As, the Indian startup ecosystem continues to grow everyday, it faces increasing pressure from key players like Google and Apple, whose rules they have to abide by. This can prove to be a severe disadvantage in some cases. Thus, to solve this problem, several Indian start-ups have joined hands to form Atamnirbhar Digital India Foundation (ADIF) for protection of freedom of choice in the Indian Internet ecosystem.
The founding members of the group include eminent entrepreneurs from the industry including Murugavel Janakiraman (Founder and CEO – Matrimony.com), Snehil Khanor (Co-Founder and CEO of TrulyMadly), Dr. Ritesh Mallik (Founder at Innov8 Coworking) and Amit Sinha (Co-Founder – Unnati).
“We believe it’s high time for all Indian technology companies to come together to safeguard the larger interests of the sector and work towards creating a level playing field.” Said Ajay Data, the Secretary General of ADIF and Managing Director of Data Group of Industries. “We look forward to partnering with fellow Indian technology companies to architect the digital landscape of the country.”
According to Zauba Corp, ADIF was incorporated in Delhi in September last year, with Amit Sinha and Ritesh Malik listed as its directors.
The group plans to quickly create 25 offices across several cities India, and then expand to Tier II and Tier III cities to make sure that local developers join in the cause.
The foundation expressed its objectives by stating that it “aims to assist in the creation of forward-looking regulatory processes & ease of doing business policies to propel India as the top destination for innovation & capital.” It also said, “The association also aims to listen and understand the challenges of the start-up ecosystem and to become the voice of entrepreneurs for policymakers and regulators.”
Initial murmurs about India’s internet start-ups banding together to form a coalition against big tech companies came in October last year due to Google’s controversial policy change for app developers looking to put their products on Play Store. Google had announced that it would charge Indian app-makers a 30% commission on in-app purchases for digital goods.
Reacting to Google’s initiative, Paytm CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma, while launching a Paytm Mini App Store, compared Google to a toll tax collector, and stressed on the need for an Indian app store. There was also bitterness between Paytm and Google since the search engine giant had earlier tried to debar Paytm from its Play Store, citing violation of its anti-gambling rules. “They will always have foreign companies. We want only Indian Internet companies”
ADIF is born out of a rebelling Indian startup ecosystem, and we expect many entrepreneurs to join the drive.