India’s coveted startup club of unicorns- firms valued at $1 billion or more, is growing faster than ever. 2019 alone has produced over half a dozen unicorns so far, with a new one just last week.
“India’s FAANG equivalent is what I call the pioneer unicorn acronym – FOOPS (Flipkart, Ola, Oyo, PayTM, Swiggy). State of today’s startup ecosystem has a lot to do with efforts of these early unicorns, startups which bore significant market development costs,” said Radha Kizhanattam
Now add to this hugely favorable macro changes, capital supply and the maturing consumer, and you have a growing unicorn tribe.
** Macro: Startups can now easily and cost efficiently reach, acquire and serve the next billion consumers thanks to near ubiquitous and affordable access to data/other infrastructure, platforms like Facebook, WhatsApp, PayTM and government led technology platforms (AADHAAR, UPI etc.)
** Capital: Investors such as Tiger Global, Softbank etc. with deeper pockets, riskier appetites, patient timelines now chasing opportunities in India on the back of early successes (Flipkart exit). Their confidence also comes from parallels on timing on trends and growth of equivalents in other economies, potentially betting on riding a similar trend in India. This in turn leading to more capital available at earlier stages given there is more visibility into potentially meaningful exits.
** Maturing consumer: Today’s consumer is digital. Today’s consumer is willing to experiment. The unicorns till date have addressed basic broken issues around better access to food, stay, commute and commerce. With the maturing consumer, tomorrow’s unicorns are innovating on the next level – solving for better education, quality and affordable healthcare and whole host of financial products.