Debjani Ghosh: Talent Is Really Rewriting Competition And Business Rules

Bengaluru, NFAPost: Nasscom President Debjani Ghosh said talent is really rewriting competition and business rules around the world.

Speaking to NFAPost at the round table organised as part of the Nasscom Product Conclave 2019 on Tuesday, Debjani Ghosh said India should continue to churn out good talent. “There is no need for any policy framework for that. What you need is to continue to churn out good people. If you have good talent the world will join,” she said.

Debjani Ghosh highlighted the fact that the biggest problem the world is facing now is shortage of good talent. “Talent is really rewriting the competition and business rules all over the world. If India can make talent as a competitive advantage and world will come to you,” she said.

National priority

She highlighted the importance of India harness its talent pool in the context of emerging digital shift happening globally and also India under the leadership of Narendra Modi-led government. “I would say national priority number one is ensuring right talent for us,” said Debjani Ghosh. Nasscom President made this in the context of India emerging the hub for startup setting up research and development centre along with other MNCs setting up engineering centres. 

Commenting on it, Nasscom Vice President (Industry Initiatives) K S Viswanathan said Global R”&D centres being set up in India is growing 35% every year.

“Product engineering division of almost all multinational companies have already established their footprint here in India. Now the wave is that startup setting up their research and development centres in India. But the space for them to set up these centres have reduced in Bengaluru. It is not unfair to assume India emerge the digital engineering hub of the world,” said Viswanathan.

Startup Report

The apex organisation of Indian IT companies also unveiled NASSCOM-Zinnov Startup Report 2019 as part of the Product Conclave 2019. The report states that around 1,300 startups were added to India’s ecosystem in 2019, making for a total of 8,900 tech startups. There are more than 335 active incubators and accelerators in India (see YourStory’s Startup Hatch section for profiles of some of their programmes and portfolios).

The report finds that the total investments in Indian startups have touched $4.4 billion for the January- September 2019 period, across 450 start-ups at a 5% year-on-year growth trajectory. Early stage funding too witnessed a spike with $ 1.6 billion being recorded in 2019. On the employment generation, Indian startup created a total of 60,000 direct jobs in 2019 alone, compared with 40,000 jobs in 2018.

Convergence of technologies

While India has over 335 active incubators and accelerators, the report finds that more than 65% share of incubators and accelerator programs were added in the last five years, out of which 57% are active outside Tier 1 cities. These centres has a capacity to enable over 5000 startups every year.

“Indian start-up ecosystem has definitely come a long way in providing a level playing field for innovators to flourish by strengthening capabilities and fostering co-creation. The next wave of growth will be at the junction of convergence of technologies, where different sectors will embrace digital to re-define their operations,” said Debjani Ghosh.

Rise in Unicorn

On the Unicorn startups with over $1 billion valuation, Nasscom report states that India added seven of them during 2019. It took total tally of Unicorns in India to 24, which is third highest number after the United States and China. The companies added to the Unicorn club are Ola Electric, BigBasket, Rivigo, Delhivery, Dream 11, Druva and Icertis.

It is interesting to note that 71% of Indian Unicorns are in the space of business-to-business (B2B) space. Sectors like gaming, automotive, supply chain and logistics also added to to the list. The Nasscom report also identified over 50 potential unicorns in the country that have received cumulative funding of more than $50 million. These include start-ups like GreyOrange, Grofers and Pine Labs.

Deep Technology Startups

The report highlighted the growing number of deep technology startups which witnessed a growth of 33% compared with 8% in 2014. The primary sector which helped in driving the growth include medical diagnostics, precision agriculture, security and fraud detection.

As per the report, the Indian startup ecosystem has brought a cumulative valuation of $95-101 billion. Nasscom is working hard to increase the pace of this growth by 2025 by taking the total number of unicorns to 95 to105 which should bring a cumulative valuation of $ 350 to $390 billion. Nasscom also wants to increase direct jobs to 1100-1250,000 in the start-up ecosystem by 2025.

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