Thinking @ doing business in India? What Next?

doing-business-in-indiaAuthor: Ravi V. Patil, India Director of INDOLINK Consulting

“India is doing great. Nobody talks about it.” Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said in an interview with CNN on Monday 27th Jan.16. His statement carries particular importance knowing his views accusing several countries taking advantage of US particularly China. Steadily, India has overtaken China as fastest growing economy currently with @7.5% growth rate.

 When I meet overseas business delegates during this trips to India, one of the questions I normally ask is “Is this your first trip to India?” and the answer could be: Yes or 2nd, 3rd, 4th…  More than 50% of these delegates, this is their 2nd to 3th  visit to India during last 2-3 years and the purpose is exploring the possibility of doing business in India. They read the news: India offers very good opportunities, its vast market size, its growth rate etc. but at the same time, they read about  bureaucracy, delays and difficulties faced by some of the businessmen who tried it before. It creates a dilemma in their mind- to be or not to be and hence 2nd trip and more trips…  After 2-3 trips they realize that some players had taken the decision to start and now they are settled and doing great.

 It is the fact that India isn’t organized and fast as many other countries, but these are small initial issues. The amount of paperwork and delays is reducing gradually and has already reached a comfortable level. Now it is possible to have a company operative within a span of 1 to 3 months. Instead of over analyzing it makes sense to overview the possibilities and if found feasible start with activities in India, ways could be many:

– Get in touch with consulting companies to seek their assistance to know more and decide strategy.

– Deploy a representative to understand the market, either own person or sub-contract this task.

– Start the market prospection activities, duration could be 6 months to 2 years.

– Based on the info. gathered start with the activities in India.

– In general, almost each sector is growing @ more than 10%, so just a sectoral overview could indicate the potential Indian market offers then instead of delaying it is advisable to start. The earlier one starts, the better it is for him to settle, to know the market and adjust its strategies.

It is important to take a decision and start. Once it is decided to go ahead with the setup project in India, normally steps involved are:

  • Decide entry model ( to form a company, appoint a dealer/distributor, manufacturing or trading, Liaison office, project office…)
  • Decide location ( which state/city)
  • Incorporate legal entity
  • Open bank account
  • Recruit key staff
  • Get in funds
  • Obtain licenses/permissions
  • start operations

The time required for the moment decision is made, till company could start its activities could vary from 6 months to 24 months depending on scope and activities involved.

It is always better done than thought. Some problems will crop up but those will get resolved in the process.

In the nutshell, If you are thinking @doing business in India, then decide and if yes then start without further delay. The earlier one starts, will reach his objectives earlier. The cake is big enough and everyone would get his share….


Ravi V. Patil, Director India, INDOLINK Consulting

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