`More support, mentoring needed for startups in Tier II and Tier III cities’

Our Bureau | | Updated on: Jan 21, 2022

India must aim for at least 75 unicorns in the 75-week period to the 75th anniversary of independence, says Goyal

There is a lot of potential in startups in Tier II & Tier III cities that needs to be tapped, Commerce & Industry Minister Piyush Goyal has said.

“If we give them more support and proper mentoring, they could also play a much greater role in the years to come,” he said at the launch of a Nasscom report on `Indian Tech Startup Ecosystem’ on Friday.

India among top 3

Indian startups did phenomenally well in 2021 raising a total equity investment of $24.1 billion which was more than twice the amount raised in the pre-pandemic year of 2019, the report stated. More than half the equity investments have come from the 47 new unicorns that were established in the country in 2021, pushing India amongst the top three countries in terms of number of unicorns.

Goyal pointed out that India had added 43 unicorns in 45 weeks, since the start of ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’ in March last year. “Let us aim for at least 75 unicorns in this 75-week period up to the 75th anniversary of Independence,” he said.

Startup nation

The minister also said that 2021 was a year that defied all odds, and 2022 will be the breakthrough year, in which India will unlock immense exponential value. “India at 100 will be renowned as a startup nation,” Goyal said adding that the potential in Tier II & Tier III cities needed to be fully tapped.

Last week, the Minister, in a meeting with venture capital (VC) funds, had also asked them to focus more on startups from tier-II and tier-III cities.

As per the Economic Survey of 2018-19, of the over 16,500 recognised start-ups (as of March 1, 2019), nearly half were from Tier II and Tier III cities. Tier II cities like Ahmedabad, Chandigarh, Dehradun, Pondicherry and Pune have a population of around one million, whereas minor cities with population less than one million like Madurai, Baroda, Nashik and Trichy are termed as Tier III cities. “These cities display immense potential in all fields due to inherent advantages like ample availability of land and skilled labour,” the survey pointed out.

Published on January 21, 2022
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