In north-western Bengaluru is a noisy, bustling market, selling everything from onions to rice, flour, pulses and sugar. This is the Yeshwanthpur yard, the city’s biggest wholesale market for agricultural produce. It’s also where a startup called Udaan is now a prominent fixture. A business-to-business (B2B) online marketplace, Udaan is used by about 300 of the 2,500 shops in the market, a rough survey shows. Its growing popularity has seen it gain ground on the established vendor of choice, IndiaMART, in just three years of operations.
About nine months ago, Udaan created a stir in the investment community when it became India’s newest unicorn—startups valued at $1 billion or more.