Digital India makes business sense of $200 billion in next five years

Internet users base to touch 500 million in next three years and most of them young

pratap

Pratap Vikram Singh | January 20, 2015 | New Delhi




There is a reason why the government’s Digital India makes business sense. The internet-based economy is set to grow by $200 billion by 2020. This will be four percent of country’s GDP.

According to a study conducted by Boston Consulting Group and IAMAI (internet and mobile association of India) the sector already employs 4 – 5 lakh people and is expected to create nearly 15-20 lakh jobs by 2018.

The projected increase in growth of internet economy owes to the expected increase in number of internet users in India. At present there are 200 million internet users and this is expected to grow to 500 million by 2018, the report titled ‘IndiaDigital.Bharat’ said. 

“The growth in the internet base in India has been exponential. It took 20 years from the introduction of internet to reach 100 million users. The second 100 million will likely be reached within three years, and the third in less than a year. In fact next four years will see nearly 350 million additional internet users,” the report said.

The last 100 million users will be drastically different from the first 100 million on several fronts, the report said. They will be older, more rural, more female, more mobile led, and more vernacular.

“The group will shift from over 60 percent being below 25 years of age to almost 55 percent being 25 years of age or above; from about 30 percent rural to over 50 percent rural; from 60 percent mobile led to over 80 percent mobile-led; from nearly 28 percent women to nearly 35 percent women; and lastly from about 45 percent using vernacular content to more than 60 percent using vernacular content,” the report said.

According to Rajan Anandan, managing director, Google India and chairman, IAMAI, last one year has been fruitful for companies and start ups in internet economy. “E-commerce companies’ revenues were in excess of Rs 25,000 crore at the end of the year,” he said. “Six years back, there was no single billion-dollar Internet company in India; now there are seven of them.”

“They comprise three public companies, Info Edge (India), MakeMyTrip and Justdial, and four private companies—Flipkart, Snapdeal.com, Paytm.com and InMobi.com. There are only three countries, which have more than five Internet companies with billion dollar valuation, India being the third one behind the US and China,” Anandan said.

“India’s growth is interlinked to the Digital India programme. The government is dedicated to creating a digital ecosystem that will enable internet to touch the lives of all Indians,” said communications and IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad.

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