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why india

India has the fastest GDP growth rate

India's economy is growing dynamically and the pace of growth is increasing, while it is slowing in China, for example. This is all the more astonishing as there have been considerable negative impulses in the past two years. The sudden demonetization of the economy and the clumsy introduction of the National Value Added Tax (GST) have processed the Indian economy in an admirable way, which once again shows the difference between China and India: While the development in China seems to be taking place strongly because of the government, India is growing in many areas despite the often very poor governance and still unefficient structures. The strengh of India comes bottom up.

Sources: IMF
Very young population

With an average age of almost 28 years, the Indian population is extremely young. Young people have goals, wishes and needs and a lot of motivation.  Young people have few established habits and sources and are curious about, what is a very advantageous climate for providers of digital products and services.

Sources: CIA Word fact book 2017
Indian online population bigger than entire US population

Already today there are more Indians on the Internet than there are people living in the USA at all. However, this is based on a still rather low online penetration. India's Internet population is growing at an average of 31%, significantly faster than China, for example, or any other major economy in the world.  

Sources: We Are Social, Internet World Stats
Number of internet users growing fast

The number of Internet users in India is growing faster than in any other major country in the world. The pace of growth is increasing and by the end of 2018 more than half a billion Indians are expected to be active in the network. 

Sources: Mary Meeker, Kleiner Perkins
Household consumption is growing strong

Private consumption is not growing as fast in any major economy as in India. Some former BRIC countries are seeing recessionary, negative growth. The growing incomes of the Indian middle class, combined with the rapidly changing structures towards the small family model, are leading to a perfect shopping storm.

Sources: World Bank data
E-Commerce helps to organize the unstructured market

While in western countries trade is largely structured via larger companies, franchises and branches and via organised supply chains, this is far from the case in India.
Only 8% of Indian retailers can be described as "modern" in procurement, presentation and marketing. This is a tremendous opportunity for e-commerce providers.
While shopping malls are being built all over the country that meet modern requirements and the stationary retail trade is growing well (CAGR 32%), e-commerce sales are growing twice as fast in the same period (CAGR 63%).

Sources: Spire Research and Consulting
Growth drivers for e-commerce

When several waves overlap, the perfect wave emerges:

Incomes rise... social structures change and shrinking households need their own equipment... the Internet spreads to the far corners of the country and society... cities grow... consumers develop confidence in the Internet as a source of information and communication... E-commerce is exploding. 

Sources: AECAL
Smartphones become affordable for many more

The presentation of a $4 smartphone in India caused an international media response in 2017. Meanwhile, this scoop has turned out to be fake and deception. 

Indian reality is not much different: The average price of smartphones in 2017 was $157. Many of them were made in China but also in India itself. Of course, the equipment is often rather bad compared to western smartphones, the screens have lower resolution and the storage capacities are much smaller. However, one must bear in mind that the average price in the West is about 3.5 times higher! In the light of that the offered devices are very good and attractive. 

2016/2017 the Reliance Group launched the mobile network Jjio and shocked all long-established competitors with extremely aggressive pricing (data for free!) and aggressive marketing. For Indian consumers, on the other hand, very pleasing times have begun, as prices have fallen very quickly since then. 

Sources: Mary Meeker, Kleiner Perkins, staff reports (data price); IDC (smartphone price)
India is a mobile only market and leads the market in appstores and social

The number of app downloads shows how quickly Indian users have arrived in the Mobile Age. In 2017, more apps were downloaded from app stores in India than in the USA. Nowhere else is the penetration of social media in society stronger and its use is growing faster than in India. As a result there are many opportunities to advertise products and services fully "social". Especially as Indian consumers like to intensively discuss purchases, gather information and talk about product experiences with their peers. 

Sources: App Annie, We Are Social
Mobile momentum through Payment and mobile transactions

India is a real Mobile Only country in many areas. Smart phones are not only used for communication, social media or content. Smart phones are real transaction devices. Banking and shopping with the smart phone are a matter of course. 

Unified Payments Interface (UPI) is an instant real-time payment system developed by National Payments Corporation of India facilitating inter-bank transactions. The interface is regulated by the Reserve Bank of India and works by instantly transferring funds between two bank accounts on a mobile platform on zero cost. 

Sources: Reserve Bank of India
Internet growth by category

Virtually all product segments are experiencing significant e-commerce growth rates. The distribution of digital media products is certainly still suffering from lax ideas about copyrights among Indian consumers. 

Sources: Statista Digital Market Outlook
Internet is still slow but 4G is growing fast.

The biggest barrier to Indian e-commerce is the continued low network speeds of mobile operators. Even in conurbations, good high-speed availability cannot be assumed everywhere. In India, too, there are often unsightly dead spots in rural areas. The rapid expansion of 4G gives hope, but Indian app developers still have to adapt to this situation and take appropriate offline precautions. 

Sources: Speedest, GSMA Intelligence
Mobile Social Media growth: A country every year

In 2018 alone, 63 million Indians have started using social media and growth continues unabated. More Indians use Facebook than in any other country. WhatApp is ubiquitous in Indian life. 

Sources: Facebook, Tencent, Vkontakte, Kakao, Naver, Ding, Techrasa, Similarweb, Kepios Analysis
Social Media Ecosystem

Among the top 10 most used social media apps there is no Indian offer. Facebook, Youtube and Whatsapp dominate the field. The Indian Hike, however, is far behind. As desirable as a local player would be for the Indian ecosystem, it is so easy to understand the localities of action for European investors.

