During the early years of this decade, when the startup ecosystem was expanding and flourishing with a lot of hullaballoo in Delhi–NCR, the neighbouring city of Chandigarh was just getting started. Trigma, Viprasoft, iNVERTEDi and uTrade Solutions were some of the companies that, through their IT-based solutions, were laying down the foundations for a startup ecosystem in Chandigarh.
Fast forward to 2014: two companies focusing on two hot categories — on-demand transportation service and e-commerce provided by Jugnoo and Pumpkart respectively — emerged in the city and infused new life into the ecosystem. Since then, there’s been no looking back.
Over the past two years, Jugnoo has raised around $16 million in a series of rounds. This year, in its Series-B tranches, Jugnoo raised $ 7 million. Another pioneer, bootstrapped Pumpkart claims it will be able to touch profitability next year.
“Observing the enthusiasm of entrepreneurs, a new ecosystem is building around startups. Many co-working spaces like Startup in a Box, Start Hub Nation, Innov8, and many others have come up within the startups to support their brethren. Besides, the city is also witnessing the growth of incubators and investor forums like Chitkara Innovation Incubator, Startup Accelerator Chamber of Commerce (SACC), and Chandigarh Angel Networks to help the city’s startup ecosystem to grow and spread,” says Vineet Khurana, Founder, Educopter. He is also on Chandigarh Angels Network’s core team.
He adds that in the past two years, targeting various sectors, many new startups have come up in the city.
Here we will talk about 10 such promising early-stage startups based in Chandigarh.
This nine-month-old startup is aimed at bringing a cloud platform to students as well as teachers for creating and sharing e-notebooks, e-flashcards, and e-books. All the books are on cloud and can be access from any device. There is no limit to what users read. They can read anything from Java to Mechanics of Materials. Users can highlight important parts of the book, which others can also see. It says that its vision is to remove the backpack that students have to carry.
Operational since late 2014, the online news portal publishes news stories, general city information, and upcoming events relevant to city dwellers. It claims to get over 175,000 page views per month and has over 25000 subscribers.
Launched last year, this startup offers customer acquisition solutions. Using features like live chat, email, intelligence-based messaging, analytics and visitor activity tracking, the platform helps other platforms understand user behaviour and acquire them.
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Founded in August 2015, JumboBasket Technologies is an e-commerce liquidation marketplace which acquires returned goods from e-commerce platforms and offline retailers to sell them to local traders.
Started in 2014, the platform caters to data-driven enterprises and startups seeking SMAC (social, mobile, analytics and cloud) solutions. Its DevOps approach applies agile and lean thinking principles to all stakeholders who develop, operate or benefit from an organisation's software systems. Under cloud deployments, it provides a catalogue of customisable multi-vendor IT infrastructure. Through its big data solutions, it helps users know the worth of what they have in their warehouse. Besides these, it also provides IoT solutions and mobile applications.
This venture claims to deliver high-end services in areas like installation and commissioning and operation and maintenance of power plants, including validation and site acceptance testing. Reliance Industries, Maruti, Tech Mahindra, Lanco, Ambuja Cement, and many other big names feature on their client list.
A few months old, this price comparison and product discovery site brings top online stores on one platform and compares prices to offer users the best deals. It claims to aggregate over 30 million products ranging across categories such as fashion, electronics, books, and beauty products, among others.
This mobile application development company builds apps for both Android and iOS platforms. The company’s works include building product strategy, designing UX, mobile app testing, backend support, and data-analytics. It claims to work with both domestic and international clients.
This e-commerce platform which was launched last year sells supplements for strength athletes and bodybuilders. Its product list includes whey protein, mass gainers, protein blends, casein and protein bars, among others.
This platform refers to itself as a one-stop-shop for kids’ clothing needs. Apart from apparel, it puts together entire baby ensembles on its online store.
From e-commerce to IT to media, Chandigarh’s startup ecosystem provides solutions across sectors. In the past few years, with the emergence of incubators, accelerators, and investors in the city, the ecosystem has evolved immensely.
However, the city faces some challenges too. Experts say that owing to the lack of a skilled workforce and non-seriousness of the state or UT government, the startup industry hasn’t evolved as expected. If the city’s infrastructure is correctly utilised, it will benefit the industry tremendously.
A big shoutout to all our sponsors - Zendesk, Axis Bank, Sequoia Capital India Advisors , Digital Ocean, Microsoft, AWS, Akamai, Target, Verisign, Kerala Startup Mission, Brand Launch Centre, Tork and Blink.