Bangalore, June 15, 2018: Global philanthropic investment firm Omidyar Network, in partnership with venture development firm Village Capital, hosted India’s first-ever civic technology event – the Civic Tech Connect 2018 – earlier this week. The event which focused on bringing together investors and entrepreneurs to build India’s civic tech ecosystem, saw more than 100 participants.
With 337 million Indians slated to use a smartphone in 2018 and an increasing number of technology-led initiatives by the government such as Digital India, BharatNet, and the Smart Cities program, the Indian civic tech ecosystem is poised for growth. Omidyar Network, which has invested more than $132M across 75 civic tech organizations around the globe to date, with more than $9M+ investments in India, is keen to further nurture and develop this budding ecosystem in the country through the Civic Tech India 2018 Accelerator program, in collaboration with Village Capital.
Said Roopa Kudva, Partner and Managing Director at Omidyar Network India Advisors, commented, “India needs more entrepreneurs driving the growth of the civic tech industry. With important technology enablers in place, the sector has the potential to develop rapidly. As the ‘next half billion’ Indians come online for the first time through their mobile phones over the next five years, there is a huge opportunity for investors and entrepreneurs to create innovative civic tech solutions to enable central, state, and local governments to be more responsive and efficient in the delivery of critical services, while empowering citizens to engage more effectively with governments.”
The event also saw discussions with experts such as Viraj Tyagi, CEO, eGovernments Foundation; political economist and former IAS officer, Santhosh Mathew, and Kartik Desai, Executive Director, Asha Impact.