According to a startup exchange pact, which is likely to besigned between Govt of India's Startup India and German Startup Association, Indian startups may soon get easier access to the German market.

Commerce and industry minister Nirmala Sitharaman, during her recent visit to Germany alongside PM Modi, discussed with the country’s economic affairs minister Brigitte Zypries opportunities for collaboration to share knowledge and best practices in the startup ecosystem.

A formal agreement between the two countries is being worked upon and is likely to be signed soon, said a report by Economics Times. The agreement will be signed between Startup India and the German Startups Association, which has about 650 startups and 50 partners, including corporate entities and venture capital firms, and coordinates with the United States, China, India and Israel.

Meanwhile, three German startups working in renewable energy sector have sought support from Sitharam for entering India and working with the government’s Startup India initiative to explore business opportunities in the country.

India is exploring other such international tie-ups to promote domestic startups and provide them with a global platform, officials said.

Notably, German companies and VC firms already have pretty strong presence in India, as for unawares, VC firm Rocket Internet run by the Samwer brothers had entered the Indian market with Jabong, FabFurnish and Foodpanda but is failing now. Since the start of 2016, Rocket has sold Jabong and FabFurnish, two of its largest investments in the country, in a fire sale; its other holdings, Foodpanda, a food-tech company, and Printvenue, a personalized printing business, are struggling to survive.

Another German company and software giant SAP has a deep relationship with India. It engages with over 400 startups across the country through SAP Labs. SAP’s in-house investment arm, Sapphire Ventures (formerly SAP Ventures), had invested in companies like PayTM's parent company One97, iYogi and Newgen technologies.

Besides these, GIZ (German Development Agency for Technical Cooperation), DfID (UK’s Department for International Development) and Intellecap have partnered to set up StartupWave, India’s first virtual incubation platform. The platform and services, which include online resources as well as links to in-person support and mentoring, were co- created with physical incubators, investors and other players in 2014. More than 600 entrepreneurs from across India and across sectors have used this platform.

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