The Indian startup story

When we look at big American companies like Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, Virgin etc.; we hear inspiring stories of people making their own destiny. From Bill Gates to Steve Job, everyone has built a product or a service which has changed the course of humanity. Every company was a startup at one stage and they have gone through the curve of ups and downs. A common thing about American Startups is the use of garages as their first office. Major startups in America had its genesis in a small garage. Bill Gates started Microsoft in his father’s garage; and the same is true with Steve Jobs. It has become a natural pattern, where companies have to start from garages.

India has a different story, we don’t have garages; we have 2 BHK flats. Indian entrepreneurs have tried to replicate the American version; but the problem was there was no place to startup. Indian entrepreneurs needed a desi version, 2 bedroom apartment. India is a developing country with upcoming urban cities. It will be a rare case when you find a bungalow or cottage in the heart of the city. Big cities in India like Delhi, Mumbai or Chennai usually have high rising apartment buildings. So in India we don’t call it a garage startup; but a 2 BHK startup. We have many stories of companies using apartments as their first offices.

 photo of startup office

Bangalore is often known as the silicon valley of India. It has been in the radar of multinational companies as well as professionals. The weather as well as the urban culture has always enticed people from all over India to make Bangalore as their destination. The startup ecosystem in India and in particular Bangalore has many stories of 2 BHK flats or apartments as their first offices. It may be a case; When you search for a 2 BHK flat or apartment in Bangalore, chances are there that you may end up landing in a startup office. Some of the big companies in India like Flipkart started in an apartment in Koramangala, a suburb in Bangalore; TaxiForSure, an aggregator for cabs and taxis started in an apartment in JP Nagar. Upcoming startups, Urban Ladder and RedBus have a similar story.

Bangalore has become an incubation centre for startups. Many big companies have started investing in startups. Every month 5 to 10 start-ups are incubated in Bangalore; with the amount of investment pouring in, Bangalore could become the startup capital of the world. With Bangalore, upcoming urban cities like Pune, Ahmedabad could become the hub of startups in India. The government of India has relaxed the rules for FDI investments, which has led to the creation of a pool of investment firms backed by foreign investors. With the amount of human resources that India has; there will be an upsurge of startups in India. Even reputed companies of Indian origin have started investing in startups. With angel investors coming in, the bottleneck of investment will be solved. In the near future, the Cult of 2 BHK startups can replace the cult of garage startups.

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