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ASK PRIVATE WEALTH HURUN INDIA FUTURE UNICORN INDEX 2022

Indian Start-up ecosystem is the third-largest in the world in the number of Unicorns and is now home to more than 69,000 start-ups (2nd May 2022), according to the data provided by the Union Ministry of Commerce & Industry. In the first half of 2022, India has given birth to 20 Unicorns with a total valuation of US$26bn.

The objective of ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 is to highlight India’s fast-growing start-up ecosystem to investors, governments, family offices, aspiring entrepreneurs, and the international community. Hurun Research Institute has classified start-ups as Unicorns (start-ups founded after the year 2000 with a valuation of US$1bn), Gazelles (start-ups that are most likely to go Unicorn in the next two years), and Cheetahs (start-ups that could go Unicorn in the next four years). The evaluation is based on regulatory filings, feedback from other entrepreneurs, and some of the active India-focused VC funds and angel investors.

In search of India’s Gazelles and Cheetahs

India is currently home to 84 Unicorns, 51 Gazelles, and 71 Cheetahs, as against 51 Unicorns, 32 Gazelles, and 54 Cheetahs in the 2021 index.

India’s future Unicorns are currently worth US$49bn, with an increase of 36% as compared to last year.

17 Gazelles and 7 Cheetahs, from last year’s index, hit Unicorn valuation this year.

Double Promotion: Seven Cheetahs from the last year’s index, “skipped” the Gazelle stage and directly entered the Unicorn club this year.

Logistics tech start-up Shiprocket is the most valuable Gazelle.

Online furniture platform Pepperfry and payment infrastructure start-up Juspay are the most valuable Cheetahs.

Bengaluru continues to be the start-up capital of India. The city is home to 46 probable Unicorns and is followed by Delhi NCR (25) and Mumbai (16).

21 Indian future Unicorns have overseas headquarters, 18 in the USA, two in Singapore, and one in the UK.

E-commerce, FinTech, and SaaS comprise 43 percent of the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022.

Financial services, Logistics, Healthcare, and Education are the sectors disrupted most by the future Unicorns.

Having invested in 39 probable Unicorns, Sequoia is the most active investor in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 and is followed by Tiger Global with stakes in 27 future Unicorns.

Nine Gazelles and eight Cheetahs featured in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 made profits in FY 2021.

Companies featured in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 employ more than 82,300 people.

19-year-old Kaivalya Vohra, the co-founder of quick commerce start-up Zepto, is the youngest co-founder in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022.

Where did they study? Indian Institute of Technology (90) and the Indian Institute of Management (32) top the index of institutes that produce successful start-up founders.

Hurun Research Institute today released the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

(29 June 2022, Bengaluru, India) The Hurun Research Institute today released the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022, a ranking of India’s start-ups founded in the 2000s, worth at least US$200mn, not yet listed on a public exchange and most likely to ‘go Unicorn’ within two years (Gazelles) or four years (Cheetahs). The cut-off date was 31 May 2022.

ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 is a snapshot of India’s start-up ecosystem. This is an index of the most valuable private equity or venture capital-funded companies in India founded after 2000, ranked according to their latest funding round valuation.

To feature in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022, the start-up is required to have a minimum valuation of US$200mn (INR 1,500 crore).

Hurun Research found 122 Indian future Unicorns from 25 cities. On average, they were set up in 2015, with the vast majority selling software and services, with only 17% selling physical products. 37% are selling to businesses, while 63% are consumer-facing. Future Unicorns were seen disrupting financial services, logistics, healthcare and education.

Speaking at the launch, Rajesh Saluja, CEO & MD, ASK Wealth Advisors Pvt Ltd said, “India has emerged as the third largest ecosystem for start-ups after US and China, and saw a record 44 start-ups turning Unicorns in 2021. New ideas and innovations which have the potential to benefit millions of consumers are being incubated by the start-up ecosystem.” 

“The ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn list showcases the leaders of tomorrow today. We shine the spotlight on Gazelles & Cheetahs, the rising stars of the start-up ecosystem, and possibly, future Unicorns. 17 Gazelles and 7 Cheetahs from last year’s list hit Unicorn valuation this year. Being a wealth manager of choice, for us this report is not merely a compendium of start-ups, but a reflection of how founders are creating value. The current scrutiny of valuations in this ecosystem, we believe, will help build more sustainable business models in the long-term.” he added.



Anas Rahman Junaid, MD and Chief Researcher, Hurun India said, While working on the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 we realized that the start-up ecosystem in the country is growing at a never-before pace. In just one year, the number of Unicorns in the country has grown by 65%, the number of Gazelles has grown by 59% to 51, and the number of Cheetahs has grown by 31% to 71. Probably the pandemic has hastened the disruption of traditional businesses and helped in the ascendancy of the start-ups. Slowly, the ecosystem is achieving the desired maturity and resilience.”

“There are some concerns in the global economy that can impact the valuations and capital raising ability of Indian start-ups. Moreover, some Indian start-ups are also going for layoffs and cost-cutting measures leading to thoughts of a slowdown in the ecosystem. We believe that there could be a blip in the growth story in the short run, but the long-term potential of the Indian start-up ecosystem remains excellent and resilient. The pinch felt in the valuation exercise and extra scrutiny of deliverables could help in broad basing the system,” he added.

Gazelle: Unicorn in the next two years

Hurun Report defines “Gazelle” as a start-up founded after 2000 and has the potential to go Unicorn in two years. In the next two years, 49 Gazelles from the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 are likely to become Unicorns.

