It has been a blockbuster funding season for startups across sectors since June 2021, and August was no different. Not to mention the slew of startups lining up for public listings in India and abroad. It is, indeed, the best of times to be a part of the vibrant startup ecosystem in India. And investors, having witnessed the massive demand for digital solutions offered by agile and young startups, want to have an early mover’s advantage in the race.
As we sat down to shortlist the startups for August, we wanted to highlight upcoming companies zeroing in on niche requirements within the existing digital and SaaS frameworks and offering mature solutions. Such solutions are suitable for digital-native clients and for many customer segments, SMEs and enterprises that had to accelerate their digital journey overnight due to the pandemic.
30 Startups To Watch: August 2021
In August, we took a deep dive into early-stage startups whose solutions are meant to deepen existing digital capacities for novel use cases. On the B2C side, we have picked a number of companies that are layering the allure of virtual gaming into mundane but essential activities like fitness, learning and even work goals. On the B2B side, we have looked at businesses applying legacy workflow management solutions to solve manual enterprise challenges.
In this list, we have 12 SaaS (and a few other ‘as-a-service’) startups that are helping businesses onboard new clients smoothly, building workflows for fixing hardware/firmware glitches and improving technicians’ skills, preventing software wastage, managing finances at academic institutions, helping businesses discover better SME vendors, providing anti-counterfeiting solutions and much more.
We have seven startups in the healthcare space, trying to build a new health insurance model, motivating people to achieve fitness goals and making healthier lifestyles more accessible to all and sundry.
Then there are a few edtech companies making learning a fun-filled activity. We have also featured eight startups directly in the ecommerce space or enablers strengthening the ecommerce ecosystem with logistics and technology solutions.
Interestingly, all the startups listed here are less than three years old. But the way most of them have built a significant clientele shows the relevance of their solutions in the current scenario.
Check out the 19th edition of Inc42 Plus’ 30 Startups To Watch list.
Editor’s Note: The list below is not meant to be a ranking of any kind. We have listed the startups in alphabetical order.
Why Anthem Made It To The List
Classrooms have gone virtual in the past few years, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic, but the backend offices have remained in humongous filing cabinets. Excel sheets and manual bookkeeping cost educational institutions time and money and often lead to errors and delays. Plus, there is no automated way to track and review expenses or manage fees. Realising that traditional institutions need a smart system to boost their backend processes, Chennai-based Anthem was set up in 2018 and developed a suite of SaaS solutions.
Anthem’s offerings enable institutes to automate their finance and admin operations. Its revenue streams include platform subscriptions for expenses as well as earnings from fee management solutions. The B2B startup’s target user base covers schools, colleges and coaching classes, and it claims to have more than 10,000 paying customers across 400 cities. Now it targets 100,000 customers and wants to raise its gross transaction value (GTV) from INR 1,300 Cr to INR 3,500 Cr.
Anthem is also planning to cross-sell its solutions for payment, lending, content and commerce space in the future.
Why AppsForBharat Made It To The List
Devotional practices and spiritual awareness have guided millions of Indians over the years. Although devotional content has gained significant traction on TV and YouTube, it is yet to find a firm footing and a massive audience in the app world. Now Bengaluru-based AppsForBharat wants to bridge this gap.
Founded in November 2020, AppsForBharat aims to emerge as a spiritual-tech company. It is currently developing a range of products to cover various spheres of life, including spiritual and devotional engagement, wellness and meditation-related tools, communities and devotional content. It has recently started working in stealth mode using an app and showcases a number of features like daily aarti, horoscope readings and almanac, among others.
The startup has onboarded a multidisciplinary team with experience in building and scaling products across domains such as content, gaming, social and e-commerce. The company is also looking to hire talent for product development, data and engineering.
Why CreatorStack Made It To The List
Online content creators form the next wave of digital entrepreneurs. But dependency on followers and ad revenues renders the stack to build their business incomplete, leaving them at the mercy of sponsors, brands and platform partnerships and often taking the focus and the control away from their creative work. Realising this reality, Bengaluru-based CreatorStack has developed a platform that helps creators monetise their work.
