China is a major provider of funding and control of many Indian startups. In 2015, Alibaba invested in Paytm through its affiliate Ant Financial. In 2017, Tencent took major stakes in Flipkart and Ola.
Japan is also a serious provider of funding in India. Japanese giant Softbank has invested over US$8B in startups in the country, with a goal of $10B by 2024 that now looks surprisingly conservative.
As a result of this “triangle”, India is currently home to 26 startups valued over US$1B.
Oyo Hotels and Homes is raising US$1.5 billion from founder Ritesh Agarwal, SoftBank Group Corp., and other investors as it expands into foreign markets such as the U.S. and Europe.
Agarwal, 25, will spend $700 million to buy new shares in the company.
Indian edtech startup CollegeDekho, which helps students connect with prospective colleges and keep track of exams, has raised US$8 million in a Series B round.
Last October, Indian e-commerce startup Snapdeal raised US$627 million at a valuation of over $2 billion. In the same month, India’s Uber-style taxi service, Ola, raised $210 million, while being valued at over $1 billion in under three years.
India’s largest online retailer and version of Amazon is Flipkart which recently raised another US$700 million at over a $11 billion valuation.
India’s online restaurant guide, Zomato, recently bought US-based Urbanspoon for over $50 million—one of the largest acquisitions by an Indian startup.
India’s Silicon Valley – Both Koramangala in Bangalore and Hiranandani Powai (pictured below) in Mumbai – are becoming thriving ecosystems to nurture startups in India.
Things are changing in modern India – and the “triangle” of India, China and Japan is playing a big role in the change.
Time to look again?