It is the agility and swiftness of the Gazelle that makes it capable of even outrunning the Cheetah.

Take the case of Shiprocket, a LogisticsTech start-up, which leads the Gazelle pack. The start-up provides delivery management service, or simply put, it is a tech-enabled logistic platform that helps SMEs and MSMEs to sell online. The Delhi-based start-up faced its biggest challenge in 2020 when the whole world went into lockdown mode. Shipments of the company formed in 2017 fell by a whopping 95 % in just a few days – enough for its founders to whimper and fold up. Shiprocket demonstrated the ability of a Gazelle in adjusting to the new normal and focussed on the delivery of essential items to survive. After the opening up of the economy, the start-up expanded swiftly and grew at an astounding pace. Shiprocket is the most valuable Gazelle in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 and even managed to get funding during the pandemic.

Zepto, the 10 minutes’ grocery delivery service founded by Aadit Palicha and Kaivalya Vohra innovated quickly with the concept of the dark store model to pick, pack and dispatch goods quickly. Dark stores are basically micro warehouses and are meant for instant deliveries.

The Gazelles in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 have an estimated valuation ranging from US$500mn to US$1bn. The cumulative valuation of Gazelles featured in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 increased by more than 54% year-on-year to US$31bn. Combined, the 51 start-ups in the index have received US$10.1bn of funding.

FinTech sector contributes 13 Gazelles to the index, followed by SaaS with five, EdTech, E-commerce and Shared Economy with four each. Shiprocket, a five-year-old LogisticsTech start-up, leads the Gazelle pack, followed by Turtlemint, Zepto, Ather Energy and Vivriti Capital.

Table 1: Gazelles in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

No.

Company

Year Founded

Total Funding Received (US$mn)

Start-up Sector

1

Shiprocket

2017

355

LogisticsTech

2

Zepto

2021

360

Quick Commerce

3

Turtlemint

2015

200

E-commerce

4

Ather Energy

2013

290

Electric Vehicle

5

Vivriti Capital

2017

190

FinTech

6

Ninjacart

2015

370

AgriTech

7

Dunzo

2015

700

Quick Commerce

8

Rapido

2015

310

Shared Economy

9

ClearTax

2011

140

FinTech

10

Twin Health

2018

200

HealthTech

11

OneCard

2019

225

FinTech

12

Jupiter

2019

155

Neo Bank

13

Scaler

2019

55

EdTech

14

GreyOrange

2011

295

Artificial Intelligence

15

Medikabazaar

2014

180

E-commerce

16

Square Yards

2013

100

E-commerce

17

Smartworks

2016

25

Shared Economy

18

MoEngage

2014

135

SaaS

19

StashFin

2016

345

Neo Bank

20

InCred

2016

255

FinTech

21

Navi Technologies

2018

580

FinTech

22

IndMoney

2018

140

FinTech

23

Rupeek

2015

170

FinTech

24

Money View

2014

110

FinTech

25

Ecom Express

2012

485

Logistics

26

Khatabook

2018

190

FinTech

27

Stanza Living

2017

230

Shared Economy

28

Whatfix

2014

140

SaaS

29

La Renon

2007

45

BioTech

30

Bizongo

2015

240

E-commerce

31

M2P Fintech

2014

110

FinTech

32

Classplus

2018

130

EdTech

33

Progcap

2017

60

FinTech

34

Country Delight

2015

115

AgriTech

35

Gaana

2011

205

Media & Entertainment

36

Inshorts

2013

165

Media & Entertainment

37

Bounce

2014

215

Shared Economy

38

Zupee

2018

120

Gaming

39

Qure AI

2015

60

Artificial Intelligence

40

Healthifyme

2012

100

Fitness

41

HomeLane

2014

115

Consumer Goods

42

Teachmint

2020

120

EdTech

43

DeHaat

2012

195

AgriTech

44

Porter

2014

130

Logistics

45

BrightChamps

2020

50

EdTech

46

Captain Fresh

2019

130

LogisticsTech

47

Atlan

2018

70

SaaS

48

Kissht

2015

140

FinTech

49

Northern Arc

2008

450

FinTech

50

SaaS Labs

2016

75

SaaS

51

Hubilo

2020

155

SaaS

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Cheetah: Unicorn in the next four years

Hurun Report defines “Cheetah” as a start-up founded after 2000 and has the potential to go Unicorn in the next four years.

Cheetahs are the fastest mammals on land over short distances and have exceptional stride length. They are nimble at high speeds, and the length between their steps is six to seven meters and four strides are completed per second.

Hurun classification has been validated in this year’s report as six Cheetahs from the last year’s index, ‘skipped’ the Gazelle stage, and directly entered the Unicorn club.

Who knows, maybe online furniture store Pepperfry might become the next Cheetah to skip the Gazelle stage and become a Unicorn in some months. The company introduced the concept of virtual reality shopping in India and is known for unique initiatives such as the ‘try before you buy service’ and the ‘rent-to-own’ option. The company is also known for its frugality. Pepperfry is on records saying that it is very ‘close to becoming profitable’ and plans to go for an IPO in the next 12-18 months.

Bengaluru-based Cheetah Juspay came into focus when SoftBank led a US$60mn fundraising round. Founded by Vimal and Ramanathan RV, FinTech start-up Juspay is one of the contributors to the BHIM App and is known to improve the user experience for billions of payment transactions. Juspay has been building foundational infrastructure by unifying and enhancing hundreds of diverse payment options in a neutral way.

