Picking bets

Inside Y Combinator’s belated India surge

After single digit participants from India during 2014-16, the world’s best accelerator is doubling down on the country with 20 in 2017. Will it pick the next Flipkart?

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Ten years. That’s how long it took the world’s biggest and most successful startup accelerator programme, Y Combinator (YC), to find the first Indian startup which would make it to its coveted classrooms in California. The year was 2014 and the Indian company was tax filing startup, Cleartax*. If that was to be the year YC would belatedly start paying attention to the Indian startup opportunity, it could not have picked a better one. Because 2014 and 2015 would turn out to be the most exuberant years for Indian startups.

But that was not to be. YC would only…

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