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India is going to be a giant in 2030, says Abdulla Hassan

Abdulla Hassan, CEO, Dhow Capital of Kuwait gave an impassioned talk to the startups at the Alumni association of IIT Kanpur, Pune Chapter’s Startup master class 2018.

pune Updated: Sep 16, 2018 16:18 IST
Namita Shibad
Namita Shibad
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,India,giant
Abdulla Hassan, CEO, Dhow Capital of Kuwait (RAHUL RAUT/HT PHOTO)

Abdulla Hassan, CEO, Dhow Capital of Kuwait gave an impassioned talk to the startups at the Alumni association of IIT Kanpur, Pune Chapter’s Startup master class 2018. Abdulla took some questions from the audience:

What brings Dhow Capital to India?

We look at opportunities. India is going to be a giant in 2030. You will have a workforce of 600 million and that is huge. We would love to invest in businesses that attract this 600 million captive market.

What are the areas you are focusing on?

I am ready to invest even ₹5 lakhs if an idea is good. But generally we are focusing on fintech, consumer based ideas, education and AI. I believe the biggest push to the economy will come from rural markets.

But rural India does not have the spending capacity?

Yes, that may be true but look at China. What did they do? They took it to the villages where the labour was cheap, costs were lower and there was electricity. This I think is the dimension to follow.

What is the success rate of your investments?

In a year, we doubled our investments and three of our companies have become big names in Europe.

What is the difference you see between startups in India and the West?

In the West they have the advantage of having a lot of money. Startups in India started a few years ago and when you say $13 billion was invested in India, it’s not really much, comparatively. What is sad is that seed funding has actually reduced.

Why is that happening?

Essentially because there is no regulator. You need to make sure that certain areas are not overfunded.

As an investor what will you look at?

I will look at seed funding and series a funding. I want to be with entrepreneur even before he needs the funding.

First Published: Sep 16, 2018 16:17 IST