Since jingle bells are running loud this time of the year, we identify some essential developments, which if materialised – will become christmas gifts for our startups. These developments come in the light of significant government measures like ‘Startup India and Stand Up India’ which recognises entrepreneurial engagements at the highest policy levels. However, to put it in the words of Robert Frost, there is still “miles to go, before we sleep”. This journey, will be successful only if integrated efforts by all the stakeholders see the desirable dawn of the day.
Easing Of ‘Ease Of Doing Business’ In India
The Government of India and its policies negatively affects the startup ecosystem. Out of 189 economies, India ranks at a dismal 142 in terms of ease of doing business. Policy initiatives that improves this discouraging figure will directly become a motivating factor for mushrooming of new entrepreneurs of India. Being ranked at 142 also suggests that India is currently entangled in a web of complex law, rules and regulations that act as speed breakers to the growth of indigenous businesses. Significant provisions for startups in the Budget session in February, 2016, can very well be an encouraging christmas gift for startups in advance.
Legal Framework supportive of startup evolution: The legal framework of the country, if made conducive to startup growth and development -so much so that they face little legal clashes, can not only speed up startup penetration, but also ensure better presence in terms of productivity and development. Surprisingly, the government is yet to define the term ‘online marketplace’ or explicitly mention what constitutes retail and wholesale trading on such platforms, making the legal area for startups highly complex and confusing.
Easier Insurance Norms: As reported by ET, entrepreneurs who want to start an online venture to sell or compare insurance products face stringent regulations. The entrepreneur has to first apply for a licence from India’s Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority and have a minimum net worth of Rs 10 lakh.Since 2011, only seven startups have managed to get themselves registered, including AccurateQuotes, a part of PolicyBazaar.com, MyInsuranceClub.com, policymantra. com and insuringindia.com.
Faster Internet Services
While mobile and Internet reach is growing in India, there is still miles to go when it comes efficient connectivity. We still have a long way to go when it comes to broadband or mobile internet connectivity in every nook and corner of the nation. At a disappointing average internet speed of 2.0 Mbps, we provide the slowest internet speed in entire Asia-Pacific and currently rank 115th internationally in terms of average internet speed. It’s no secret Internet connectivity is the lifeline of any startup, and when speed is that slow, slower will be emergence of startup stories. Any sliver of a measure done in this regard can play the role of Santa Claus for our startups.
Investment Ready Indian Diaspora
The Indian Diaspora is a pool of talent in terms of technical and business expertise.Though Prime Minister Narendra Modi is significantly regenerating the interests of Indian Diaspora to connect back with India, efforts must be made to specifically encourage them to invest in local businesses and entrepreneurial ventures, through huge amount of investment ready capital they already. Even if they return back and start their own ventures locally, it would be a huge boost to domestic business creating abilities of people of India.
Incubating Entrepreneurs In Universities
Cash heavy foreign universities always support entrepreneurial ventures which evolved in their campuses. Easing their entry into the Indian educational and incubator space by allowing them to fund, invest and patent Indian entrepreneurial ideas is incremental for the innovation and invention acumen of Indians and our entrepreneurs. CIIE, a startup incubator run by IIM Ahmedabad, can serve as an indigenous example in this domain. Indian college students particularly should be encouraged to become entrepreneurs. Rather than job-getters, they should strive to be job providers.
Team Inc42 wishes you a Merry Christmas!