India outdoing China in producing new tech unicorns, while Pakistan awaits its first homegrown unicorn

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India is rapidly closing the gap with China in minting new unicorns – privately held startups with value reaching up to $1 billion or more.

Over the course of the past year, 15 companies from India raised capital at a valuation of $1 billion or more for the first time, according to Nikkei Asia. 10 of them had become unicorns in 2021. By comparison, only two of the 15 companies from China that joined the list over the past year did so in 2021.

India’s digital economy has lagged behind China, but its rapidly catching up.

China still dominates the overall unicorn list in Asia with 138 unicorns, more than four times the number in India. Some of China’s biggest unicorns are also much larger in size, such as Tiktok operator Bytedance, which has a valuation of $140 billion. However, India’s biggest unicorn is One97 Communications, the mobile payments app Paytm, worth $16 billion.

On the other hand, Pakistan has only three unicorns in the form of Careem valued at $3.1 billion, Afiniti at $1.6 billion, and KeepTruckin valued at $1.25 billion. However, these companies have either been started by non-resident Pakistanis or operate out of the Silicon Valley. Pakistan still awaits its first homegrown unicorn.

Source: Nikkei Asia

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