Launched in 2020, the company offers a full set of tools to help creators scale as entrepreneurs and manage fans, teams, brands and investors. It also provides actionable insights so that creators can easily collaborate with all these entities. As a result, they remain in control and build a strong bond with their respective audiences/communities.
To build its customer base, the startup targets YouTubers with a follower base ranging from 20K to 1 Mn. Its revenue comes from commissions on royalties paid to creators.
It is currently running in beta but will go live soon. Its immediate plans include building a dedicated user base and helping launch creator IPOs (similar to how company IPOs work).
Why Efaarms Solutions Made It To The List
Farmers across the country face many challenges throughout the production lifecycle, ranging from supply chain issues to limited agri data to lack of access to top-rung agricultural inputs such as high-quality seeds, animal feed, fertilisers, pesticides and other agrochemicals. So, they often spend hours at local markets, buying products that rarely come with quality guarantees and lugging them back to their farms. Bengaluru-based Efaarms Solutions was started as an all-inclusive point-of-contact in 2020 to take the pain out of this traditional and time-consuming procurement process.
Besides buying agricultural inputs on the startup’s online platform called Faarms, farmers can access a massive inventory directly available from well-known brands/manufacturers. Better still, the company uses its in-house logistics to ensure doorstep delivery of goods. In fact, Efaarms focusses on catering to those located in the remote regions of northern and central India. It has recently introduced health insurance for farmers as well as cattle insurance.
Efaarms is currently present in Punjab, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh and claims to be delivering 1,000+ products to 800,000 farmers in more than 20,000 villages. It aims to reach 50,000 villages by the end of the current financial year.
The startup also claims its farming customers have seen their average income grow by 16% year on year due to easy access to top-rated products and a hassle-free home delivery system.
Why Elda Health Made It To The List
We have seen incredible efforts to take the ‘taboo’ tags away and normalise conversations around puberty, menstruation and pregnancy. But how menopause affects women’s health remains a largely ignored topic.
Globally, 1 Bn women are expected to reach menopause by 2025. And various estimates suggest that most women end up spending an average of $20,000 for menopause care. The problem gets trickier in India, where patriarchal norms and social stigma make it difficult for women to access healthcare. However, Bengaluru-based Elda Health is trying to address this issue.
Founded in January 2021, the Elda Health app is a one-stop platform that helps women understand menopause-related health issues, identify preventive measures to stay healthy and gain access to accurate diagnoses. The startup claims to offer research-backed, scientific wellness solutions for the ever-busy urban women and has put together a panel of medical experts from different fields (gynaecology, orthopaedics, chronic pain, dermatology, nutrition, mental health and more) to ensure the best possible patient outcomes. Its revenue comes from curated treatment solutions.
Apart from onboarding many more healthcare and wellness professionals and doctors, Elda wants to scale up its offerings, operations and team strength in the short term. It is also developing an AI-powered software platform for more accurate medical interventions and suggestions.
Why Even Made It To The List
The Covid-19 pandemic has made people acutely aware of the loopholes and the inadequacies of the existing health insurance ecosystem. During times of dire need, many found that their little-used insurance policies did not cover many critical tests and diagnostic requirements, forcing them to bear out-of-pocket expenses.
To address this pain point, Bengaluru-based Even, a newly minted healthcare provider that partners directly with India’s top hospitals, is now offering unlimited diagnostics, consultations and up to INR 50 Lakh worth of hospitalisation for a monthly subscription.
Set up in 2020, the healthcare startup claims that its subscription will cover any test prescribed by doctors. It means, for a monthly fee, a patient can avail cashless, top-of-the-line care from leading hospitals in India without paying any out-of-pocket expenses or worrying about being overtreated or undertreated.
Interestingly, Even’s network hospitals focus on preventive checks (OPD and diagnostics) and risk mitigation early on (by employing care at early stages of the disease) to help minimise future costs.
The company targets customers aged 20-50 and residing in Tier 1 cities.
