Startups and Stardom: Mumbai

Sanskriti Bhatnagar

01 Feb'21

State: Maharashtra
Language: Marathi, Gujarati, Hindi, Tamil, Sindhi
Population: 1,84,00,000 (2011)
Weather: Generally Humid
Food: Vada Pav
Places to Visit: Marine Drive, Gateway of India, Elephanta Caves, Kanheri caves, Haji Ali Dargah
Industry Specialization: Real Estate, Trading, Recruitment


Mumbai, a city full of dreamers and hard laborers is also a center for many religious and political matters. Apart from being the entertainment capital of India, Mumbai is known for its all around the year rains, sometimes setting the mood just right. The city also has a diverse culture that embraces the essence of various festivities and makes sure to enjoy them to the fullest.

Mumbai, The Ecosystem

The Mumbai ecosystem is one of the top emerging ecosystems, with a supportive State Government and a huge population that fosters the city’s startup culture. The startup world is home to many hidden gems with immense talent and passion. Since Mumbai is known to have the most number of billionaires in the country, this fact has created a robust investor base that favors startups.

Some of the most popular sectors for entrepreneurs in Mumbai are e-Commerce, Enterprise Tech, and FinTech. Close to 60% of startups in the city operate within a B2B capacity. Owing to the city’s huge population, it is also a large customer base for startups, especially in the B2C space.

Read more about the various industries of the Mumbai ecosystem –


The city has started to shower all their attention towards Fintech, an industry that has found steady growth in the past few years. The attention comes with good reason, Mumbai is India’s financial capital- housing large banks, financial services, insurance companies, brokerages, hedge funds, and VC funds. Much like Chennai, Mumbai is already home to the highest number of fintech startups in India, according to Tracxn.

A lot of the poster-boys for the Indian Startup ecosystem can be found in Mumbai. They are household names- Quikr, Pepperfry, OlaCabs, Toppr, BookMyShow, JustDial, and Nykaa! There’s always a problem that needs to be solved, and Mumbai doesn’t shy away from doing so with grace and flair.

Mumbai has two unicorn startups- Dream 11 and CitiusTech. Nykaa (USD $13 Mn), Drishti Technologies (USD $25 Mn), Embibe (USD $12.6 Mn), Pepperfry (USD $37 Mn), and Medikabazaar (USD $15.8 Mn) are just a few examples of the kind of investments being regularly made into startups in the city. Where there’s a good amount of investments, there’s a good amount of investors.

Incubators, Accelerators, and Stakeholders

The city of dreams is also the city of billionaires. It has a very well connected network of Angel investors, some operating under the Mumbai Angels Network- where they actively build the understanding of venture investing as an asset class and create platforms where both, founders and investors, can learn, invest and grow.

Not only that, the city houses some of the biggest VC firms in the country! Battery Ventures, Blume Ventures, Clearstone Venture Partners, Eight Roads Capital / Fidelity Growth Partners, Google Capital, and Warburg Pincus are some of the few VC firms on the very long list of VC firms in Mumbai.

Mumbai’s ecosystem is thriving, but organizations like Headstart Mumbai work towards helping build a stronger community amongst all entrepreneurs. They’ve organized events like Startup Saturdays, an amazing platform for networking, motivation, and knowledge, and Women Entrepreneur Mentor Sessions, exclusively for women entrepreneurs. In the past 2 years alone, Headstart Mumbai has impacted 730+ existing and budding entrepreneurs- encouraging them throughout their journey to achieve the best. If you’d like to reach out to our team in Mumbai, email us at

Read more about the startup culture in Mumbai –

The city has an abundance of Incubators and Accelerators as compared to other cities in the country, nay, state. SINE-IIT Bombay, CIBA, NCAIR, and SP-TBI are some of the most well-known academic/governmental incubators in the city. Venture Nursery, thinQbate, JioGenNext, and the Oracle Startup Cloud Accelerator are only a fraction of the non-academic/non-governmental incubators and accelerators in Mumbai.

The Government

The Maharashtra government is very supportive of the startups in their state. They introduced the Mumbai FinTech Hub, to enable financial empowerment and technological advancement across the entire financial ecosystem so as to grow globally competent FinTech firms. In the next three years, the Maharashtra government is looking to incubate at least 300 startups and facilitate VC funding of a minimum of INR 200 Cr. for FinTech startups.

They want to bridge the gap between startups, financial & technology vendors, incubators, accelerators, and investors, and their effort to do so is note-worthy.


Mumbai has faced numerous problems when it comes to migratory startups or the companies that were born in the city but soon shifted to other prominent cities like Bangalore. Tech and Product development is another domain where the city lacks talent. The aim is to help and mentor startups in these areas, making sure that they flourish in the city and are not left behind.

Read more about the ecosystem and how it is leaving a mark –

Overall, the growth of the Mumbai ecosystem has been impressive and deserves to be recognized. The startups have not only evolved from what they were a few years ago, but there are also drastic changes in terms of policies and programs for guiding startups.

It can be said that Mumbai has created an ecosystem where startups have the best shot at building and achieving global success.

Meet Dr. Vaidya’s, a startup that embodies the vibrancy of the Mumbai ecosystem here!

Contributed by:

Anoushka Chopra & Sanskriti Bhatnagar
Headstart Network Foundation

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