Likewise, Ratan Tata-backed FinTech Mswipe could also leapfrog into a Unicorn if its plans of becoming a digital SME bank happen quickly. Founded in 2011, the start-up offers a POS (Point Of Sale) System that lets businesses accept all types of digital payments.

The estimated valuations of Cheetahs in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 range from US$200mn to US$500mn. India is home to 71 Cheetahs that raised a cumulative funding of US$7.7bn. The cumulative valuation of Cheetahs featured in ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 increased by 13% year-on-year to US$17.9bn. With 14 start-ups, FinTech leads the Cheetah index, followed by e-commerce with 10.

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Table 2: Cheetahs in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

No.

Company

Year Founded

Total Funding Received (US$mn)

Start-up Sector

1

Pepperfry

2011

285

E-commerce

2

Juspay

2012

90

FinTech

3

Mswipe Technologies

2011

100

FinTech

4

Pixis

2018

125

Artificial Intelligence

5

SUGAR Cosmetics

2012

85

Consumer Goods

6

WayCool

2015

220

AgriTech

7

ZestMoney

2015

120

FinTech

8

Bluestone

2011

100

E-commerce

9

Cuemath

2013

120

EdTech

10

WinZo

2018

110

Gaming

11

Absolute Foods

2016

115

AgriTech

12

Curefoods

2020

160

Cloud Kitchen

13

FarEye

2013

150

LogisticsTech

14

Ixigo

2006

70

E-commerce

15

Pocket FM

2018

95

Media & Entertainment

16

Freshtohome

2015

150

E-commerce

17

CleverTap

2013

80

SaaS

18

Wakefit

2016

60

Consumer Goods

19

Chalo

2014

60

Transportation

20

Capital Float

2013

200

FinTech

21

Uni Cards

2020

90

FinTech

22

GoMechanic

2016

60

E-commerce

23

CityMall

2019

110

E-commerce

24

Fi

2019

75

Neo Bank

25

Practo

2008

230

HealthTech

26

Bira 91

2015

210

Food & Beverages

27

boAt

2016

115

Consumer Goods

28

Quizizz

2015

50

EdTech

29

Locus

2015

80

Artificial Intelligence

30

Wow! Momo

2008

55

Restaurant

31

Fashinza

2020

125

Manufacturing as a service

32

Bankbazaar.com

2008

115

E-commerce

33

OkCredit

2017

85

FinTech

34

Pratilipi

2015

80

Media & Entertainment

35

iD Fresh Food

2005

100

Food & Beverages

36

Chaayos

2012

40

Restaurant

37

Lendingkart

2014

265

FinTech

38

MedGenome

2013

135

HealthTech

39

Shadowfax

2015

120

Logistics

40

Capillary Technologies

2008

100

SaaS

41

SirionLabs

2012

145

SaaS

42

Plum

2013

50

Consumer Goods

43

Toothsi

2018

90

HealthTech

44

Cashify

2013

80

E-commerce

45

AgroStar

2013

110

AgriTech

46

Avataar

2016

50

RetailTech

47

MoneyTap

2015

40

FinTech

48

Aye Finance

2014

610

FinTech

49

Coverfox Insurance

2013

50

E-commerce

50

CareStack

2015

75

SaaS

51

Zolve

2020

55

FinTech

52

Smallcase

2015

60

FinTech

53

Ezetap

2011

50

FinTech

54

WOW Skin Science

2016

125

Consumer Goods

55

Ultraviolette

2014

20

Electric Vehicle

56

Jar

2021

35

FinTech

57

Furlenco

2012

230

E-commerce

58

Jiffy.ai

2012

70

Artificial Intelligence

59

LambdaTest

2017

70

Cloud

60

Refyne

2020

105

FinTech

61

Servify

2015

50

Consumer Services

62

Carbon Clean Solutions

2009

215

CleanTech

63

Jai Kisan

2017

50

Neo Bank

64

Pixxel

2019

35

Aerospace

65

Exotel

2011

90

SaaS

66

Koo

2020

45

Social Media

67

EarlySalary

2015

35

FinTech

68

K12 Techno Services

2010

20

EdTech

69

LocoNav

2016

45

SaaS

70

Acceldata

2018

45

Artificial Intelligence

71

Yellow.ai

2016

100

Artificial Intelligence

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Top investors

“We help the daring build legendary companies”, is the tagline of venture capital (VC) firm Sequoia Capital. Sequoia, one of the world’s largest venture capital firms, believes in partnering early when the start-up’s DNA is just beginning to take shape. And we at Hurun believe that the credo is working for it. With 41 investments, Sequoia is the leading investor in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022. It has some blockbusters in its kitty like Classplus, DeHaat, Porter, Progcap and CityMall.

Tiger Global’s mission is to generate world-class investment returns over the long term. It is the second-biggest investor in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 having invested in 21 start-ups and has an interesting portfolio that includes GreyOrange, Captain Fresh, and MoneyView.

Early and growth-stage VC firm Accel has the motto of ‘First partner to exceptional teams everywhere’. Accel has invested in 19 start-ups that feature in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022. Bounce, Ninjacart, and CleverTap are the prominent start-ups that have received funding from them. Accel usually comes in at seed stage and then keeps on making follow-on investments. It is the first VC firm to back companies such as Acko, Blackbuck, BookMyShow, Bounce, BrowserStack, Moglix, and Rupeek among others. The start-ups in ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 have raised US $17.7bn funding till now from 115 investors.