Sources: Global Web Index, Q2 & Q32 2017, based on a survey of internet users aged 16–64

portfolio

We invest in good entrepreneurs, whom we accompany intensively on their way. We are looking for attractive market segments that are opening up from the Indian growth momentum. We like transactional business models and believe that tech and commerce are two sides of one medal. Since our launch, we have built a handpicked portfolio and have seen several pleasing exits already. 

StalkBuyLove
Clovia
Niki.ai
Intentico.ai
Shieldsquare
Newsbytes
Gamezop
Flintobox
ixigo
Greymeter
InstaLively
StalkBuyLove

Fully vertically integrated fast fashion brand for modern Indian women, with a unique responsive and fully digital built out supply chain.

Clovia

Fast growing fully vertically integrated fast underware and lingerie online shopping destination with a growing network of franchise real world shops

Niki.ai

Innovative voice enabled intelligent shopping agent with very capital efficient distribution model through banking apps, wallets and other financial service providers. Fast growing and with full stack tech from natural language processing to process handling of orders.

Intentico.ai

Full stack tech platform for customer service automation through Chat, E-Mail and other contact points and other applications of conversational interfaces via Text or Voice

Shieldsquare

Protecting online content and businesses from abuse and theft: Content protection and Price scraping solution. Offering a unwanted bot mitigation system to international large corporations.

Newsbytes

Automated and Machine Learning base news aggregation and News distribution service providing everyday news in a contextual timeline to reduce information overload.

Gamezop

Casual games aggregator and provider of end2end services for international online services, mobile operators, airline carriers and more. 

Flintobox

Award winning activity boxes filled with fun exploratory activities and games for children. Curriculum provision for operators of pre-schools

ixigo

Travel search operator and provide of multiple mobile travel apps

Greymeter

Micro-Internships platform serving universities and colleges

InstaLively

Hassle free HD end-to-end streaming platform with full integration into Youtube and prepared for lower bandwidth in rural India.

about us

Because we invest ourselves, we know India and invite partners to invest with us. We also offer our market knowledge in selected questions in consulting projects.

Weil wir selbst investieren, kennen wir Indien und laden Partner ein, mit zu investieren. In ausgewählten Fragestellungen bieten wir unsere Marktkenntnis auch in Beratungsprojekten an.

Consulting

We know Digital Transformation from the very beginning and have supported German and European companies in countless projects in coping with practical challenges in this context through consulting since the mid 90ties.

Since the beginning of 2014 we have been supporting a number of European companies in understanding the Indian digital ecosystem, preparing market studies in their specific Industries, developed market entry strategies and helping in the search and selection of suitable employees and business partners in India. 

To make this possible, AECAL draws on a pool of well-informed and networked people from the communities  in Bangalore, Delhi, Hyderabad, Chennai and other local tech hubs.

Wir kennen das Themenfeld der digitalen Transformation von Anbeginn und haben in zahllosen Projekten Deutsche und Europäische Unternehmen bei der Bewältigung konkreter Herausforderungen in diesem Zusammenhang durch Beratung unterstützt.

Seit Anfang 2014 unterstützen wir Europäische Unternehmen beim Verständnis des Indischen digitalen Ökosystems und erstellen Marktstudien, Markteintritts-Strategien und helfen bei der Suche und Auswahl geeigneter Mitarbeiter und Geschäftspartner in Indien. 

Um dies zu ermöglichen greift, AECAL auf einen Pool von gut informierten und vernetzten Personen aus der Szene aus Bangalore, Delhi, Hyderabad, Chennai und anderer lokaler Tech-Hubs zurück.

Investing

We know investing in the digital ecosystem for more than 20 years. Since the beginning of 2014, we have invested in a total of 10 Indian startups and in many cases invited European co-investors to invest together with us.

We are pleased to say that in the past 5 years we have achieved two significant exits for ourselves and our co-investors and have seen very attractive follow-on investments by renowned institutional investors in all active portfolio companies, whos valuations have developed greatly through this.

Wir kennen das Investieren im digitalen Ökosystem seit 20 Jahren. Seit Anfang 2014 haben wir in insgesamt zehn indische Startups investiert und dabei in vielen Fällen Europäische Co-Investoren eingeladen gemeinsam mit uns zu investieren.

Wir sind erfreut sagen zu können, daß wir in den vergangenen 5 Jahren zwei signifikante Exits für uns und unsere Co-Investoren erzielen konnten, sowie bei fast allen aktiven Portfolio-Firmen sehr attraktive Follow-On-Investments durch namhafte institutionelle Investoren gesehen haben.

Founding Partner Peter Kabel

  • Teaching Professor for Media Communications at Hamburg University of Applied Sciences
  • Serial Internet- and Media Entrepreneur (Kabel New Media, Trendbüro, Büro Hamburg, Tone Consultants)
  • Experienced Investor in European and Indian Startups (i.a. Ixigo)
  • Active in India for 15 years
  • Professional background in Consulting, Design and Marketing
  • Professor für Medienkommunikation an der Hochschule für Angewandte Wissenschaften in Hamburg
  • Serienunternehmer in den Bereichen Internet und Medien (Kabel New Media, Trendbüro, Büro Hamburg, Tone Consultants)
  • Erfahrener Investor in Europäische und Indische Startups (u.a. Ixigo)
  • Seit mehr als 15 Jahren in Indien aktiv
  • Hintergrund in der Unternehmensberatung, Design und Marketing

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