Even’s immediate goal is to grow the customer base in Bengaluru and continue to expand its hospital network. It is also growing its team and hiring top talent. Its long-term goal is to expand to other Tier 1 cities, including Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai.
Why Everstage Made It To The List
The salary structure of sales representatives mainly consists of commissions and bonuses (for reaching sales quota) apart from standard pay. But when it comes to calculating one’s salary, it is primarily done by the finance team, leaving the salespeople uncertain about their payouts. Set up in 2020, this is where Delaware-headquartered Everstage comes into the picture.
The platform’s gamification features allow salespeople to track their current quotas and deals pipeline and get forecasts about their earnings based on their commission structures. All of these, packed into a gamified interface, motivate and incentivise salespeople to achieve their targets.
Everstage currently works with SaaS companies and sees inbound interest from insurance, real estate, pharmaceutical and biotech firms. The platform can be customised for different sectors and commission plans.
Why FlashPrep Made It To The List
Test preparation in India is yet to get past rote learning. However, an increasing number of edtech platforms are now claiming to offer better solutions to help people crack these tests. Set up in 2020, Bengaluru-based FlashPrep is one such startup that has developed a mobile-based learning platform in tune with modern learning techniques.
FlashPrep condenses study material into bite-sized information and uses techniques like spaced repetition that (it claims) helps students retain the information for a longer period. It claims to have more than 15,000 monthly active users and 30,000 app downloads so far. How the platform helps users quantify and track their learning outcomes is its USP, the company says. As of now, learning modules for NEET, UPSC, NCERT and CBSE are available on the platform.
The startup is currently working on expanding its user base and product offerings.
Why Gyde Made It To The List
Businesses worldwide spend massive amounts every year to purchase performance-boosting software programmes. However, nearly 30% of these products lie unused as they are too complicated (user manuals and free assistance are often found outdated in such cases), or companies have failed to optimise their software usage due to compliance/reconciliation issues. In brief, software wastage hurts company budgets, user productivity and the estimated ROI from these critical assets.
That’s why Pune-based SaaS platform Gyde was set up in 2019 to help businesses become software-ready with the help of step-by-step voice assistance, byte-sized training videos and relevant content.
Gyde produces personalised, multilingual content that can be viewed within a software application for easy understanding and quick consumption. The company says this has also reduced the need for classroom training, lengthy user manuals and reliance on support teams.
The startup is currently catering to midsize enterprises, cloud-based applications and others looking to enhance user efficiency. It has recently launched Gyde mobile SDKs and ready-to-use guides for platforms such as SAP SuccessFactors, Salesforce, Zoho CRM and LinkedIn Sales Navigator for Microsoft Dynamics. Additionally, the platform is used by growing SaaS companies in CRM, HR tech and collaboration space.
Gyde charges its customers based on the number of applications for which users avail its guidance.
Its immediate plan is to accelerate product development, acquire customers globally and grow its footprint fourfold in the next four quarters.
Why Hash Made It To The List
While many segments in the FMCG space have gone digital due to a spike in demand for e-grocery services, the tobacco industry has not witnessed similar changes due to regulatory compliance and health concerns. However, a Delhi-based startup is getting ready to usher in that change.
Launched in 2021, the D2C cigarette brand Hash plans to use digital supply chain solutions and targets small shop owners and paan walas to market its product. The brand is currently present in Delhi-NCR and aims to expand to other major cities in Northern India in the current financial year.
The startup claims to be building solutions that will help digitise the businesses of neighbourhood paan walas and small shopkeepers. It further wants to create a more efficient supply chain at the micro-level and enable credit access to this segment. The idea is to boost the sales of Hash and other new-age brands that want to leverage the network of similar micro-stores in neighbourhoods, which tend to see a lot of footfall.
Hash claims that within three months of launching, it has developed a network of 1,000 small shopkeepers and paan walas. It is now planning to connect them further via an app. The company wants to expand its team to 500+ professionals in the current fiscal, including the feet-on-the-street sales force who will engage with the stores.
