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WATCH: The week that was - from mapping India’s future to Byju Raveendran’s billion-dollar dreams, and the rise of venture debt

This week, we delve into the various aspects that can turbocharge India’s growth, why Indian startups are veering towards venture debt funding, and the inspiring story of Byju Raveendran.

WATCH: The week that was - from mapping India’s future to Byju Raveendran’s billion-dollar dreams, and the rise of venture debt

Saturday August 17, 2019 , 3 min Read

This week, India celebrated its 73rd Independence Day. In its seventh decade of Independence, the country now stands “on the cusp of major change: a transformation that could lead to unprecedented economic growth paired with radical improvements in the nation’s Human Development Index (HDI)”.

We take a look at the opportunities for businesses - from fintech and agritech to cybersecurity and artificial intelligence (AI) in manufacturing - that will help India turbocharge its growth and reach the goal of a $5 trillion economy in the next five years.

Until recently, venture debt was not really the sought after source to raise funds for startups in India. But, lately, it seems to have made its mark on the ecosystem. At present, venture debt serves various strategic capital needs of startups, and is often a less complex financial instrument.

The emergence of players like InnoVen Capital, Trifecta Capital, Alteria Capital, and the entry of individuals like Flipkart foundersSachin Bansal and Binny Bansal,has only brightened this segment.

In his journey as a coder and a tech lead, 38-year-old Ramki Gaddipati, CTO and Co-founder, Zeta, has developed and created products way before any successful startups even conceptualised the idea.

In an interaction with YourStory, Ramki talks about his journey from joining BITS Pilani, which exposed him to engineering and computers, to letting go of opportunities due to personal problems, and building products from scratch to solve real problems.

Ramki Gaddipati

Ramki Gaddipati, Cofounder and CTO of Zeta

In our newest episode of Meet the Mavericks, we present the story of Byju Raveendran, who is nothing short of a legend. With a recent fundraise – reported to be to the tune of $150 million – his edtech unicorn BYJU’S current valuation stands at $5.7 billion. The CEO and Co-founder holds 21 percent stake in the company.

Needless to say, BYJU’s has been on a funding spree – having raised $969.8 million from various venture investors so far – as it expands its presence across international territories.


Byju Raveendran

India’s 300-million-plus urban consumers need not be wooed anymore. It is time to focus on users from Bharat. With a growing number of internet users in Tier II and III cities, Indian language content apps have also witnessed growth. These consumers are also mobile-first users.

Watch other video interviews and stories our viewers loved this week:

This startup aims to supercharge B2B rewards programmes

Meet Shalini Prakash, Amit Chawla, and Ralph Browning, who want loyalty programmes to go across brands and not just function in silos. While Shalini is a former VC from 500 Startups, the other co-founders are long-time technology experts who have worked in simplifying rewards programmes.


Co-founder of Epic.One Shalini Prakash

How Degreed is helping corporations reskill employees

This startup has raised close to $140 million and works with over 250 companies. In this video story, Product Marketing Head of Degreed Todd Tauber talks about how the US-based skill learning company is helping corporations shed their top-down approach to make their workforce more relevant.


Todd Tauber

SpringPeople is helping corporations in employee upskilling

Bengaluru-based SpringPeople is on its way to becoming a $10 million company soon. In this video interview with YourStory, Co-founder Ravi Kaklasaria tells us how the bootstrapped cloud-based learning platform plans to achieve this goal.

(Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta)