South Asia Subcontinent
Chinese investments in Indian startups skyrocket By Vishweshwar Jatain
In Sino-Indian trade, India is most conspicuously known for being a huge market for electronic goods manufactured by China. Of course, that’s not all that China exports to India—there are also organic chemicals, boilers, milk, fuel and oil.
In 2014, China edged out the United Arab Emirates to become India’s largest trade partner. By 2015, China already accounted for 15.8 percent of all Indian imports, adding up to a total of $61.5 billion. This means that, bilateral political climate aside, the Chinese and Indian economies are inextricably linked to each other.
Trade is only one of the ways money moves between countries in the modern world, though, and it’s a second route that’s been gaining momentum of late: private equity and venture capital.
In 2015, Chinese companies collectively invested $ 3.38 billion into Indian startups. This period marks an inflection point in economic relations between China and India. No longer content just to supply goods to India, China now wants to place bets on India’s growth. Chinese tech giants have invested more in Indian startups in the last two years than they did in the entire preceding decade. Is this sudden interest an anomaly or a trend? Barring a few exceptions, most of the funding coming from Chinese tech giants into technology-based Indian startups in the past two years has been in the mobile, transportation, e-commerce, ad-tech, pharma and energy sectors.
In September 2015, Alibaba invested $680 million in One97, the parent company of Paytm, a popular Indian mobile payment app that consumers can use to pay utility bills, book movie tickets, flights and hotels, and even do their shopping. Later, in collaboration with Taiwan-based
Chinese and Indian colleagues discuss production details at the Indian branch of Chinese accessory supplier Yaoming Zhidai in the city of Visakhapatnam on July 31