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How 2021 fared for women entrepreneurship

The Nykaa IPO sharpened the gaze on women entrepreneurs. But despite this, multiple social and cultural biases make the journey of a woman entrepreneur difficult. Here’s what they have to say.

How 2021 fared for women entrepreneurship

Saturday December 25, 2021 , 4 min Read

Merry Christmas,


The Indian startup ecosystem raised record funding during the three quarters of 2021, with the investment inflow in Q3 being the highest in seven years at $12.82 billion. However, despite the funding momentum, women-led startups garnered less than two percent of the overall funding despite several marquee studies pointing out women-led startups fare significantly better.


Even when a grand total of 42 startups entered the coveted unicorn club during 2021, only 10 percent of them were led by women — signalling that a lot still needs to be done to achieve gender equality in the startup ecosystem.


This is because women entrepreneurs face significantly higher challenges as compared to men. A dipstick survey conducted by HerStory revealed that most women entrepreneurs faced the most resistance when it came to convincing people that they were “serious” about their business. 


“We are as serious about our businesses as male founders are, but it is nevertheless seen as a hobby for many. It is surprising that many think women wouldn’t be serious about something like a business,” says Kanchan Dwivedi, Founder of LoanGini


This results in poor investment inflow. Of the $49.23 billion raised between 2018 and 2021 YTD, startups with women as co-founders accounted for only 5.7 percent and solo women founders received only a measly 0.90 percent of that pie. 


However, there is a silver lining. Falguni Nayar-led beauty and cosmetics retailer Nykaa — one of the few women-founded startups to touch unicorn status — got listed on the stock exchanges and made its founder the richest self-made billionaire woman.


Click here to read more.



The Interview

Web 3.0 is built largely on three new layers of tech innovation: edge computing, decentralised data networks and artificial intelligence. The move to Web 3.0 comes at a time when ordinary internet users are losing trust in institutions and moving to community-owned applications.


Siddhartha Ahluwalia of Amazon Internet Services Pvt Ltd (AISPL), Mudrex Co-founder and CEO Edul Patel, and Nexus Venture Partners' Pratik Poddar discuss the latest trends in blockchain and cryptocurrency.



Editor’s Pick: Retail trends to watch in 2022

2021 has turned out to be a significant year for retail brands, many of whom shifted to selling online due to the restrictions induced by the COVID-19 pandemic. This resulted in ecommerce growing at an all-time high pace in India.


The year 2022 is expected to shape up the physical retail market to give customers a 360-degree experience. Check out the five trends that will shape offline retail in 2022 and beyond. 

Offline retail trend



Startup Spotlight

Wearable safety device for women


The safety of women is a global problem. In India, more than 35,000 cases of crime against women were registered in 2020, according to NCRB data.


Dhananjay Gupta felt the need of a significant shift in the way we look at women’s safety. This led him to team up with scientists and engineers at the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to develop Safelocket. Read more.

Safety device



Startup Spotlight

Driving customer engagement and retention


Raman Shrivastava had to spend a lot of money to acquire users while building a mood-based food recommendation app, however, he wasn't able to retain them. 


Raman, along with Sumant Subrahamanya and Prateek Gupta, launched CustomerGlu — a YourStory Tech50 2021 startup that induces user stickiness to content or brand without relying on push notifications. Read more.

Tech50 CustomerGlu startup



Before you go, stay inspired with… 

Yogita Tulsiani
“The hybrid work culture is going to find its relevance in 2022 to get the best of employees while ensuring their physical and mental wellbeing.”

Yogita Tulsiani, DIrector and Co-founder, iXceed Solutions



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