Opportunities in India’s Digital Space – Part 1

Once again, the startup scene in India’s digital space has started buzzing. The first time it happened was a decade ago. At that time, the users and usage were missing. The situation is a lot different now. Much has happened in the intervening decade.

The Internet user base in India has grown from practically nothing to about 60 million. They are doing more than just browsing. Transactions are a big driver this time around – the convenience of buying tickets (air, train, bus, movies), books and more, with the multitude of payment options is helping drive eCommerce.

Social Networking didn’t exist a decade ago – Facebook is rapidly emerging as one of the most accessed websites in India. Video consumption on YouTube is also something that didn’t exist a decade ago. And of course, the search for jobs, homes and spouses is another big activity. The Internet has become much more diverse than just mainstream portals.

Advertising on the Internet in India now accounts for about $200 million (Rs 900 cr), but a majority of that is monopolized by two companies, Google and Yahoo.  That leaves a much smaller amount for homegrown portals.

Continued tomorrow.

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