Mortal's Symposium Episode 3 (Verbatim)

Mortal's Well-Being Trust successfully organized its third episode of Mortal's Symposium with Mr. Sriram Sundaravadanan as the honorable speaker. This interactive session on the topic "Start-up Business: Scenario before the pandemic, current situation and what the future holds" helped in getting a better understanding of this subject. Mr. Kinjalk Sharma, the Founder of this organization, served as the Moderator for Mortal's Symposium Episode-3. Mr. Prabhav Tripathi, the Editor-In-Chief of this organization, served as the Stenographer for Mortal's Symposium Episode-3.

Pre-COVID Scenario:

“From 2015 to 2016, a lot of companies in both technological and non-technological sectors came up with business ideas for startups. They, typically, received very quick funding. Venture capitalists had to go through tough times as their logic to invest into these startups did not yield good results. It led to a sudden shift from extra availability of funding to no funding at all. Companies that had raised money initially could not raise further funds easily. Companies that had started out with fancy offices and a lot of labour force had to cut down all the facilities gradually.

“In 2017, investors got more cautious, approaching startups with a proper business model and a lot of things evolved in those two years. You can see, there has been a substantial growth of significant investment in startups and companies have been able to deliver better to the venture capitalists.”

During the Pandemic:

“In the pandemic there were basically two sectors- healthcare and hyperlocal market- where business did not suffer a halt but instead saw a growth as we needed these services. Apart from these, the other sectors faced tremendous pain. They had no new business orders, working capital cycle slowed down and startups did not have sufficient backup for survival. This carried on for more than six months. The messed up cash flows did not enable them to pay full salaries. We had a lot of companies going down; a lot of jobs were lost. There has been substantial erosion in all the fields.”

“In delivering companies like Zomato, the business ramped up but the number of employees they had, including the delivery boys, came down considerably. The current market is in a lot of stress but even in such times, we have seen large corporate like Reliance raised millions of dollars. So, it is not like money is not available but money is chasing only good projects right now.”

Post-COVID Expectations:

“The boycott China movement in International Trade will give a great opportunity to young Indian entrepreneurs and their startups to get the best benefits from this golden chance. Government has already started stepping in for self-reliance in this sector. There may not be new sectors but existing sectors with ‘new needs.’ Along with healthcare, many other sectors have generated such new needs with changing times. In my opinion, the world is going to move away from China in the post-COVID scenario.

“We can clearly see that countries like US, Canada, India , Australia, EU are all big markets and are moving away from Chinese trade markets while focusing on becoming self-dependent. If we see it from the perspective of a supply chain, China handles around 80% of the global business as of now. I am very confident that till the year 2022, India will increase its business outreach to 10-15% more and attract investments from all around the world.”