Why Insane AI Made It To The List
With the rise of virtual gaming worlds and metaverses like Roblox and Fortnite, more quality time is spent online, leading to innovative monetisation channels. Bengaluru-based fitness startup Insane AI saw a similar opportunity and decided to combine gamified experience with real-world fitness goals on its online platform.
Set up in 2020, the startup offers a gamified workout app that helps users immerse themselves in a virtual world to explore a story and a mission along with friends. It uses computer vision (part of AI) to convert real-life body movements into synchronous activities in the virtual gaming world. The idea is to introduce game-addicted users to a fitness regime while they interact via a familiar gaming interface and stay engaged due to its stickiness. Its target audience is global Gen Z and younger millennials who are heavily into gaming.
In the future, Insane AI wants to opt for platform play similar to the game Roblox, where people can use its tools to create and monetise their experiences by turning those into training plans, virtual goods and avatars. The company is also preparing to launch globally.
Why Kalam Labs Made It To The List
Gamification seems to be the flavour of the season as startups across sectors are turning to gamified solutions to attract users. Edtech startups have been trying to crack the gamification code for some time now, but no company has hit the product-market fit yet. Now comes Bengaluru-based Kalam Labs, another new startup on the block that is tapping the live gaming format to impart education.
Set up in June 2021, Kalam Labs is in beta and offers K-12 lessons via a live multiplayer game-streaming platform. The company creates gamified content for students aged 6-14 and primarily focusses on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Essentially, learners here play live games with instructors, and the latter walk them through the educational concepts featured in those games via live videos and chats.
The startup claims to have more than 10,000 subscribers for its YouTube videos and 1,400+ paying subscribers. The subscription costs roughly $25 for three months.
Why Murf.ai Made It To The List
Small and large businesses are increasingly trying to establish their presence across social platforms for impact and growth. But this requires a strong content backbone, which could be difficult to implement. For instance, a small company or a single person-led business cannot often create content in multiple languages to ensure a pan-India reach. So, Bengaluru-based Murf.ai has come out with its text-to-speech voice-over solutions to address this pain point.
Started in October 2020, the company offers an AI-enabled SaaS tool that allows users to generate ‘human-like’ voice-overs for videos and slideshows without hiring a voice artist or using any complex recording equipment. Essentially, it aims to make high-quality voice-overs easily accessible to every content creator through a simple online voice studio. Murf.ai is available in 15 languages and has a customer base in 80+ countries.
The startup claims to have clocked a 12x revenue growth, with 80% coming from the US and the UK. It is currently expanding its talent base, market reach and product offerings.
Why Neuron7.ai Made It To The List
Businesses requiring field agents to resolve issues often depend on a manual workflow and standard operating processes. But the success of the entire setup relies on the capabilities of the on-ground agent. For instance, even in highly automated manufacturing units, equipment breakdowns have to be fixed by service personnel experienced in specific repairs, which is rarely documented. That is why California-based Neuron7.ai has built a platform that offers a smart service workflow management solution backed by open-source AI engines and models to solve this problem.
Set up in 2020, Neuron7.ai captures the unique knowledge and expertise of the technicians who service the devices (customised for different sectors) to make its AI platform more accurate. This allows the platform to reduce misdiagnosis of hardware, software and firmware issues while reducing asset downtime for customers. Better still, companies can keep track of the workflows required to fix technical glitches when experienced technicians leave an organisation, and new ones are onboarded.
Until recently, the company was working in stealth mode, and it plans to offer its solutions to Indian customers soon. It is currently in the process of expanding its India teams across engineering, product and sales.
Why NFTically Made It To The List
The market for non-fungible tokens or NFTs is booming worldwide because these are recognised as an important use case of blockchain technology, helping people protect and monetise their digital assets without any intermediary. Simply put, NFTs are data units stored on a digital ledger (blockchain) and represent a host of digital assets such as images, videos, audios and more. The blockchain can validate them as unique and noninterchangeable, thus retaining their value in a world ruled by replications.
