India And Israel Partner To Strengthen Startup Ecosystem
During the three-day visit to Israel, the NASSCOM delegation held discussions to strengthen existing alliances and seek new partnerships. The key focus of the partnership was on security solutions, Internet of Things (IoT) and Innovation. NASSCOM President, R Chandrashekhar, said in a statement:
“There is a unique opportunity for Indian companies to partner with their Israeli counterparts to establish a mutually beneficial association. We are looking at collaborative opportunities with innovative companies based out of Israel and possible partnerships that can scale up operations for companies on both sides.”
Israel has a very strong startup ecosystem that is backed by an impressive innovative climate and a unique cultural characteristic which has proliferated over the years with staunch government support.
The country has companies ranging from IT security, data center and internet solutions which are worked on at, ventures ranging from early-stage startups to established companies. Chanadrashekhr adds:
“The Israeli government grants nearly 80 per cent funds to early-stage startups. The agency running its incubator – which is also assessed by the government – provides about 15 per cent…It will be interesting to know how this model can be incorporated into the Indian startup ecosystem.”
Next week it is expected that there will be discussions with government officials and other stakeholders. Israel currently sees India as a long-term strategic partner that will enable its companies to have a global footprint.
“Small tech companies make up the startup landscape of Israel, whose primary model is to develop a niche product and eventually get acquired. Typically scaling up is a challenge for these companies, but we in India don’t have that problem. Thus, the potential both countries offer for each other is tremendous,” says Chandrashekhar.
On the other hand, India is also exploring the possibility of a joint R&D project for commercial products in sectors like cyber security, technology transfer, engineering solutions, healthcare and agriculture.
“Such alliances will be taken up at the level of individual companies. Tech Mahindra and Cyient already have established projects in Israel, but such an undertaking is proving beneficial even for them. Discussions with such an exhaustive list of people including government officials, entrepreneurs and investors in just 3-day period is no mean feat,” says Chandrashekhar.
India surely can learn from Israel whose impressive startup ecosystem is only preceded by the US. The country’s spent on R&D as a percentage of its GDP is the highest at 4.2 per cent and its technology industry contributes 26 per cent to its overall GDP.
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