- September 27 2021
- 5 mins
What makes a unicorn: The Super Founders Do
A unicorn is a venture hitting a $1B valuation. Whether you are a scientist or a college dropout, the resilience of the founder is key to building a unicorn. The tandem of having a combination of a sales, marketing and tech founding team is not enough. More than the immediate acumen, it is the will of a visionary founder that creates new markets and unicorns.
The examples of famous unicorns are good to refer to but one shoe does not fit all in terms of what succeeds and what does not. The experienced researchers in the startup’s space across the world have concluded that the number of co-founders a company has and their age does not have a direct connection to their likelihood of becoming a unicorn eventually. It has been mentioned that:
- 85%: the per cent of companies that eventually became unicorns had competitors at launch.
- 30%: the per cent of founders who had worked in the same industry before.
- 17%: the per cent of unicorns over the past 15 years that outright failed.
- 4%: the per cent of college dropouts, less than the number of PhDs.
- 1.6x: how much more likely a founder with a previous startup failure was to reach a $1 billion valuation compared to a first-timer.
The industry analysis leads to believe that repeat founders were more likely to reach unicorn status as in any other craft that practice makes a team closer to perfection. India is also seeing a flurry of unicorns. As quoted by an article recently “Close to half of India’s billion-dollar-plus tech ventures—26 till mid-August—have emerged in 2021. Two dozen unicorns have emerged in just eight months” so what does the road look like ahead?
Everyone from customers to investors is surprised and elated by the number and pace of unicorns in India. Consider recent ones like Apna, online health and medicine delivery platform PharmEasy is a result of the bullishness investors have for the Indian startup’s ecosystem. With the excess financial liquidity in the marketplace, there seems to be an abundant supply of capital and the development of solid entrepreneurial support ecosystems like MiraiNxt. This financial liquidity has coincided with a rise in high-quality startup founders developing deeptech problem-solving solutions. It seems astounding to note how many new super angels and family offices have started participating in the funding and scaleup rounds of new-age ventures.
The wheel of unicorns in India has just started to churn and the next big waves are coming fast. Since unicorns are getting to be plenty, they may not be as aspirational as before. Seems it’s time India now starts producing decacorns valued over USD 10B. If the current trends are any indicators, by the end of 2023, India might have created an excess of 100 unicorns, thanks to technology and world-class innovation centres being leveraged by the Indian startups.