Table 3: Top ten investors in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Rank

Investor

No. of Investments

Main Investments

1

Sequoia

39

Classplus, DeHaat, Porter, Progcap, CityMall

2

Tiger Global Management

27

GreyOrange, Captain Fresh, MoneyView

3

Accel

21

Bounce, Ninjacart, CleverTap

4

InnoVen Capital

16

GreyOrange, HealthifyMe, Porter

4

Blume Ventures

16

GreyOrange, Dunzo, Locus

6

Trifecta Capital Advisors

15

Ninjakart, DeHaat, Country Delight

7

Eight Roads

14

Whatfix, SaaSLabs, Shadowfax, CareStack

8

Alteria Capital

13

Curefoods, Chaayos, Stanza Living, MoneyView

9

Elevation Capital

12

Uni Cards, Country Delight, Chaayos

10

Matrix Partners

10

Stanza Living, Zupee, Mswipe Technologies

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022



Portfolio of Angel Investors

The investor of today does not profit from yesterday’s growth-Warren Buffett

Angel investors are very critical at the seed stage. The basic reason for any start-up to look for angel investors is to meet the operational expenses during the formation years and also to attain scalability for their products or services. And many have risen to the occasion to provide capital for needy but deserving business start-ups. From just a few individual investors a decade back, India is now home to thousands of angel investors. The successful listing of start-ups has helped a lot and the ecosystem has matured and become buoyant.

CRED founder Kunal Shah and Rohit Bansal top ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 with 10 future Unicorn investments. They are followed by Kunal Bahl with nine future Unicorn investments. Binny Bansal and Anand Chandrasekaran have also invested in four future Unicorns each.

Ratan Tata, the chairman emeritus of the Tata Group – turned angel investor, has invested in three start-ups in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022. According to market reports Tata has invested in over 30 start-ups, including Ola Electric, Paytm, and Zivame, in his personal capacity and some via his investment company.

Table 4: Top five angel investors in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Rank

Angel Investors

No. of Investments

Main Investments

1

Kunal Shah

10

Shiprocket, Classplus, Curefoods, Khatabook

1

Rohit Bansal

10

Jupiter, Bira 91, Khatabook, Fashinza

3

Kunal Bahl

9

Jupiter, Bira 91, Rapido, Shadowfax

4

Binny Bansal

4

Rupeek, Curefoods, Exotel, Inshorts

4

Anand Chandrasekaran

4

Khatabook, OneCard, SaaS Labs, LocoNav

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Sector analysis

With 26 start-ups in the index, FinTech contributed the most number of companies in ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022, followed by E-commerce 14 and SaaS 10. Around half of the companies featured in the index are FinTech, E-commerce, SaaS and EdTech. AgriTech, Artificial Intelligence, HealthTech, and Shared Economy are the other promising sectors in the Indian start-up ecosystem.

Table 5: Top 10 Sectors in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Rank

Start-up Sector

No. of Companies

Cumulative Valuation (US$mn)

No. of Gazelles

 

No. of Cheetahs

1

FinTech

27

11,550

13

 

14

2

E-commerce

14

6,130

4

 

10

3

SaaS

11

2,900

5

 

6

4

EdTech

7

3,020

4

 

3

4

Artificial Intelligence

7

2,150

2

 

3

6

AgriTech

6

2,870

3

 

3

6

Consumer Goods

6

2,080

1

 

5

8

Neo Bank

5

1,940

2

 

3

9

Shared Economy

4

2,620

4

 

9

Media & Entertainment

4

1,770

2

 

2

9

HealthTech

4

1,550

1

 

3

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022



FinTech. There are 27 FinTech future Unicorns in India. More than 50% of the FinTech future Unicorns are in the consumer lending business. Vivriti Capital is the most valuable FinTech Gazelle, and Juspay is the most valuable FinTech Cheetah. The FinTech start-ups in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 have raised a total investment of US$4.6bn. FinTech dominates with US$11.5bn or 24% of the total value of all future Unicorns.

E-commerce. There are 14 e-commerce future Unicorns with a total value of US$6.1bn. The most valuable E-commerce Gazelle is Turtlemint, and the most valuable E-commerce Cheetah is Pepperfry. The E-commerce start-ups in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 have raised a total investment of US$2bn.

SaaS. With ten future Unicorns, SaaS is the third biggest sector. The most valuable SaaS Gazelle is MoEngage, and the most valuable SaaS Cheetah is CleverTap. The SaaS start-ups in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 have raised a total investment of US$1.1bn.

EdTech has seven future Unicorns, making it the fourth largest sector with 5.8% of the future Unicorns. The total value of all EdTech future Unicorns comes to US$3bn or just under 6.3% of the total value of all future Unicorns. The most valuable EdTech Gazelle is Scaler, and the most valuable EdTech Cheetah is Cuemath.

Artificial Intelligence boasts seven future Unicorns, up from four in the previous year. Artificial Intelligence future Unicorns are worth US$2.2bn or 4.5% of the total value of all future Unicorns. The AI start-ups in the index have raised a total investment of US$770mn. The most valuable AI Gazelle is GreyOrange, and the most valuable AI Cheetah is Pixis.

Where are they headquartered?

Bengaluru has the third-highest number of tech start-ups in the world. It has a well-developed ecosystem, deep technology talent, and respect for entrepreneurship. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 has 46 start-ups with headquarters in Bengaluru. With a cumulative valuation of US$18.4bn, Bengaluru is the home to 16 Gazelles and 30 Cheetahs. It has many Unicorns and will continue to remain the Unicorn capital of India.

