This article is contributed by multiple Startup founders from different fields.
Indian startup ecosystem proved to be massive in the year 2021. With a fine number of unicorns, startups from different industries, be it tech, healthcare, food, fintech or others are making everyone's head turn. Every industry is paving its way and is turning into something unimaginable. The year 2022, seems to be getting even more interesting and jaw-dropping.
In this article, entrepreneurs from various fields shared their views about the industries that they feel are going to be the hot topics in the startup ecosystem, this year. So, let's take a look.
Rohit Sahni | CEO & Founder, WK Life
Looking at the current scenario of a possible third wave of Covid-19, I think the hottest topic of 2022 would be how to survive another slowdown in the industry. It could also be the change in the consumer behavior due to lockdown, as we did see a change in the consumer behavior after the previous lockdown. Other than this digital prominence would also be one of the hot topics, owing to the Covid-19 scenario.
Abhinav Mital | Founder, The WorldGrad
2022 is likely to see a continuation of the trends from last year and the massive adoption of technology in all aspects of our lives. Startups will continue to compete with each other to better service levels and go one up on each other whether it is grocery delivery or financial services. With plenty of capital flowing freely in the market, customers will continue to be spoilt for choices. It is expected to see startups in the hi-tech space emerge, leveraging the use of AR or VR to enhance quality provision and introduce a new dimension for customers.
Some of the sectors to watch out for will be fintech, ed-tech, health tech, and cleantech in both the direct-to-customer and business-to-business formats.
Ankur Singh | CEO & Founder, Witzeal Technologies Pvt. Ltd
India is becoming the world’s fastest-growing start-up ecosystem. As we move into the new year, technological innovations in any and every vertical will continue to drive the startup ecosystem. Partnerships between start-ups and large international entities are essential for the advancement of technological advancements, as well as the long-term growth of enterprises of all kinds.
I believe the future of online gaming in India lies in the innovations and creativity leading to providing a personalized experience to gamers. Moreover, we foresee the employment and hiring landscape witnessing a sharp rise along with the players choosing their profession as gaming.
Apu Pavithran | CEO & Founder, Mitsogo
At the forefront, most startups would look to increase viable partnership opportunities with other organizations. India is one of the fastest-growing hotspots for unicorn start-ups, so there will definitely be a stronger collective of unicorn start-ups with better investment opportunities. The post-pandemic world opened up a lot of opportunities for the start-up community. Most of them are looking at effective remote work/hybrid work opportunities to help improve employee well-being. Remote/hybrid work is beneficial to start-ups because it is cost-effective, and it largely helps employees in terms of commute, work-life balance, and improved productivity. Many start-ups will look into implementing cost-effective methods for workplace optimisation. Emerging technologies like 5G, AI, ML, edge computing, metaverse, will definitely create more opportunities.
Himanshu Arya | CEO & Founder, Grapes
The last few years have been exceptional for the start-up ecosystem. There is a surfeit of talent in the Indian marketplace and the start-up sector will continue to thrive in 2022 as well. In this rapidly changing world, Innovation is the key to survival for start-ups. In my belief, the continued development around crypto-currency, Fintech, E-commerce, Metaverse, and Pharma will be in the consumer's mind. We can see a lot of developments in these sectors in the near future.
Nishant Behl | CEO & Founder, Expand My Business
It has been a phenomenal ride for the start-ups in India, especially the emerging tech companies who are witnessing before themselves a new era of possibilities unfold. By the end of 2021, India has already become a home to around 81 unicorn companies of the world, of which 44 emerged to the status in a single year. The startup landscape seems to open up bigger and better possibilities in 2022. Buzzwords like crypto and blockchain are already resonating with the masses. An interesting scenario would be crypto transactions kicking off in the country.
Another interesting thing to look out for is the several IPOs set to happen all through the year. While there is still much to understand how the Metaverse can be related to startups, this virtual reality is set to transform the way a lot of the MSMEs and the business sector work from hereon. Among all the buzz, yet another concern is to create sustainable and more resilient operation systems in companies. All this sets the positive tone for the startup companies and ecosystem which are destined to become the next leaders of the changing world.
Vatsal Agarwal | Founder, The Baklava Box
The pandemic has been a sour spot not just for existing start-ups but also for upcoming ones. The WHO has predicted that 2022 will be a withering of the pandemic and it should be a great time for start-ups to pop up. Radical innovations in startups should be encouraged and the government has been giving impetus for entrepreneurship. Even in our business, brands are changing their outlook towards delivery. Since covid, the focus has been more on a delivery-based model than a traditional sit and eat or take away. That will continue in 2022 as well.
