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“India Won’t Ever Be A Silicon Valley”

TiE is known for its ability to attract the biggest entrepreneurs as much as it is known for the knowledge exchange it enables.

Photo Credit : Paul Dileanis, TiE Delhi,

“India Won’t Ever Be A Silicon Valley”
“India Won’t Ever Be A Silicon Valley”

Kanwal Rekhi enjoys superstar status among the TiE chartered members and just about anybody who knows anything about startups. Mr. Rekhi, after all cofounded and built TiE into the largest global network of Indian entrepreneurs, and was the first Indo-American founder and CEO to take a venture-backed company public on the NASDAQ. He also cofounded Inventus Capital to fund early stage startups.

“It’s hard to see the Indian ecosystem ever becoming as big or surpassing Silicon Valley, it’s a kind of success which is hard to replicate even within the US. But India doesn’t have to be better or bigger or even like Silicon Valley. We need to focus on fostering more innovation within our ecosystem and in the coming decades I think India’s startups will be in a good place.”

Ashok Trivedi, founder of iGate which was acquired by Capgemini for 4.2 billion dollars, sharing his biggest advice to entrepreneurs exclusively with BW said, “Take a few risks, you can’t achieve large successes, without taking some risks.”

Rajendran Dandapani, director of engineering at ZOHO, famous for bootstrapping ever since its inception in around 20 years back, was part of a panel discussion, on how to make bootstrapping great again. The main takeaway to the seekers of inspiration was that innovation is compulsory, and innovation will come out of compulsion. And when you’re known to be an innovative company reliant on your own funds the money you seek to really boost growth will come calling from hither, thither and every other direction.

Making in India was another one of those imminent issues. M2i International is an electric and electronic manufacturing company founded in 2014. Its cofounder and CEO, Prakash Agarwal said, “it’s not a coincidence that our name is M2i, [short for make in India, hain na?]. In the coming years I see India becoming a hub for design and manufacturing.” M2i is currently operating a smartphone manufacturing facility in Greater Noida with a production capacity of 6 million devices under a joint venture with Taiwan’s Wistron, a 30 billion dollar company.

The aspirational India’s story was highlighted by Anant Daga, CEO of ‘W’, TCNS Clothing Co. “How many truly Indian fashion labels are out there? There are a few brands with presence in Mauritius and Sri Lanka, but that is more by accident than anything. The market for Indian fashion is largely untapped and we have more to do here.

The potential in India is massive.”

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