How Chandrayaan-3’s success is fuelling India's deep-tech rise
The Chandrayaan-3 mission showcased India's profound capacity for cutting-edge product startups and innovative initiatives—an inspiring example of indigenous brilliance.
As India's tech landscape continues to evolve, the resounding success of Chandrayaan-3 stands as a beacon of achievement. We congratulate the country, particularly ISRO, for this remarkable feat. Beyond its mission's significance, Chandrayaan-3's triumph underscores India's commitment to capital efficiency.
The mission showcased India's profound capacity for cutting-edge product startups and innovative initiatives, with all research, development, and engineering conducted within the country—an inspiring example of indigenous brilliance.
Catalysts for India's product startup ecosystem's growth
Against this backdrop and shifting geopolitical currents, India's product startup ecosystem experiences a pivotal moment. The emergence of local supply chains—driven by necessity—nurtures a culture of innovation. Coupled with a burgeoning GDP, the drive for indigenous technological advancement has never been stronger.
Evolution of VC ecosystem in backing disruptive ventures
Initially, Indian venture capitalists primarily invested in IT services and business process outsourcing startups. Later, their focus shifted to ecommerce, fintech, and edtech ventures.
As the landscape evolved, venture capital flowed into B2B exchanges, fintech, edtech, and direct-to-consumer startups. Today, the VC ecosystem stands at a crucial juncture, ready to embrace a new era of innovation.
The emphasis is increasingly on supporting intellectual property and science-driven startups capable of revolutionising entire industries. It represents a fusion of cutting-edge technology and entrepreneurial foresight, central to the venture capital landscape.
Capital efficiency through indigenous innovation
The driving force behind many of India's standout startups is their remarkable capital efficiency compared to global competitors. It is attributed to their strategic decision to conduct the entire R&D process within India, capitalising on the nation's skilled talent pool and cost-effective resources.
In fact, this approach enhances their competitiveness and enables a lean operational model—a key differentiator in today's dynamic business landscape.
Here, we delve into a couple of examples embodying India's product startup prowess, each poised to tackle substantial challenges underpinned by India-based R&D.
Taking aerospace to new heights, BluJ Aerospace pioneers a long-range VTOL powered by hydrogen—a testament to hybrid propulsion technology.
BluJ Aerospace exemplifies innovative disruption with the potential to transform urban mobility and substantially reduce environmental impact. Its India-based design and vertical integration translate to a remarkable 50% capital saving compared to US and EU competitors.
In healthcare and life sciences, EyeStem forges ahead with its pioneering cell therapy platform, initially targeting Dry AMD. The startup's groundbreaking research aims to restore vision and revolutionise ocular care worldwide.
By focusing on core IP (iCellDiff), relevant partnerships, and cost efficiency, its first product enters human trials with a mere $4 million investment—7-8 times less than its global counterparts.
Looking ahead, the growth potential in healthcare and life sciences, intelligent mobility, semiconductors, and the digital industry remains enticing and promising. In a world embracing product startups, Indian startups are positioned to play a pivotal role in shaping a transformative landscape.
The industry’s steadfast commitment to nurturing and catalysing startups further cements India's position as a global hub of innovation and technological excellence.
Chandrayaan-3's triumph serves as a powerful reminder of India's inherent capability to push boundaries.
Sateesh Andra is the Managing Director of Endiya Partners.
Edited by Suman Singh
(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)