Around 20 Indian start-ups and 150 Chinese investors gathered at the Government of India’s first start-up event in Beijing, held at the Indian Embassy this week.
Jack Ma, Chairman of Alibaba Group, attends a show during Alibaba Group’s 11.11 Singles’ Day global shopping festival in Shanghai, China, (Photo: Reuters)
- Government of India’s first start-up event is being held in Beijing.
- Around 20 Indian start-ups and 150 Chinese investors gathered at the event.
- Many Chinese tech giants led by Alibaba are pouring money into technological space in India.
Indian and Chinese start-ups have taken the first tentative steps in establishing a new alliance to provide a platform to facilitate closer linkages.
Around 20 Indian start-ups and 150 Chinese investors gathered at the Government of India’s first start-up event in Beijing, held at the Indian Embassy this week and organised by the Startup India Association along with Venture Gurukool and Sino Global Capital.
A number of Chinese tech giants are already pouring money into the tech space in India, led by Alibaba – a major investor in Paytm – and more recently followed by companies including Tencent, Didi Chuxing-a Chinese Uber-Xiaomi and Baidu. The hope is to provide a platform for two-way linkages, so that the relationship goes beyond investments.
“For a long time, we Indians have looked West both for capital as well as for ideas. While we should continue to do so, our tech entrepreneurs would do well to also look East,” said Amit Narang, Charge d’Affaires of the Indian Embassy in Beijing.
NOV 11 A REMINDER OF CHINESE TECH INDUSTRY’s POWER
November 11 served a reminder of the power of the Chinese tech industry with Alibaba’s annual “11.11 Singles Day” shopping festival raking in $8.6 billion in the first hour alone.
Benny Chen, who heads the India and Global Strategic Alliance division at Ant Financial- Alibaba’s financial services affiliate – said at the start-up event that India was the next big thing for many Chinese companies, drawing a comparison to India’s start-up space today and China in 2005, shortly before the Internet industry took off with a bang with the rise of Alibaba, Baidu and Tencent. “Silicon Valley is pretty much made by half Indians and half Chinese, why not join hands?” he said, adding he was bullish about the growth of mobile Internet in India.
Shirley Mao, Vice Director Xiaomi Investment, said that with the smartphone manufacturer already achieving success in India, it would continue to invest in India, focusing on companies in fintech and content.
“If you set aside for a moment the political issues,” Narang said, “and if you set aside the differences in political systems, purely from a tech and entrepreneur point of view I think you will find that much of the innovation that is happening in this ecosystem here in China to be quite striking.”
“Both the Indian and Chinese ecosystems have remarkable similarities,” he said.
“Big market size, rapidly urbanising fast growing economies, and also a predominantly socially conservative Asian culture. So, much of what we innovate, much of what we produce is intended to bring value to our middle classes. Our innovations are thus low-cost and tailored to our societal conditions. This does not have applicability in the West, but it does have applicability in these two markets,” added Narang.