Varun Vashisthaa | Founder, HairVeda
I feel that Indian Startups will try to create their mark in the global marketplace. Non-region-specific startups will definitely expand to the international audience once they have already captured the Indian market. Brands like ours can be hugely benefited from the international market since there is a massive demand and acceptance for ayurvedic products in countries like the USA, Mexico, etc. We all will see huge investments by the investor community in startups that have arrived with a purpose. Sustainable financing is the trend that will dominate the investment ecosystem for a long time. Crypto and Blockchains by startups will be seen from this year onwards and it will create a deep impact on the ecosystem.
Shriyans Bhandari | CEO & Co-Founder, Greensole
2022 is the year for start-ups. While the pandemic keeps disturbing us time and again, panic has reduced. I think we will get used to the pandemic. It was a challenge earlier but it will not be anymore. Startups will get more room to grow. A lot of startups will fail during this time but the start-ups that will manage to pull through will flourish. New startups exploring new niches will also come about.
Kunal Patil | CEO & Co-Founder, WorkIndia
Services being offered by purely tech and tech-enabled companies played an important role during the crucial period of Covid-19. We expect 2022 to be another great year for the Indian Startup Ecosystem. Expect to see more companies catering to the smaller businesses and middle-income households
Entrepreneurship, collaboration, and innovation will be the hot topics in this new year since these are the three key pillars making the entire Indian startup ecosystem the dynamic and vibrant space that it is today. The lessons that all businesses learned over the past two years will be a crucial factor as startups navigate through the new normal. However, we believe that 2022 shows a great promise of being an exciting year for all startups.
Akshay Puljal | CEO, Quikish
Well, the first and foremost thing every startup needs to be prepared for is the continuation of the pandemic. We need to consider this in everything we do. In the F&B industry, you see the demand for clean food rising every day, and more people are leaning towards cooking in their kitchens than ordering from outside. We are glad that Quikish has got it covered already. We believe that Clean food and bringing. Convenience to home cook meals is the aspect which Quikish delivers without compromising on quality and flavours.
Shilpa Rathi | Founder, I Am Love
Start-ups are about solving our everyday problems. Start-ups usually succeed when they are able to solve problems that have existed for a long time but people have learned to overlook them. You have been living with the problems and one day you just get up and decide not to live with them anymore. These problems should have solutions to make our lives easier. I think that should always be a hot topic in any startup ecosystem. Apart from that, trying to get adequate funding is always going to be a hot topic. The launch and having a strong customer base and always be a hot topic. Establishing your brand and being able to track the brand engagement and following will always be a hot topic.
Farooq Adam | Co-Founder, Fynd
The lessons learned in the post-pandemic world will be crucial to growing your startup in 2022.
SaaS Products will continue to grow
SaaS will retain its throne & the market will welcome more cloud solutions with open arms. The surge in cloud software will continue to rise in 2022. More and more companies are making use of cloud software to manage data, productivity, and much more.
Mass acceptance of Deep-Tech
In the past 2 years, we have observed a radical emergence of deep tech. There will be a keen focus on implementing virtual technologies at the grassroots level.
Indian startups raised $36 billion in 2021 to cope with the growing demand for digitization. As the pandemic stretches on, the technology efforts will start to gain more widespread acceptance. 2022 will see more innovation and increased tech adoption as extended reality makes its presence felt.
The reality is that the pandemic has been around for more than 2 years now, going to the office full time seems less and less likely. Organizations have to be open to the idea of hybrid work, where employees visit the office for a few days in the week/month/quarter and continue to work from home on day to day basis.
People have also started to expect this flexibility from employers and it is important to listen to the pulse of the organization rather than imposing regulation.
Rasesh Seth | Founder, Nextyn
We’re seeing a variety of industries that are disrupting traditional ecosystems across the globe. The fintech industry has particularly been of keen interest not only to us, but also to several clients that have been using our services. I believe 2022 is going to continue to fuel its growth, with higher adoption rates and exceedingly high digital payment transactions.
Another term that has been of keen startup interest is Automation. It’s not an independent industry, but the rapid rate at which literally everything is being automated, is frightfully exciting. I don’t think people are considering its long-term impact on the existing workforce, but it is surely making life easier for the vast majority. Right from daily tasks, to cars, to delivery or food. I think 2022 is going to be a year where we see a lot of our daily personal and professional tasks get automated. It’s an interesting space to watch, as its evolving at a monstrously rapid pace.
This is the age of Startups, they are making their presence known in every field and this is just the beginning. From new industries to more viable options regarding businesses. The Startup ecosystem is going to experience something even bigger and better in 2022.