Bengaluru is followed by Delhi NCR and Mumbai. Start-ups in the current Hurun Index with their base in Delhi NCR have a cumulative valuation of US$12bn. Mumbai with a cumulative valuation of US $7bn has 16 start-ups in the index.

Interestingly, the top three cities account for 71 percent of future Unicorns in ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022.

Table 6: Top five Indian cities in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Rank

City

No. of Companies

Main Company

Cumulative Valuation (US$mn)

1

Bengaluru

46

Ninjacart

18,400

2

Delhi NCR

25

Shiprocket

12,000

3

Mumbai

16

Zepto

7,040

4

Chennai

5

Vivriti Capital

2,230

5

Pune

3

OneCard

960

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Youngest & oldest start-up founders

When it comes to the spirit of entrepreneurship age is not a barrier or an advantage. It is the strength of your concept and conviction that counts. The youngest start-up founder in the index is Kaivalya Vohra, aged 19, of Quick Commerce Gazelle, Zepto. His co-founder Aadit Palicha is just months older at 20. Both of them are dropouts from Stanford University, and while quarantined in Mumbai during the lockdown came up with the idea of Zepto, which is essentially a 10-minute grocery delivery company.

The oldest founder in the index is K Satyanarayana, aged 61, of Ecom Express. The average age of Indian start-up founders in the index is 38. There are 18 start-up founders aged under 30 and 19 aged above 50.

Table 7: Youngest founders in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Name

Age

Start-up founded

Gazelle/Cheetah

Kaivalya Vohra

19

Zepto

Gazelle

Aadit Palicha

20

Zepto

Gazelle

Awais Ahmed

24

Pixxel

Cheetah

Kshitij Khandelwal

24

Pixxel

Cheetah

Dilsher Singh

26

Zupee

Gazelle

Siddhant Saurabh

26

Zupee

Gazelle

Harikrishna Valiyath

27

Pixis

Cheetah

Anshuman Kumar

27

Teachmint

Gazelle

Misbah Ashraf

28

Jar

Cheetah

Aditya Prasad

28

OkCredit

Cheetah

Shubham A Mishra

28

Pixis

Cheetah

Neetish Sarda

28

Smartworks

Gazelle

Sanjay Dasari

28

WayCool

Cheetah

Vrushali Prasade

28

Pixis

Cheetah

Vatsal Rustagi

29

Classplus

Gazelle

Rishabh Karwa

29

GoMechanic

Cheetah

Bikash Dash

29

Classplus

Gazelle

Divyansh Bordia

29

Teachmint

Gazelle

See also  Cyber-Security Startup Sequretek raises fresh funding of Rs 27 crores from Unicorn India Ventures

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Table 8: Oldest founders in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Name

Age

Start-up founded

Gazelle/Cheetah

K Satyanarayana

61

Ecom Express

Gazelle

Sanjay Sharma

60

Aye Finance

Cheetah

Sam Santhosh

60

MedGenome

Cheetah

TA Krishnan

58

Ecom Express

Gazelle

Sanjay Swamy

57

Ezetap

Cheetah

Ketan Malkan

57

Medikabazaar

Gazelle

Manju Dhawan

56

Ecom Express

Gazelle

Shripati Acharya

55

Ezetap

Cheetah

Bhaktha Keshavachar

55

Ezetap

Cheetah

Manish Patel

55

Mswipe Technologies

Cheetah

Ajay Agrawal

55

SirionLabs

Cheetah

Vivek Parasuram

52

HomeLane

Gazelle

Pankaj Singh

52

La Renon

Gazelle

Srikanth Iyer

51

HomeLane

Gazelle

Abdul Nazer

51

iD Fresh Food

Cheetah

Sanjay Aggarwal

51

Money View

Gazelle

Vikram Jetley

50

Aye Finance

Gazelle

Bhupinder Singh

50

InCred

Cheetah

Babu Sivadasan

50

Jiffy.ai

Cheetah

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Women-led future Unicorns

More and more women in India are chasing the entrepreneurial dream and flourishing in their ventures. Nykaa, led by a solo woman entrepreneur, became the first Unicorn to go public. The latest Unicorn, Open has two-women co-founders alongside two male co-founders.

Fifteen companies featured in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 have a woman co-founder. Women entrepreneurs have co-founded five Gazelles and 10 Cheetahs. Pratilipi is the only company in the index with two women co-founders.

Aged 28, Vrushali Prasade of Pixis is the youngest woman co-founder featured in ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022. Pixis is a company providing codeless AI infrastructure for marketing.

At the top of the index is Kanika Gupta. Gupta is the Co-founder and COO of PropTech aggregator Square Yards. She is an alumnus of Wharton Business School.

Manju Dhawan, co-founder of Ecom Express was the first entrepreneur in her family.

Table 9: Women-led future Unicorns in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

No.

Company

Women Entrepreneur

Gazelle/Cheetah

1

Square Yards

Kanika Gupta

Gazelle

2

Ecom Express

Manju Dhawan

Gazelle

3

Progcap

Pallavi Shrivastava

Gazelle

4

Northern Arc

Kshama Fernandes

Gazelle

5

Atlan

Prukalpa Sankar

Gazelle

6

SUGAR Cosmetics

Vineeta Singh

Cheetah

7

Pixis

Vrushali Prasade

Cheetah

8

ZestMoney

Priya Sharma

Cheetah

9

Bluestone

Vidya Nataraj

Cheetah

10

WinZo

Saumya Singh Rathore

Cheetah

11

Chalo

Priya Singh

Cheetah

12

Bankbazaar.com

Rati Shetty

Cheetah

13

Pratilipi

Nalinee Choudhary, Sahradayi Modi

Cheetah

14

SirionLabs

Kanti Prabha

Cheetah

15

Toothsi

Arpi Mehta

Cheetah

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Alumni of start-up founders

IIT Delhi is the leading undergraduate institute that schooled 22 future Unicorn co-founders, followed by IIT Kharagpur with 18 co-founders. IIM Ahmedabad (13) is the most favoured post-graduate institute of future Unicorn co-founders in the index. With four start-up co-founders, Harvard University is the top foreign university in the top ten. Stanford University and INSEAD have three alumni each.

