The growth of the Indian consumer market has caught everyone's attention. Seeing the exhilarating growth in sales and interest, the companies in the US which initially had no plans for India are now warming up to the country with products/services customised especially for the Indian consumers and market. Case in point, Palo Alto, California-based online home renovation and design giant Houzz. The site, which attracts a whopping 40 million visitors each month, recently launched a custom site for the Indian market in January this year. The move came after the company realised that about a million customers and more than 50,000 service providers in India had signed up to use their site.

The Indian subcontinent, which boosts of having the second largest population on the planet, has a fast-growing economy for such a large country, reaching 7.1 percent GDP growth last year. Although a majority of the people in the country still remain poor, but the last few years have seen the emergence of a large middle class with disposable incomes. According to experts, the size of this new Indian middle class can be estimated to be as high as 300 million.

A study by the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) suggests that if India continues to grow at the current pace, average household incomes will triple over the next two decades, making the country the world’s fifth-largest consumer economy by 2025, up from the current 12th position.

Houzz is one of the several companies on this year's Disruptor list which have focused their attention on India, reflecting the growing importance of the South Asian country in the world consumer market.

Prior to Houzz, several big US startups like Amazon and Uber have already infiltrated the Indian market and are trying to make their mark . Currently, the world-renowned ecommerce giant is locked in a fierce battle with its Indian counterparts like Flipkart and Snapdeal. On the other hand, Uber is chasing after India's homegrown ride-hailing giant Ola.

India is a preferred choice over China for the US companies as its market is much open than the latter. Last year, China's local car-hailing giant Didi Chuxing drove US-based taxi-hailing giant Uber out of its home country. Didi had successfully managed to win a multibillion-dollar and a year-and-a-half-long battle with Uber last year where the giant agreed to sell its business and leave the country.

However, the path is not all that smooth. According to experts, venture capitalists who are expecting a quick return on their investments in India will be left disappointed as the market still needs five to seven years to realise its full potential.

In addition to this, the companies coming to the Indian market need to do their homework in order to understand the market and its consumers better. According to experts, companies coming in from abroad will have to agree to adjust to the market in order to become a huge success. Indian states are known to have various degrees of bureaucracy, and wildly different regulations, languages and cultures. Further, the country's internet speed isn't at par with the rest of the world, so web applications need to be optimised for slower internet speeds.

According to global experts, even though India is growing and maturing, it is still in its teenage years. But, that being said, a huge population and a large middle class with disposable incomes makes it a market to watch out for. India’s robust economic growth and rising household incomes are expected to increase consumer spending to US$ 3.6 trillion by 2020, according to a report.

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