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Startup Advisory Council: SoftBank, Tiger Global And Naspers May Get On Board

Startup Advisory Council: SoftBank, Tiger Global And Naspers May Get On Board

The ministry of corporate affairs had officially announced setting up of National Startup Advisory Council

The council will be led by union minister of commerce and industry Piyush Goyal

Expected council members include Bhavish Aggarwal, Byju Raveendran among others

After major entrepreneurs from the Indian startup ecosystem and with the minister of commerce and industry Piyush Goyal as the chair, Startup Advisory Council may now get investor representatives too.

An ET report said that global investors such as SoftBank, Tiger Global Management and Naspers may become a part of the National Startup Advisory Council. The government is of the belief that top global investors and asset managers, who have pumped in billions into India’s startup ecosystem, should also have a seat at the table.

Having invested billions in Indian startups, Tiger Global, SoftBank and Naspers are one of the most active global investors in the Indian ecosystem.

This week, Tiger Global Management reportedly closed a $3.8 Bn global private investment vehicle called the Private Investment Partners (PIP) XII, which will continue to back tech startups in India, US and China. Further, recently at the World Economic Forum held in Davos, Naspers CEO Bob van Dijk said that the tech-focused venture capital fund will continue to double its investments in India’s tech startup ecosystem, particularly focussed on new-age credit and financial products.

SoftBank, which has already invested over $10 Bn in India, has said it is planning to increase its focus on India’s healthtech, edtech and software-as-a-service (SaaS) sectors for new investments in 2020.

The ministry of corporate affairs had officially announced setting up of National Startup Advisory Council as a platform for the Indian startup ecosystem to put forward its view to the relevant stakeholders and have a say in the policy-making.

“National Startup Advisory Council to advise the Government on measures needed to build a strong ecosystem for nurturing innovation and startups in the country to drive sustainable economic growth and generate large scale employment opportunities,” the ministry’s official statement read.

The ministry has clarified that the advisory council will consist of founders of successful startups, entrepreneurs, representatives from incubators and investors, along with representatives from government departments and regulators that deal with startups.

Earlier reports said the ministry is considering getting Ola cofounder Bhavish Aggarwal, BYJU’s cofounder Byju Raveendran, Infosys cofounders Nandan Nilekani and Kris Gopalakrishnan, and 3one4 Capital’s founding partner Siddarth Pai onboard.

The National Startup Advisory Council is expected to brainstorm on ways to boost the Indian startup ecosystem and encourage innovation among the Indian citizens, especially students. The ministry’s press release clarified that the council will have to focus on innovation across all the economic sectors, including semi-urban and rural areas.

Indian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (IVCA) is also expected to be part of the Board. Further, it is being reported that conversations with prospective stakeholders are already underway to gauge their interest in being part of the Startup Advisory Council.

The investors and entrepreneurs expected to be part of the Council could be announced next month, after the Union Budget and the Delhi state elections.