Table 10: Top Institutes from which the founders in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 graduated

Alumni Graduation

No. of Start-up founders

Main Start-ups

IIT Delhi

22

Teachmint, Qure AI, Navi Technologies, Inshorts

IIT Kharagpur

18

Vivriti capital, Stanza Living, Inshorts, DeHaat

IIT Bombay

18

Turtlemint, Teachmint, Rupeek, Khatabook

University of Mumbai

17

Turtlemint, Jupiter, Dunzo, Cleartax

BITS Pilani

14

Pratilipi, Pixxel, GreyOrange, Exotel

IIT Madras

10

HomeLane, MoneyTap, MedGenome, CleverTap

IIT Kanpur

9

Zupee, Porter, OkCredit, ixigo

Anna University

7

Ninjacart, Pratilipi, Juspay, Bankbazaar.com

IIT Roorkee

6

Wakefit, MoneyTap, Classplus, CityMall

Bangalore University

5

LambdaTest, Ezetap, Bounce, Atlan

University of Delhi

5

Smartworks, IndMoney, HomeLane, Chalo

Visvesvaraya Technological University

5

Wakefit, Vivriti capital, Ultraviolette, HomeLane

Delhi Technological University

5

Stanza Living, Pepperfry, GoMechanic, Classplus

Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology

5

Pratilipi, FarEye

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Table 11: Post-graduation Institutes that founders in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 studied at

Alumni Post Graduation

No. of Start-up founders

Main Start-ups

IIM Ahmedabad

13

Stanza Living, Ninjacart, Navi Technologies

Indian School of Business

9

Vivriti capital, MoneyTap, WayCool, OneCard

IIT Kharagpur

6

Porter, smallcase, Locus, Carbon Clean Solutions

IIM Calcutta

6

Turtlemint, WinZo, OneCard, Medikabazaar

IIM Bangalore

6

Vivriti capital, Lendingkart, HomeLane, Aye Finance

BITS Pilani

4

GreyOrange, Pratilipi, Pixxel, Locus

Harvard University

4

WayCool, HomeLane, Ezetap

University of Delhi

4

Pratilipi, Chalo, Avataar

IIT Delhi

3

Fashinza, Chalo, Chaayos

IIM Kozhikode

3

Ninjacart

IIM Indore

3

Country Delight, CityMall

Stanford University

3

Porter, Capital Float

IIT Bombay

3

Rupeek, SirionLabs, Coverfox

INSEAD

3

HomeLane, Bluestone, ixigo

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Number of founders associated with future Unicorns

ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 underscores the importance of having a co-founder. Only 16% of the future Unicorns are led by a solo co-founder. Whereas, almost half of the future Unicorns have two founders. The average number of founders is 2.5 per future Unicorn.

Chart 1: This graph shows the number of future Unicorns broken down by number of founders.

startup chart

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

The Revenue Growth of Indian Gazelles and Cheetahs

The cumulative revenue of companies featured in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 increased by 65% to INR 16,448 crore. Consumer goods Gazelle WOW Skin Science’s revenue skyrocketed 15 times in FY2021 to INR 100 crore from INR 6.5 crore in FY2020. RetailTech Cheetah Avataar and AgriTech Cheetah Absolute Foods increased their top line ten times. Nearly one-fifth of the companies featured in the index doubled their revenue from the previous year. Eight Gazelles and nine Cheetahs featured in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 are profitable in FY 2021.

Table 12: Top ten future Unicorns by revenue growth in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Rank

Company

YoY Revenue Growth (%)

Start-up Sector

Gazelle/Cheetah

1

WOW Skin Science

1440%

Consumer Goods

Cheetah

2

Avataar

1037%

RetailTech

Cheetah

3

Absolute Foods

923%

AgriTech

Cheetah

4

Qure AI

829%

Artificial Intelligence

Gazelle

5

OkCredit

538%

FinTech

Cheetah

6

Progcap

474%

FinTech

Gazelle

7

Smallcase

433%

FinTech

Cheetah

8

Jai Kisan

385%

Neo Bank

Cheetah

9

WinZo

284%

Gaming

Cheetah

10

Classplus

270%

EdTech

Gazelle

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Top funded start-ups

Cumulatively, Gazelles and Cheetahs in the index raised US$17.8bn, an increase of 47% compared to last year. With a US$700mn investment, Dunzo is the most funded Gazelle in India, followed by Aye Finance (US$610mn).

