India home to 21 Unicorns, valued over $1 billion: Hurun Global Unicorn List 2020

India contributes to the list by adding 21 unicorns in total. with the USA leading China by 233 to 227, together they account for over 78% of the world’s unicorns. They are followed by the UK and India in third and fourth positions.

The Hurun Research Institute today released the Hurun Global Unicorn list 2020, ranking of the world’s billion-dollar tech startups founded in the 2000s. This is the second year of the list and valuations are a snapshot of 31st March 2020.

“India officially has 61 unicorns, of which only 21 are headquartered in India with the remaining started up by Indian Overseas. We hope Hurun Global Unicorn Report 2020 would inspire entrepreneurs in India to create billion-dollar startups, serving the prime ministers call for ‘aatma nirbhar’ Bharat”, Hurun report India MD and Chief researcher Anas Rahman Junaid said. 

Hurun Research found 586 unicorns in the world, based in 29 countries and 145 cities. On average, they were set up 9 years ago, with 80% selling services and 60% consumer-facing. 5% were in traditional sectors, with the majority offering disruptive technology. The total value of all known unicorns in the world is US $1.8 trillion, equivalent to the GDP of Italy.

Where does India stand?

India contributes to the list by adding 21 unicorns in total. with the US a leading China by 233 to 227, together they account for over 78% of the world’s unicorns. They are followed by the UK and India, who stand at the third and fourth positions respectively.

Company NameUSAChinaUKIndiaSouth   KoreaGermany
Number of Unicorns23322724211110
New Unicorns603810362
Years to Unicorn6.55.587117
Source: Hurun Research Institute

Unicorns in India value at $73.2 billion. Fintech company Paytm is India’s highest valued Unicorn at 16 billion dollars. top 10 Indian Unicorns make up 78% of the total value of Unicorns while Paytm alone claims nearly 22 % of the total valuation of the share of these Unicorns, with a valuation of 16 billion dollars.

In which cities are Unicorns based?

City-wise, Bengaluru is India’s unicorn capital with 8 unicorns, followed by Gurgaon and Noida, with 6 and 2 unicorns respectively. Bengaluru contributes to the unicorn list by adding unicorns worth $29 billion in total, while Gurgaon and Noida contribute by $19 billion each. Despite being home to only 2 of India’s unicorns, Noida has a 24% valuation share, with Paytm’s base in the city.

RankCityNumber of UnicornsCity’s Most Valuable UnicornValuation   US$bn
2Gurgaon6OYO Rooms8
5New Delhi1Hike1.0
Source: Hurun Research Institute

Age of Unicorns.

The average age of Indian unicorns in 7 years, of which two are less than four years old. ola electric is the youngest Unicorn on the list, being founded in 2017. it is followed by Udaan which was founded in 2016.

Company NameYear FoundedValuation US$bnValuation change US$bnCore Competence Main Sector
Ola Electric201710Shared Economy
Swiggy20143.50.5On-Demand Delivery
OYO Rooms201383E-commerce
Hike201210Communication Platform
ReNew Power201131.0New Energy
Source: Hurun Research Institute

India has added three new unicorns to the list this year. Paytm is also the highest gainer in the Indian Unicorn category. over a year’s period, the company has managed to increase its valuation by a whopping 6 billion dollars. the next highest gainer is OYO Rooms, who marked up its valuation by $3 billion.

What is their purpose?

India holds the potential to explore the E-Commerce realm as a budding digital market. It’s the number one core business sector for Indian unicorns, wherein 33% of them conduct business; It is followed by Fintech and Shared Economy, which serve as the business sectors for 4 and 2 unicorns from the list.

RankIndustryNo. of Unicorns% of Total Value
3Shared Economy29.5%
5On-Demand Delivery29.5%
6New Energy14.8%
8Big Data14.8%
8Communication Platform14.8%
Source: Hurun Research Institute

Which investors find Indian unicorns the best?

Softbank takes the lead in investment aspect in India by finding and investing in nearly half of Indian unicorns. Alibaba comes next in this category, followed by Tiger Global Management, and Sequoia Capital.

RankInvestorNo.   Of UnicornsHO   CountryKey    
1Softbank9JapanMasayoshi Son, Rajeev Misra
2Alibaba Group5ChinaDaniel Zhang Yong, Eddie Wu
2Tiger Global Management5USAChase Coleman, Scott Shleifer
4Sequoia4USADonald Valentine, Neil Shen
5DST Global3ChinaYuri Milner, John Lindfors
5Tencent3ChinaPony Ma, Lau Seng Yee, Xi Dan
5General Atlantic3USAWilliam Ford
5Temasek Holdings3SingaporeLim BoonHeng
Source: Hurun Research Institute


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