India is the future
As I disembarked from my tuk tuk to attend the Go Global India pitching session in Bengaluru on 18 Nov, I had only one thought: India is the future. India is set to be the fastest growing G20 economy this year, and our two nations are top five investors in each other’s economies.
Gary Stewart at the Go Global India Bengaluru pitch event
For the last 15 years, I have spent most of my days listening to start-ups pitch or pitching myself. At many start-up events around the world, you see a lot of “me-too” products – essentially copies or derivatives of US companies but without the global ambition or any real attempt at differentiation. The companies participating in Go Global India were different. They were solving real problems that they had seen and experienced in their local ecosystems.
The impact of Go Global India
Go Global India 2019 cohort at the Bengaluru pitch event with Dominic Asquith, British High Commissioner to India
Two of the biggest challenges for start-ups are finding the fit between a product and a market, and then scaling the business once found. The UK-India Tech Hub’s Go Global India programme addresses these stumbling blocks by providing early-stage startups with the tools needed to expand globally.
Go Global India London pitch event judges (l-r): Prem Barthasarathy, Pontaq; Abha Thorat-Shah, British Asian Trust; Louise Sheridan, DCMS; Gary Stewart, The Nest
Based on what I saw at the Go Global India pitch event and networking evening organised in London on 4 December, that will not be hard. The 2019 cohort delivered their 3-minute pitches to a panel of judges and an audience of UK tech ecosystem players.
The overall winner of the pitch event was an awesome, young female entrepreneur named Divya Rathod, who had created a patent-pending technology to keep toilets clean for an extended period of time. Public toilets are essential in many countries, but unclean toilets are a potential source of many disease epidemics. The winner of the greatest social impact award, Vikram from OCEOWater, had created an IoT enabled smart water purifier.
Overall winner Divya Rathod of Divya Innovation with judge Prem Barthasarathy
Winner of greatest social impact, Vikram Gulecha of OCEOWater with judge Abha Thorat-Shah
You could easily see not only how both of these products will improve the lives of many people, but also how their companies could scale across the globe via sustainable business models. In other words, I see in India lots of future unicorns (tech companies worth $1 billion).
Go Global 2019 cohort
Go Global India 2019 cohort with Liz Stevenson of Tech Nation
Vikram Gulecha, OCEOWater
Tridibesh Bandyopadhyay, InQube Innoventures
Mayank Goyal, Hop Financial Solutions
Puneet Batra, Avrio Energy
Srivatsa Sreenivasarao, TraceX Technologies
Sivareena Sarika, Pregbuddy
Nishant Kathpal, Ayati Devices
Niraj Shah, Digi Agri
Saras Ramamoorthy, Learning Matters
Khushboo Aggarwal, Zyla Health
Akash Murthy, Euprime
Vinay Chataraju, Kritsnam Technologies
Vijayadurga Koppisetti, ARCHITUDE
Subramanian Ramvijji, Waymore Enterprises
Divya Rathod, Divya Innovation
Shravanth Donthi, Green Lantern Engineering
Parul Aghi, Aerologiks
Ganesh Madhukar Bhere, Science for Society Technologies
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