Table 13: Top ten fundraised Gazelles and Cheetahs in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Rank

Company

Total Fund Raised (US$mn)

Latest Funding Round

Key Investors

1

Dunzo

700

Series E

Blume Ventures, Aspada, Google, Alteria Capital

2

Aye Finance

610

Series E

A91 Partners, Falcon Edge Capital, CapitalG, SAIF Partners

3

Navi Technologies

580

Private Equity

Gaja Capital

4

Ecom Express

485

Series E

CDC Group, Partners Group, Warburg Pincus

5

Northern Arc

445

Private Equity

Eight Roads Ventures, IIFL, LeapFrog Investments, FMO

6

Ninjacart

365

Series D

Trifecta Capital Advisors, Tiger Global Management, Accel, Steadview Capital

7

Zepto

360

Series D

Y Combinator, Nexus Venture Partners, Global Founders Capital, Glade Brook Capital Partners

8

Shiprocket

355

Series E

Tribe Capital, InnoVen Capital, BEENEXT, 500 Startups

9

StashFin

345

Series C

Tencent, Abstract Ventures, Fasanara Capital, Uncorrelated Ventures

10

Rapido

310

Series D

Shunwei Capital, Nexus Venture Partners, Westbridge Capital, Battery Road Digital Holdings

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Foreign headquartered Indian Gazelles and Cheetahs

Twenty-One companies, eight Gazelles and thirteen Cheetahs in the index, have overseas headquarters, eighteen in the USA, two in Singapore, and one in the UK. USA-based HealthTech start-up Twin Health tops the table, followed by robotics start-up GreyOrange.

Table 14: Foreign headquartered Indian Gazelles and Cheetahs in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

No.

Company

Country

Start-up Sector

Gazelle/Cheetah

1

Twin Health

USA

HealthTech

Gazelle

2

GreyOrange

USA

Artificial Intelligence

Gazelle

3

MoEngage

USA

SaaS

Gazelle

4

Whatfix

USA

SaaS

Gazelle

5

Atlan

Singapore

SaaS

Gazelle

6

BrightChamps

USA

EdTech

Gazelle

7

SaaS Labs

USA

SaaS

Gazelle

8

Hubilo

USA

SaaS

Gazelle

9

Pixis

USA

Artificial Intelligence

Cheetah

10

FarEye

USA

LogisticsTech

Cheetah

11

CleverTap

USA

SaaS

Cheetah

12

SirionLabs

USA

SaaS

Cheetah

13

Capillary Technologies

Singapore

SaaS

Cheetah

14

CareStack

USA

SaaS

Cheetah

15

Jiffy.ai

USA

Artificial Intelligence

Cheetah

16

Carbon Clean Solutions

UK

CleanTech

Cheetah

17

LambdaTest

USA

Cloud

Cheetah

18

LocoNav

USA

SaaS

Cheetah

19

Pixxel

USA

Aerospace

Cheetah

20

Yellow.ai

USA

Artificial Intelligence

Cheetah

21

Acceldata

USA

Artificial Intelligence

Cheetah

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

ESOP pool – Indian future Unicorns

With an ESOP pool of 13.3%, social media platform Koo is the top ESOP pool creator among Indian future Unicorns, followed by EV start-up Ather Energy with a 10% ESOP pool.

Table 15: Top ten ESOP pool in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Company

ESOP Pool (%)

Start-up Sector

Total Funding Amount (US$mn)

Koo

13.3%

Social Media

45

Ather Energy

10.0%

Electric Vehicle

285

Shiprocket

9.0%

LogisticsTech

350

WinZo

9.0%

Gaming

110

Exotel

8.3%

SaaS

90

Mswipe Technologies

7.0%

FinTech

100

Zupee

7.0%

Gaming

120

Money View

6.4%

FinTech

110

GoMechanic

5.8%

E-commerce

60

EarlySalary

5.0%

FinTech

35

WayCool

5.0%

AgriTech

220

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

How many do they employ?

 

Start-ups from the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 employ more than 82,300 people, an average of 675. Twenty-two future Unicorns have more than 1,000 employees, led by Square Yards with 5,390 employees and Ecom Express with 3,600 employees.

Table 16: Top ten employers in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Rank

Company

Number of employees

Start-up Sector

1

Square Yards

5390

E-commerce

2

Ecom Express

3600

Logistics

3

Shadowfax

3110

Logistics

4

Ninjacart

2560

AgriTech

5

Cuemath

2560

EdTech

6

Mswipe Technologies

2210

FinTech

7

Curefoods

2050

Cloud Kitchen

8

HomeLane

2030

Consumer Goods

9

Rapido

1710

Shared Economy

10

Practo

1580

HealthTech

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Gazelles and Cheetahs turned to Unicorns

More than half of last year’s Gazelles turned Unicorns in 2022. One in every five Cheetahs of last year turned to Gazelles. Twenty-four future Unicorns from last year turned into Unicorns, of which 17 are Gazelles, and seven are Cheetahs.

Table 17: Gazelles that turned Unicorns from the Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2021

No.

Company

Founded Year

Start-up Sector

Total Funding (US$mn)

1

Mobile Premier League

2018

Gaming

375

2

Apna

2019

Enterprise Services

195

3

Vedantu

2011

EdTech

290

4

Licious

2015

E-commerce

490

5

CoinSwitch Kuber

2017

Blockchain

300

6

Rebel Foods

2011

Cloud Kitchen

535

7

MobiKwik

2009

FinTech

180

8

CarDekho

2007

E-commerce

500

9

Acko General Insurance

2016

FinTech

460

10

Cure.Fit

2016

Fitness

675

11

Spinny

2015

E-commerce

515

12

Pristyn Care

2018

HealthTech

180

13

Mamaearth

2016

E-commerce

110

14

Livspace

2014

E-commerce

430

15

Uniphore

2008

Artificial Intelligence

620

16

Games24x7

2006

Gaming

75

17

Open

2017

Neo Bank

190

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Table 18: Cheetahs that turned Unicorns from the Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2021

No.