Enthused by this power of the blockchain, Gurugram-based NFTically has launched a white-label NFT marketplace where celebrities, influencers, gamers and business owners can produce and monetise digital assets by retailing them as unique collectables. What’s more, they need not be tech experts to operate in this marketplace.
Launched in beta in July 2021, the startup allows enterprises and creators to control various features of their respective NFT hubs, including configuration, pinning (to make things tamper-proof), APIs, integration, user experience, analytics, custom terms and policies and the like. It also supports minting and trading on three blockchains — Ethereum, Polygon and Binance Smart Chain.
NFTically charges a monthly subscription and a commission on the sale/s powered by the startup. As of now, it is growing its customer base and working on a product-market fit.
Why NimbleBox.ai Made It To The List
As artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) become critically important for business success, developers require access to large datasets for testing and learning. However, finding suitable cloud environments to deploy such datasets can be expensive as companies have to buy access, even for testing. Set up in 2018, this is where Chennai-based NimbleBox.ai found an opportunity.
The startup’s platform-as-a-service (PaaS) offering helps data scientists and ML professionals develop and deploy multicloud applications on an intelligent, browser-based platform. The full-stack MLOps platform supports large datasets and major ML frameworks, helping developers train and accurately deploy AI modules at scale, the startup claims. Besides, cohort-based edtech companies and academic institutions also leverage the platform as an online lab for their learners.
The platform is currently catering to more than 10,000 developers in 30+ countries. It is also working with top tech enterprises and institutions such as Intel, Tata Consultancy Services, UpGrad and Holberton School.
Why NOOS Technologies Made It To The List
Globally, counterfeit goods are projected to account for a loss of more than $4.2 Tn by 2022. Although holographic labels and barcodes have been used for decades to counter the threat, these can be easily duplicated by leveraging modern technology. Aware of this technology misuse, Bengaluru-based NOOS has come out with smart anti-counterfeit labelling solutions and a platform to fine-tune and enhance the same.
Started in 2018, the startup works directly with its customers (read brands) and also helps their resellers and distributors globally. Its flagship labelling solution called SCoT generates a unique code every time it is pasted on a product.
To ensure a stringent duplication check, every unit of the same product gets a new code, and a new code will be generated whenever a label is removed and reapplied. These codes can be scanned and read via an app, allowing businesses to track and authenticate their products.
NOOS is currently working with a few industry segments such as pharma, FMCG, fashion accessories and automotive. It charges a one-time fee on solution deployment based on the volume of labels generated.
The startup is currently working on a SaaS-based variable pricing model as it sees an opportunity to emerge as a platform business with options for customisation. Its medium-to-long-term plan includes setting up a physical presence in the West, especially in the US and the European Union.
Why Quickshift Made It To The List
One of the critical challenges that a D2C brand faces today is fulfilling an order within a day or two (a realistic expectation as most ecommerce behemoths are doing it) without spending a fortune on logistics if the item is to be despatched, say, some 2,000 km away. If the brand does not service the order, it risks disappointing the customer and cannot build scale, which leads to higher customer acquisition cost. Pune-based Quickshift addresses these issues with a complete suite of fulfilment services for D2C brands.
Founded in 2018, the company offers tech-enabled, multicity warehousing and integrated shipping, fast shipping options (delivery within one-two days) and transparent order management, besides generating COD (cash on delivery), NDR (non-delivery receipt) and RTO (return to origin) reports, among other logistics solutions. It has built integration tools to connect with all leading marketplaces (Amazon, Flipkart, Nykaa, AJIO and the like) and widely used ecommerce platforms (Shopify, WooCommerce, Magento and more) to ensure seamless operations.
Quickshift earns from order servicing, inventory and shipping and plans to add platform subscription charges for a holistic suite of offerings.
The startup claims to service 25,000 pin codes through its affiliations and fulfilment centres in Mumbai, Delhi-NCR, Pune, Bengaluru and Kolkata. It also says that the distributed warehousing approach helps reduce the time and cost of fulfilment by more than 30%.
