E-commerce and enterprise are fertile areas for innovators in India right now, as more people begin conducting more transactions online. Other advancements are happening in medicine, wellness, milk, and even beer.
For popularizing e-commerce by helping people sell to their social networks
Meesho fosters entrepreneurship by letting users curate digital boutiques and market and sell to their networks via their social media accounts. The company currently has two million resellers on its platform.
Read more about why Meesho is one of the World’s Most Innovative Companies of 2020.
For boosting tens of thousands of farmers’ productivity by 31% and income by 57% via its ethical sourcing network
Milk Mantra helps track the quality and quantity that milk farmers produce. This information helps the farmers better determine the market value of their product.
For formulating a pediatric AIDS drug that can be sprinkled in food or water
About 80,000 babies and toddlers die of AIDS each year, mostly in Africa, in part because their medicines come in hard pills or bitter syrups that are difficult for small children to swallow or keep down. Indian generic-drug manufacturer Cipla created a new drug, called Quadrimune, which comes in strawberry-flavored granules that can be mixed with water or milk or sprinkled on baby cereal.
For building a B2B marketplace for 2 million retailers in 900 cities to buy direct from manufacturers
Udaan‘s mobile app connects 150,000 traders, wholesalers, and retailers in India, enabling small- and medium-sized businesses to do business directly with manufacturers. Right now, electronics and consumer goods are for sale on the app, and the company, founded by three former Flipkart executives, plans to make industrial goods, fresh fruits and vegetables, office supplies, and more available soon.
For sensing air-quality data to make customized recommendations
Ambee is an air-quality data network. The company’s sensors measure air quality in terms of dust, particulate matter, volatile organic compounds, temperature, humidity, UV light, and sound. This data, which is hyperlocal and crowdsourced, is fed into a proprietary algorithm that learns from the user’s routines and lifestyle and is able to suggest changes.
For enhancing its logistics software by translating ad hoc addresses into precise locations
Locus lets businesses manage their logistics and e-commerce using AI. The company automates tasks that previously required significant human labor, including tracking inventory, transporting goods, and optimizing delivery routes.
For converting voice commands into online orders, overcoming dialect barriers
Niki.ai is India’s first voice- and vernacular-enabled e-commerce platform. Currently, 60% of India’s 390 million internet users decline to make digital transactions online due to language and dialect barriers. With this platform, they can speak into their phone in their own language to order online.
For doubling down on beauty and home services and offering its providers free insurance
A marketplace for freelance labor and home services, Urban Company matches cleaners, repair staff, beauticians, and more with customers across 10 cities in India as well as Dubai and Abu Dhabi. The platform helps offline service workers—who have traditionally relied on finding employment through middlemen or word of mouth—find more work. In addition, they typically keep 80% of the cost of their jobs and can manage their working hours.
For bulking up the gym chain’s wellness offerings with mental health programs and meal plans
Curefit, one of India’s first gym chains, has lowered the barrier for many Indians to start working out. The company recently expanded to focus on wellness, with services including mental health tools and meal plans.
For moving from craft to mass-market beer
The New Delhi-based company released India’s first major craft beer brand, Bira 91. Over the past few years, it followed up with Bira 91 Light and Bira 91 Strong, and in February 2019 it entered the mainstream market with Boom. Read more