Company

Founded Year

Start-up Sector

Total Funding (US$mn)

1

MyGlamm

2015

E-commerce

310

2

NoBroker

2014

E-commerce

425

3

Darwinbox

2015

SaaS

110

4

DealShare

2018

E-commerce

625

5

ElasticRun

2015

Enterprise Services

435

6

Xpressbess

2015

Logistics

580

7

Purplle

2011

E-commerce

300

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Table 19: Cheetahs that turned Gazelles from the Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2021

No.

Company

Founded Year

Start-up Sector

Total Funding (US$mn)

1

HomeLane

2014

Consumer Goods

115

2

ClearTax

2011

FinTech

140

3

Jupiter

2019

Neo Bank

155

4

OneCard

2019

FinTech

225

5

Dunzo

2015

Quick Commerce

700

6

Classplus

2018

EdTech

130

7

Rapido

2015

Shared Economy

310

8

Square Yards

2013

E-commerce

100

9

Smartworks

2016

Shared Economy

25

10

InCred

2016

FinTech

255

11

Turtlemint

2015

E-commerce

200

12

Ather Energy

2013

Electric Vehicle

290

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Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Some of the notable exits of future Unicorns

RateGain, MedPlus and FINO Paytech have moved out of ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 as they are listed on the stock exchange. Shuttl and Twenty-Two Motors have moved out of the index as they are acquired by Chalo and Bounce respectively.

Table 20: Notable Exits of Future Unicorns from Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2021

No.

Company

Founded Year

Start-up Sector

Cause

1

RateGain

2004

SaaS

IPO

2

MedPlus

2006

HealthTech

IPO

3

FINO Paytech

2006

FinTech

IPO

4

Shuttl

2015

Transportation

Acquired

5

Twenty Two Motors

2016

Electric Vehicle

Acquired

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Future Unicorns with international presence

More than one-fourth of the future Unicorns featured in ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 have an active overseas presence. Except for Exotel, all the Indian future SaaS Unicorns are headquartered in the USA and Singapore.

Table 21: Top five start-ups that have international presence in the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

No.

Company

Countries of Presence

Start-up Sector

Headquartered

1

MoEngage

9

SaaS

San Francisco

2

M2P Fintech

8

FinTech

Chennai

3

Locus

7

Artificial Intelligence

Bengaluru

4

Capillary Technologies

7

SaaS

Singapore

5

SirionLabs

7

SaaS

New York

Source: Hurun Research Institute. ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022

Interesting facts

  • FinTech Cheetah FINO Paytech was the first Indian payment bank listed on the stock exchanges.

  • IPO of HealthTech Cheetah MedPlus, India’s second-largest pharmacy retailer, was subscribed about 53 times and listed at a 30% premium over the issue price.

  • Ten future Unicorn co-founders graduated from IIT and post-graduated from IIM.

  • Aerospace start-up Pixxel, a satellite-imaging company, launched its first fully operational satellite Shakuntala/TD2 on SpaceX’s Transporter-4 mission in 2022.

Mergers and Acquisitions

  • Shiprocket, a LogisticsTech Gazelle, acquired 80% stake in Pickrr for US$200mn in June,2022 and also acquired supply chain management start-up Glaucus Supply Chainin February,2022.

  • Bus transport technology Cheetah Chalo acquired Shuttl, a bus aggregator for office commute, in an all-cash deal.

  • Bounce, a scooter rental Gazelle, acquired EV start-up Twenty Two Motors.

  • B2B logistics platform Rocketbox, customer data platform Wigzo Tech and SaaS platform Logibricks in 2022.

  • E-commerce Gazelle Turtlemint acquired Pune-based data science start-up IOPhysics Systems.

  • Ninjacart acquired Bengaluru based SaaS communication platform Tecxprt.

Methodology

The ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 is compiled by the Hurun Research Institute with 31st May 2022 as the cut-off. Hurun defines a ‘Future Unicorn’ as a start-up founded in the 2000s that has reached of valuation of less than US$1bn and greater than US$200mn, but is not yet listed on a public exchange.

Hurun Research believes the ASK Private Wealth Hurun India Future Unicorn Index 2022 to be the most serious attempt to capture India’s future Unicorns into one index.

Valuing start-ups can be tricky. The very nature of these superfast-growing companies makes valuation hard to pin down. To ensure consistency of the valuations, the Hurun research team has used the most recent valuation based on a sizeable round. Countries and cities are ranked according to the start-up head office.

The Hurun research team used databases that specialize in recording rounds of investments by the professional investment world, cross-checking the data with some of the world’s top investment houses, industry experts, start-up co-founders, and media sources.

Future Unicorns can drop out from the list either by going public (IPO), being acquired by another company, or dropping in valuation below US$200mn.

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        1. Lifestyle and LuxuryThe Hurun Luxury Consumer Survey debuted in 2019 to encourage an understanding about lifestyle and brand preferences of ultra-high net worth individuals, while curating a survey to help them explain their spending habits.



Globally, the Hurun brand registers an estimated eight billion views, 50% YoY growth, on the back of lists and research reports.

Hurun India serves as India’s definitive voice celebrating wealth creation, innovation, and growth. Last year, Hurun further expanded its repertoire by releasing the Hurun Global Rich List 2022, a ranking of the 3,381 US dollar billionaires, so-called ‘Nine-Zero Club’, currently in the world and the tenth India Rich List which ranks the 1,007 richest individuals in India, allowing for comparisons between some of the most dynamic economies in the world. The purpose of this list is to try and tell the story of modern India through the eyes of an entrepreneur.

For the full details, please refer to www.hurunindia.net

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