Its immediate plans include investing in state-of-the-art fulfilment centres to accommodate a diverse range of storage needs (both light and heavy) and enable better order-processing technology to allow 30-minute deliveries. It will also set up a software backbone that can be integrated with leading vendor platforms across warehousing, billing, inventory management and shipping.
Why Rattle Made It To The List
For more than two decades, enterprises have been using various software solutions like Salesforce and Workday to centralise information flow for their business processes. Then came a series of software solutions that added analytics to this centralised database. These programmes were meant for backend processing of data, but marketing teams still read and accessed the data through static PDFs and spreadsheets. If anyone required additional insights or analytics outcomes within the data, they had to approach the data management and the analytics teams with a request for the same.
But in the age of remote working and collaboration on tools like Slack, the data query process needed to be updated. This is where San Francisco-based Rattle saw the need to build a real-time, collaborative and connective layer to bridge the gap between data analytics teams and sales and marketing decision-makers collaborating on Slack.
Founded in 2020 and launched in March 2021, Rattle has already become a critical requirement for enterprises such as Terminus, Imply and Litmus. It allows decision-makers to connect to the database and the analytics layers like Salesforce via Slack, make changes in the data view, update queries and even allocate the next course of action on the data through a simple, no-code platform. Any member of the marketing team can set up and automate their workflows, alerts and processes. This enables sales and marketing professionals to use systems like Salesforce in a whole new way without losing context.
In less than five months after the launch, Rattle has signed up 50+ enterprise customers, it claims. More than 70% of its trial customers sign up for paid subscription plans that cost $20-30 per user per month, according to the company. It is currently building its product offerings and integration solutions portfolio.
Why Revery Made It To The List
Due to an abundance of gadgets and screens in everyday life, many individuals suffer from sleep-related disorders and health issues. The lack of sleep and rest often leads to several cognitive and physiological disorders.
Consider, for instance, the case of Khoa Tran, a 15-year-old diagnosed with hypertension due to insufficient sleep. This led Tran to research the field of sleep therapy for physical and mental well-being. He eventually launched Revery in March 2021 to help others with mental well-being by combining cognitive behavioural therapy with gameplay and technology. The startup is currently in beta and stealth mode and has plans to launch globally later this year, with the US being its first market.
San Francisco-based Revery wants to make therapy interactive and fun, ensuring that mental health will become part of our lifestyle. So, it is working with a team of sleep, psychiatry and gaming experts to achieve this goal. Although the final goal is to work on different areas of mental wellness, it currently focusses on sleep use cases to treat conditions like insomnia and related health hazards like high blood pressure, low immunity and depression.
Why Rocketlane Made It To The List
Multiple software platforms are available in the market for sales, customer support and project management. But few platforms offer comprehensive solutions for onboarding new customers and documenting project expectations.
In fact, companies often face challenges in accommodating new customers and managing their workflows on generic project management and collaboration tools, which may not have the functions to provide visibility into a project’s progress. And this learning led to the launch of SaaS startup California-headquartered Rocketlane that provides a better onboarding experience to customers and improves project management.
Started in 2020, the company offers a purpose-built unified workspace for collaborating with customers on project onboarding. It claims to help businesses shorten their time to value, streamline their software implementation journeys and provide real-time visibility of end goals while elevating a customer’s experience. It also offers Preflight, a Slack-based community for customer support and onboarding professionals. The platform targets SaaS enterprises that want to streamline their customers’ journeys. It is currently enhancing its product and expanding its team.
Why Siply Made It To The List
As more people feel comfortable using online financial services, many companies have started exploring fintech solutions targeted at specific user groups. In fact, a massively underserved market in this space includes blue-collar and gig workers who often have minimum savings and no credit history. So, Bengaluru-based micro-savings platform Siply started its journey in 2020 to provide ‘sachet financial services’ to contract and gig economy workers, blue-collar job holders, micro-entrepreneurs and small business owners.
The fintech startup targets 400 Mn underserved masses with its micro-savings app that provides regional language support for end-users and offers a host of services such as digital onboarding, instant withdrawal and a wide range of investment options.
