Many large multinational companies (MNCs) have for long been aggressive players in several industries here in India. From pharma to FMCG, from auto to engineering, all have had their fair share of MNCs that have seen the potential in India early on. And have thus set up their operations here to take advantage of this potential. HUL, ABB, Colgate and GSK Pharma are but a few examples of such companies. Their home countries provided them with ample opportunities at the time. Yet, they were some of the few MNCs that kept their faith with India over the years through good times and bad. And they've seen ample rewards for the same.
Now things are different though. Most developed countries are languishing. For them, growth has become a distant dream. Infact, fears of a double dip recession is what they are now staring at. Amongst all this, India is looking forward to touching double digit growth within the next 2 years. Indeed, India has caught the attention of the world.
A recent Wall Street Journal report shows however that big MNCs are not the only ones whose fancy India has caught. A large number of small and medium enterprises (SMEs), including sole proprietorships from Western countries are now making a beeline for India.
The interest is understandable. The Indian market has a large size. It is also a market that is raw and almost untapped in some segments of products and services. This is in direct contrast to many other western countries where most markets and the competition therein are now matured to the hilt.
However, this aspect of the India is not the only one attracting these SMEs from western countries. India's physical proximity to many other untapped markets in other places from Asia, Africa and the Middle East is another unique selling proposition for our country. India's low cost manufacturing and more importantly its vast pool of skilled manpower makes it an ideal destination for such SMEs to set up base here. And to use that base to export goods and services to these emerging markets. A report cites the case of a New York based small enterprise called Astonfield that operates in the renewable energy space. This company has increased the scale of its operations in India at a fast clip recently. Not only that, it has also begun using its India operations as a launching pad for projects in East Africa and South East Asia.
This trend looks like it is unlikely to go away anytime soon. India's time has come. India means huge opportunity for this new breed of investors. But that's only half the story. This influx of knowledge and knowhow into the country will also mean huge opportunities for India and its citizens.