Startups can make India a hardware powerhouse, says HCL Co-founder Ajai Chowdhry
India's capability in software, integrated with its hardware opportunity, makes the country uniquely placed and the only alternative to China, said Ajai Chowdhry, Co-founder, HCL, at TechSparks Mumbai.
Thursday March 23, 2023,
2 min Read
Startups in India have the opportunity to make the nation a hardware powerhouse, said Ajai Chowdhry, Co-founder, HCL.
India's capability in software, integrated with its hardware opportunity, makes the country uniquely placed in the world, said Chowdhry, during a fireside chat with Shradha Sharma, Founder and CEO, YourStory, at TechSparks Mumbai 2023.
"People want an alternative to China. That can only be India—due to the size of the market and the trustworthiness and goodwill in the global market," he said, adding that there is a great opportunity for startups in various areas to innovate.
"However, as hardware startups scale, they need to balance process with passion," he advised.
Chowdhry also said he is working with the government on a list of 500 products that should be made in India.
Chowdhry also spoke about HCL's inception and journey—how it was started with just Rs 1.6 lakh and grew to be one of India's leading IT hardware firms.
"I was passionate about creating an electronics industry in India and making the hardware sector flourish in India. We created our first PC at the same time Apple created its first."
Commenting on funding, Chowdhry said there is always funding for startups if they differentiate their products.
"The funding winter may not hold true if you can start to create a temporary monopoly. Create something unique and plan versions one, two, three and four, and keep staying ahead," he emphasised.
The HCL co-founder also said he is bringing together angel investors in his network to fund Indian hardware startups.
Chowdhry's session kicked off Day 2 at TechSparks Mumbai, setting the tone for the ensuing sessions.
Edited by Swetha Kannan