Siply has recently launched a guaranteed gold savings scheme that meets the specific requirements of underserved Indians. The entry point has been kept at a low level (a minimum of INR 100 per week) to ensure large-scale participation of financially weaker sections of the society. Its product pipeline also includes a lending platform and chit funds.
Why SkySERVE Made It To The List
Be it flooding disasters or tsunamis, heat waves or rising sea levels, global warming is wreaking havoc on lives and livelihoods. So, it is not surprising that an increasing number of businesses are keeping track of climate changes and climate predictions to hedge themselves against possible losses. In sync with the global trend, Bengaluru-based SkySERVE was launched in 2020 to develop a platform that would house Earth Observation-based applications and deliver timely and affordable insights to stakeholders to reduce environmental impact.
SkySERVE’s solutions will allow a number of industry segments such as agriculture, construction and finance to monitor use cases like crop health and yield, construction progress and the correlation between geospatial conditions and global stock prices (the last use case is in beta). It will deliver data insights through an API (application programming interface) that combines daily satellite updates with historical data.
The company charges a monthly subscription of $50 for this service while other products are in the pipeline. It also aims to work with various sectors and customers to improve use cases and build customer engagement. The ultimate goal? Using satellite data to improve business efficiency by 5x.
Why StreamAnchor Made It To The List
How many people registered for at least one webinar or online course in the past year? It might have been for serious learning, discussions with experts or pure fun. But online sessions covering everything from yoga to startup funding strategy to Mars landing are increasingly becoming a digital mainstay, allowing millions of single-person businesses to reach scale.
But these businesses often find it difficult to deal with connectivity, session quality, evaluation and time management as they heavily depend on a ragtag combination of free resources. So, Bengaluru-based StreamAnchor decided to help solo educators and content creators build and grow their digital business.
Set up in March 2021, the startup offers a SaaS solution for managing subscriptions (fees paid by users for accessing online content) and video-streaming tools. It earns a transaction fee on each subscription generated through this platform and claims to be growing more than 20% month on month in terms of gross subscription and platform usage. The company says that creators leverage its platform to stream more than 5,000 hours of online classes every month.
The market for extracurricular activities is estimated to be $10 Bn in India and around $200 Bn globally, and StreamAnchor plans to tap into it for exponential growth. For the short term, it is planning to grow 10x in scale in the next few quarters.
Why Venwiz Made It To The List
Most manufacturing firms depend on engineering service vendors for their requirements across operations, maintenance and projects. But shop-floor managers and procurement executives are unable to discover and collaborate with the majority of reliable and skilled service vendors, largely MSMEs, as they do not have much information about midsize and small businesses in this space.
The outcome: Companies turn to legacy providers and often pay exorbitant charges while the MSMEs lose out on current opportunities.
Even when companies are willing to engage with MSME service providers, the entire process — from discovery and pre-screening of vendors to scope finalisation and execution at all levels — are mainly managed offline or through not-so-robust networks/interfaces, resulting in inefficiencies, lost time and lost opportunities. Bengaluru-based Venwiz is bridging this demand-supply gap with the help of its B2B marketplace.
Started in 2020, Venwiz is building a SaaS-enabled B2B platform that digitises and streamlines end-to-end service engagements for every factory, from curating and discovering the most suitable service vendors to collaborating with them and executing jobs more efficiently. On the buyer side, its customers are manufacturing plants with a turnover of INR 100 Cr and above, and the sellers are mostly MSME engineering vendors. The company is yet to finalise its revenue model.
Venwiz is currently running pilots with 10 or so manufacturing clients and 1,000+ vendors, focussing on two industry segments in two regions. It is also planning to expand the manufacturing marketplace to other industry segments in the near future.
Why Wasabi Made It To The List
With most companies, big and small, following a platform business model nowadays, it is essential to have a robust and efficient customer relationship management (CRM) setup for optimum business outcomes. It is easy for large enterprises to outsource the entire process, but small businesses often struggle to figure out their CRM budgets, including the spend on CRM software and solutions. This is where Bengaluru-based Wasabi saw an opportunity.
