India and its upcoming breed of Internet startups have attracted quite a bit of attention from accelerators and early stage venture capitalists. We have reported over the last few months about the interesting developments that have taken place. We have seen accelerators like The Hatch, GSF, AngelPrime etc. setting up shop and taking startups in to their fold.
An accelerator is now a popular way of nurturing, mentoring and funding a new startup which can change the market for the better or in other words ‘disrupt’ it. The first such accelerator is Y Combinator which introduced the concept of such a program to the world.
In an interview with The Economic Times, Paul Singh of 500 Startups, an accelerator that has funded over 400 startups globally in just 2 years, states that they could be looking at investing in around 30 Indian startups a year! They have already funded some 10 startups in the last 6 months. Some of these startups are Instamojo, Cucumbertown, Trade Briefs and Walletkit. 500 startups gives a check of $50,000 to the selected startups and arranges for follow-on funding depending on the progress.
Paul states that Brazil and India are the new biggest Internet markets. Mobile Internet penetration in India is growing at a rapid pace. There are around 100 million active Internet users. With such a userbase, it is logical to assume that India is going to be the hub of some very good Internet products soon.
However, the challenge here lies in figuring out gaps in the sector. The uniqueness of the Indian demographic and usage is quite challenging to startups. There is also the lack of Internet infrastructure to think about. We need startups in every sector to change how the game is played and in turn establish better and leaner ways of doing things while solving important problems faced by Indians on a daily basis.
Have a interesting idea? You should check 500 startups out.
Website | 500 Startups