industry. We asked four common questions to some of the key players including startups from the analytics community, for their views and found some very interesting answers. Have a read below and do not forget to leave your views on the initiative!
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Q: What do you have to say on this, being an analytics focused company?
Jaydeep Deshpande (Regional Marketing Manager, India at Qlik) enunciated that, of $18 billion pumped into Indian startups during 2010 to 2015, $9 billion was invested in 2015 alone! Clearly, there has never been a better time for start-ups in India. Thus, one of the most important aspects for startups is to “compete on analytics” as it becomes absolutely critical for the startups to stay ahead of the curve by engaging in data driven possibilities and by marrying new technologies right from the inception stage. In fact, he strongly believes that this initiative will help create a stronger ecosystem to foster innovation and startups in India.
Likewise, Ashwin Mittal (President, Blueocean Market Intelligence), responded that, ‘Startup India – Stand up India’ will encourage many new ventures leveraging digital media, thus indirectly creating opportunity for data mining. Since digital platforms generate huge volumes of structured and unstructured data as well as transactional or operational data, it creates an opportunity for analytics service providers like Blueocean to step in and help these entrepreneurs focus on their core business while providing them with core decision support.
Furthermore, Ambiga Dhiraj (COO, Mu Sigma) believes that there are at least two opportunities for startups in analytics. The first is in serving the Indian market: Large Indian companies, and the public sector, are lagging their global counterparts in the use of analytics for decision support. This initiative could well serve as a market opportunity for new startups. Secondly, there is room for new products to serve vertical opportunities globally across many industries, and also horizontal opportunities such as the Internet of Things.
On the other hand, Anurag Shah (CEO and Co-Founder of Aureus Analytics), articulated that even though the overall plan sounds very promising, the execution of this initiative will be critical, as the public procurement for startups is currently referring only to the manufacturing industry and technology startups like theirs will not benefit much from this. On the brighter side, areas like patent rebates will be of great help.
Q: Has this initiative helped or affected your business in any way?
Shivakumar Shankar (Managing Director, India, LexisNexis Risk Solutions) finds the campaign an incubator for good ideas, talent, innovation and economic growth. However, he said that it has not impacted their business directly. Since, they constantly look for opportunities to work with companies that complement their business strategy through a partnership, this initiative could prove to be a positive for future growth.
Similarly, Jatin Sawhney (General Manager, Information Services, Team Computers Pvt. Ltd) believes that this initiative has opened up many opportunities for them to cross-sell and up-sell their product and services.
In addition, Jaydeep Deshpande (Regional Marketing Manager, India at Qlik) commented that as a leader in visual analytics, they will be happy to help startups grow fast as they have been associated with organizations that have understood the need to marry analytics to their strategy and are, consequently, on a fast track growth trajectory.
Q: Do you think it will actually boost the analytics startup community in India?
This was a critical question as it was directed towards the analytics community as a whole. We cannot agree more with Jatin Sawhney (General Manager, Information Services, Team Computers Pvt. Ltd) who said that the startups are growing at an accelerated pace and with them the analytics community will grow. With many new investments coming in, it’s going to change the way markets function today in India. With everyone wanting to strive toward growth, data crunching and number crunching shall play a vital role in attracting new technologies and talent.
Furthermore, Sony Joy (Founder & CEO, Chillr) remarked that analytics startups can focus on getting more data samples before arriving at insights which could change the way various industries function. Looking at recent acquisitions in India, data mining and analytics will play a very important role in developing sustainable business models in the near future.
While Ashwin Mittal (President, Blueocean Market Intelligence) added that, digital platforms have seen tremendous growth in the last few years and even existing large enterprises are looking at the digital channels as new business channels to complement their traditional approach. With a wider proliferation of internet through mobile devices, huge volumes of transactional and customer profiling, usage and behavioral data is being generated every second across India. All this data needs to be classified and analyzed and then presented to the decision makers. Thus, it will be a big opportunity for analytics service providers.
Disagreeing, Anurag Shah, (CEO and Co-Founder, Aureus Analytics) claimed that there is nothing specifically for the Analytics focused startups, the overall impetus to the startup ecosystem will have its positive impact. Although, analytics and data science are a critical component of all decision making teams, across every organization and every industry. Maybe with the government sponsored incubators and mentoring in place, it will allow companies of all sizes to experiment with analytics and experience the benefits.
Jaydeep Deshpande (Regional Marketing Manager, India at Qlik) anticipates that newer domains such as Big Data, Open Data, Analytics, Data Insights and Visualization are all opening up lucrative opportunities for Indian startup companies. In 2014, NASSCOM had released a report in partnership with Blue Ocean Market Intelligence, predicting the growth of analytics market in India to reach about $2.3 billion by the end of 2017-18. Thus, this campaign will provide an open platform opportunity for local tech companies to integrate best-of-breed solutions, innovate new products and invent solutions for similar global demands. Startups play a critical role in spurring innovation, and India provides a very conducive and vibrant environment for entrepreneurs, especially with a plethora of opportunities around this initiative.
Q: Any new laws that you think will affect the analytics startup community?
Shivakumar Shankar (Managing Director, India, LexisNexis Risk Solutions) speculated that India is ranked 130th in ease of doing business by World Bank; he further added that, under the new scheme measures undertaken by the government such as 10,000 crore fund for startups, Single point registration, Self-certification, Ease in filing patent applications, Exemption of tax for three years and Credit guarantee funds for startups would help an individual set up their startups in a smooth and efficient manner.
Moreover, Ambiga Dhiraj (COO, Mu Sigma) conjectured that new investment capital, and simpler rules to set up new businesses, will raise the tide for all startups, and not just in analytics. As we have a critical mass of analytics talent in our country and all other things being equal, this program will add momentum to Made in India startups.
Likewise, Sony Joy (Founder & CEO, Chillr) appreciated the government’s efforts to bring about a change in the way companies are incorporated and ensuring necessary compliance is enforced. Besides promoting an open and free market economy, easing the rules of starting companies will go a long way towards bridging the gap between small and medium size businesses.
We would like conclude by thanking our contributors for this article: Ambiga Dhiraj COO, Mu Sigma, Jatin Sawhney, General Manager, Information Services, Team Computers Pvt. Ltd, Sony Joy, Founder & CEO, Chillr, Ashwin Mittal, President, Blueocean Market Intelligence, Anurag Shah, CEO & Co-Founder, Aureus Analytics, Shivakumar Shankar, Managing Director, India, LexisNexis Risk Solutions, Jaydeep Deshpande, Regional Marketing Manager, India at Qlik for their valuable inputs and insights on the campaign.