Launched in January 2021, Wasabi offers a communication and growth platform and a suite of solutions to help SMEs manage customer relationships more efficiently and drive business growth. In essence, it enables small businesses and retailers to create a software-driven CRM interface to compete with ecommerce giants. Small businesses can set up chatbots to collect orders and create customer databases using the Wasabi platform.
The startup also aims to recreate in the digital world the offline customer experience that small businesses excel in. This will ensure more personalised services on a par with large businesses and give Indian SMEs a cutting edge in the digital space.
Why Wellcurve Made It To The List
With many big and small brands entering the FMCG space with ‘healthy’ offerings, consumers find it difficult to differentiate and make sound decisions about buying the right products. So, Delhi-based Wellcurve has come out with informative content and also developed a platform where people can discover and purchase high-quality products.
Set up in 2019, Wellcurve is a unique combination of an ecommerce marketplace and a content platform, aiming to provide healthy food products and making people aware of the same. Besides its usual earnings as a digital marketplace, the platform offers a subscription model for the food products it sells. It claims an average order value of more than INR 900 from repeat customers.
Currently, the company has more than 35 nutritionists, dieticians and doctors on board who help with product recommendations and drive the content on social media. Besides, its blog posts on healthy food recipes also add to content stickiness.
Why Wellversed Made It To The List
Health and nutrition supplements have seen a massive spike in demand in the past few years, and currently, the Covid-19 pandemic is driving people to invest more in premium and customised products. Much like its peers, Delhi-based startup Wellversed is also making waves in this space.
Launched in 2018, the startup offers a wide range of food products and supplements across popular nutrition regimes and diet plans, including intermittent fasting, vegan, diabetes-friendly, gluten-free, high-protein and immunity-booster foodstuff. It also facilitates more than 12,000 health transformation plans, focussing on weight loss, skin nourishment, hair care and sexual health. Its products are available across online channels, including its dedicated website and ecommerce marketplaces.
Why Wiz Freight Made It To The List
Even as the economy opens up and small businesses feel incentivised to go global via the digital route, cross-border logistics comes with its own set of constraints for many of them. That is why Chennai-based Wiz Freight has decided to address these challenges with its multimodal logistics solutions.
In 2020, Wiz started with a single offering — ocean imports from China. Today, it specialises in full-service ocean freight solutions (export and import) across major international trade locations and provides door-to-door delivery solutions, while its full-stack platform has automated the cross-border logistics operations of enterprises and SMBs.
The company caters to more than 200 customers in India, Southeast Asia and the Middle East. Its customer roster features the likes of the Tatas, the Adani group, Mahindra & Mahindra, the Aditya Birla group, ReNew Power, Hero Motors, ITC and Marico, among others.
Why YourPhysio Made It To The List
With the rise in sedentary jobs, work-from-home opportunities and unhealthy lifestyles, back and joint pain and other ailments caused by far too little physical activity are fast becoming a modern-day epidemic. But just like any other medical condition that needed professional help, it was only a matter of time before telemedicine platforms started focussing on specialised virtual treatments to deal with these health conditions. In sync with such post-pandemic requirements, Bengaluru-based YourPhysio was launched in 2020 to create an Amazon-like experience for all orthopaedic concerns.
Interestingly, the company has evolved from a chain of brick-and-mortar physiotherapy clinics to an online healthcare service platform. Now patients pay for personalised programmes consisting of online one-on-one sessions, regular monitoring and posting relevant content to help with treatments. The company caters to patients across all age groups.
The startup has a team of 50+ physiotherapists who have worked for Nanavati Super Speciality Hospital, Lilavati Hospital & Research Centres and more. Many of them have worked with Indian Olympians and famous sports stars like Sania Mirza. Its app gives physios instant access to patient information and outcomes, resulting in effective patient progress monitoring.
In the long term, YourPhysio wants to deploy AI-based motion detection technology to take patient monitoring to the next level.