Defence industry is technologically intensive and advanced industry. It requires huge expertise, innovation and competence. We might have heard of tech start-ups, fashion start-ups or food start-ups but a defence start-up company is something that sounds unusual to many. But many start-ups tapped into this market and excelled setting up a benchmark of inspiration for many other start-ups trying to foray into the defence domain.
The Need for Advanced Military Technologies
The need for advanced border patrolling and military equipment is rising and design and manufacturing of these machines have become a necessity. The Indian government has encouraged private companies to manufacture military equipment in India. This will give India a competitive advantage over other countries as it is becoming less dependent on other countries for the designing and manufacturing of the military equipment.
Indian defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman has stated that startups face administrative and technical hindrances and under the existing set of framework and regulations companies cannot take part in the tendering process unless they had been in relevant business for a specified number of years or have achieved a certain amount of turnover.
The government, she said, was taking up initiatives to remove such kind of rules which restricted the entry of startups in the tendering process.
The contribution of Startups in Technology Innovation
The Indian government’s decision to extend the FDI in the defence sector up to 100 percent has encouraged many investors. The country is finally moving towards ‘inhouse manufacturing’ and is gradually decreasing its military imports.
Netra, a UAV designed and manufactured by a Navi Mumbai based startup has equipped the border patrolling forces as a better surveillance equipment. The company was started by three IITians namely Ankit Mehta, Rahul Singh and Ashish Bhat. Tonbo Imaging, a Bangalore based startup provides digital imaging systems for military uses. It provides strategic electronics and immersive surveillance for military applications. A medical technology firm, Axio Biosolutions supplies emergency bleeding control solution to the Indian Army. Notably, Axio Biosolutions stopped exporting its products to cater to domestic demands. This company is founded by Leo Mavley and Ashish Pandya.
Aerospace and defence technology startup, Adayah Aerospace is engaged in manufacturing electro-optics systems, control actuation systems and electromagnetic actuators for Indian airforce and border patrolling forces. Interestingly, this start up is conscious about making consistent efforts to bring in innovation and excellence in the defence domain.
They have set up centre for excellence in design, engineering, integration and testing to develop technologically advanced aerospace and defence systems. A Bangalore based startup, Sankhyalabs has developed an electronic system which enables Indian navy and coast guard to monitor traffic in the sea to avoid any casualties.
The Roadmap Ahead
Indian private sector is looking forward to extending its product and service range for Indian military. The products made in India are inexpensive and most importantly makes us independent. The government is looking for new indigenous companies who can contribute to innovations in military technologies and safeguard our great nation.