I started my own small business in 2021 and the journey hasn’t been the smoothest. I often look for inspiration and motivation from other startups especially on days when things seem difficult. When I was younger a lot of my motivation came from successful founders from outside India (like Steve Jobs) but in the past decade, the startup culture in India has led to some amazing and successful startups taking over the Indian business space. There are a few that stand out for me for their innovativeness, founder’s business acumen, product offering, and success story. Here are their stories –
My favourite Indian start-up has to be Nykaa not only because it is an online market for all things make-up and fashion-related but also because of the phenomenal growth it has achieved in one decade. It was started in 2012 by Falguni Nayar to cater to the growing middle class in India that wanted access to quality make-up. She then went on to launch a make-up brand with the same name to provide affordable make-up that catered specifically to Indian women. Nykaa went public in 2021 taking Falguni’s net worth to USD 7.5bn. How impressive is that?
This is a fairly new start-up launched in 2021 by techies from IIT Roopar but its product offering stands out for me. Ubreathe has designed the world’s first plant-based air purifier (patent pending). The air purifier uses phytoremediation technology to remove particulates from the air. I appreciate any technology that includes nature in it, the best of both worlds.
If you are a homeowner you know how difficult it can be to design your home especially with imagining how your choices will look when finally put together. Wudzo to the rescue! Integrating augmented reality into home designing, this home-tech company allows its customers to experience their design choices (colours, materials, sizes, finishes, etc.) before committing to them. Launched in 2018 by Varun Raveendran (an interior designer) and Manoj Martin (an architect), Wudzo not only offers superior interior designing capabilities but also allows clients to track their expenses as well as the progress of their custom-made pieces all on Wudzo’s home tech platform. I love when technology companies make our lives so much easier.
Check out how it works here.
Another start-up that revolutionized the Indian retail space by offering customers groceries (at cheaper rates) in the comfort of their homes. With a massive growth in young working professionals, the app targeted an audience that couldn’t find time during the week to go to the market to pick up essentials, by delivering them groceries at their convenience and discounted prices. This app was a lifesaver for my flatmate and me during the first lockdown since we didn’t have any essential stores near our house. Founded by 4 techies in 2011, majority stake of Big Basket (worth $220 mn) was acquired by the Tata group in 2021.
If you’ve ever tried renting or buying a house in India, you know what a pain working with a broker can be and also, their unreasonable charges. Nobroker offers a simple marketplace for owners to list their properties for sale/rent minus the middle man. When I was looking for my first apartment in 2017, I went through 12 annoying brokers before discovering this app and finding my dream apartment on it. Again, an innovative solution to a problem almost all of us face at some point in our lives.
These are some of the MANY Indian startups that have managed to leave a mark on my mind. What are some startup ideas that impressed you?
Photo 1 (Under Nykaa): Photo by Dan Cristian Pu0103dureu021b on Pexels.com
Photo 2 (Under Ubreathe): Photo by Scott Webb on Pexels.com
Photo 3 (Under Wudzo Home Interiors): Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com
Photo 4 (Under Big Basket): Photo by Sarah Chai on Pexels.com
Photo 5 (Under NoBroker): Photo by Kindel Media on Pexels.com