2016 marked a golden era for the start-ups. Looking at the Indian start-up scenario, establishing and running a start-up has never been easy. With their now highs and lows, of course different from the traditional ways of doing business, it looks like the Indian start-up industry has hit a bottleneck. With the changing regulations and policies in India while there is ease in doing business, getting the right funding at the right time has become a challenge. There was a time when the investor used to invest only on an idea, but today they have become very cautious about where to park their funds.
The last few years have been quite positive and supportive, but in the last few months a lot of start-ups have been through a roller coaster ride. Even the well-funded start-ups have been acquired by some other company. The Merger and Acquisition root has been opted by a lot of start-up entrepreneurs due to numerous reasons. Some of them being:
- The 'funding process' has become a big challenge, especially for those who lag in the revenue model. So, in such a scenario, the Founders opt for the merger/acquisition route.
- A lot many times, an innovation in a technology leads to a merger/acquisition. When an established firm finds an opportunity of increasing its revenue through some other company’s technology, the situation of either getting merged or a smaller firm being acquired by a bigger one arises. A lot of times, it is also a strategic decision.
- A lot of start-ups look at merger/acquisition as to root to increase their product reach in the market. In such scenarios, a smart investor often acts as a middleman and acts as a catalyst for the entire process.
- With the everyday increasing competition, start-ups often look at mergers to fight competitor instead of going after each. With continuously living with the pressure and urge of continuously growing mergers and acquisitions often open roads for faster growth and customer acquisition.
The start-ups which fail in either raising funds or taking their idea to the next level; they will be soon seeing their lucky coin flip. Every entrepreneur has been inspired or have learnt lessons from Flipkart, Zomato, Snapdeal, Jabong, Myntra, etc., but even they have seen devaluations time and again, specifically in the last 2-3 years. A lot of changes have been taking place in the operational formats of the start-ups. The financing patterns have also changed and today the investors look for assured revenue making business model and its long-term sustainability. The days for start-ups with weak business models, poor execution strategies, high unjustifiable spending, lack of a strong and stable top management, weak market shares, no concrete plans are about to end!
There came a period when the business mode of the start-ups was totally dependent on the funds of the investor, but now the investor has a lot of questions to ask before they put in any more money. To make through them, the start-ups must plan a new game to survive in the longer run. Along with the basic strategies, a start-up will also have to hold on to their key strengths and nurture them to be their differentiator instead of running after new skills. For start-ups to succeed, it is necessary to be one step ahead of the competition and make the right moves before they do. There is always an alternate strategy to achieve your goal, o think through your plan and make calculative moves. Thus, for a start-up to be on top it is important that you observe your every move and know precisely where you stand right now and where you will be in the next 5 years.