NEW DELHI: Delhi-National Capital Region (NCR) has witnessed the highest number of startups being founded in the first six months of this year, on the back of its digital ecosystem, government support and infrastructure, including startup accelerators, incubators and enablers.
Between January and June, 109 startups were founded in Delhi-NCR, followed by 63 in Bengaluru and 44 in Mumbai, according to data by venture capital industry tracker Tracxn. Sectors such as edtech, fintech and enterprise applications saw more traction with several start-ups also repurposing their solutions to offer covid-related solutions.
Startups based out of Bengaluru, however, raised $2,436 million, more than their Delhi ($602 million) and Mumbai ($397 million) counterparts in the first half of the year, data showed.
Big-ticket funding deals were in the edtech space with Byju’s leading the pack, valued now at $10.5 billion after raising $100 million Mary Meeker's fund Bond and another $110 million raised by Unacademy from Facebook and General Atlantic.
The new startups from Delhi-NCR include fashion-focused fashinza.com, ramjagenosensor.com, developer of smart sensor for the detection of bacterial infection and antibiotic resistance, cloud-based productivity app marvey.app, owo.in, an app-based platform offering water launched in Gurugram and reezy.in, an online reward-based rental payment software among others.
Bengaluru saw agritech startup farmtheory.in and mitron.tv, a social platform for short videos springing up during this period and also raising funding amidst the pandemic.
Another new Delhi-based app-based parking solutions Park Plus, which offers QR-based contactless-based parking solutions and raised $11 million this year, in a round co-led by Sequoia India and Matrix Partners India.
“For us, Delhi is a great fit for our business both from market as well as talent perspective," says Amit Lakhotia, CEO and Founder, Park Plus. Delhi being the biggest car market in India also helps Park Plus’ business.
The proliferation of startups in Delhi-NCR is also led by the fact that the area, comprising Delhi, Noida and Gurugram, provides a bigger market base and matches Bengaluru on investor ecosystem support, besides being the policy hub, said analysts.
According to a 2019 report by TiE, -NCR is home to more than 7,000 startups. The region has also produced about 13 unicorns like PayTM, Oyo and Zomato, with at least one new unicorn emerging each year since 2013.
Elate Well-being, that focuses on premium well-being services launched in January but had to shut its operations in March due to the lockdown, and later took their services online. “The NCR population is tech savvy and were able to readily transition to online services during the lockdown phase," says Ashutosh Pandey, founder of Elate, that currently offers more than 20 short duration online programs for physical and mental well-being.
Other young startup founders echo similar sentiments about Delhi.
Tanvi Malik and Shivani Poddar, co-founders of fashion house High Street Essentials, that has launched women’s fashion brands like FabAlley and Indya say that “Delhi NCR is home to a throng of angel investors, family offices, and investor networks that help the start-up community with early-stage funding, crucial to scaling and optimising in the first few years of a start-up’s life cycle."
With suitable government and private sector interventions, Delhi-NCR could become one of the top five global start-up hubs, with 12,000 startups, 30 unicorns and a cumulative valuation of about $150 billion by 2025, the TiE report said.