With the Supreme Court quashing a petition seeking postponement of the Budget, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley would be presenting the Union Budget 2017 on February 1. This time, the budget breaks away from the years-old tradition of taking place at the end of February.
This year is also an important budget for the start-up ecosystem, where entrepreneurs will be looking for statements from the finance minister to advance Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s start-up India movement and a incentives for a push to digital payments.
Start-ups are also looking for tax holidays and clarity on FDI rules for marketplaces. Here’s a list of five start-ups detailing what they are looking for from the Budget.
1) Qtrove.com – Online marketplace for sustainable curated products
Vinamra Pandiya, CEO and Founder, said, “We look forward to getting some more clarity for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in B2C e-commerce through the automatic route. We also hope for a provision of enabling marketplaces to give a discount from their side.
“We also want the government to relax the rule which bars e-commerce companies from getting more than 25% business from a single vendor. The start-up world is awaiting the implementation of GST at the earliest to enable cross-state logistics with minimum constraints and friction.”
2) Giftease.com: Online gifting portal
Vivek Mathur, CEO, said, “This fiscal has seen some landmark reforms which should help boost tax collection. Hence, there are strong expectations of a significant cut in income taxes, for both corporates and individuals. Overall, consumption has been severely impacted in the last couple of months, and firm steps to boost consumption and improve consumer sentiment, are crucial for the retail and e-commerce sectors.”
3) The Man Company: Men’s grooming brand
Rohit Chawla, CEO and Co-Founder, said, We expect the government to take steps that will boost consumption and sales. How the government goes about digitisation of the economy will also be keenly watched. We hope that there are provisions that encourage digital payments over cash transactions. We are also expecting a smooth execution of GST.
4) LiveHealth: Platform to keep your healthcare records live
Abhimanyu Bhosale, Co-Founder, CEO, said, “In the aftermath of demonetization, we are anticipating effective execution of the roadmaps laid by the Modi movement. Clear and measurable timelines is what is most important. Supportive financial systems and an uncomplicated process in getting clearances along with the provision of tax are some of the key expectations for the start-up ecosystem to thrive and boom in the country.
“The interesting thing to look forward for this budget would be how the government promotes and incentivises electronic payments to minimise economic slowdown as much as possible. We are hopeful that the government promotes authentication of e-based payments, where the entire process from sign up, authentication and transfer is smooth, simple and secure. We are hopeful that the Budget 2017 will be positive for the entire start-up ecosystem.”
5) SpiderG: India’s first e-invoicing technology provider for SMEs
Ashwani Rathore, CEO and Co-Founder, said, “As a start-up, we face various tax and regulatory issues and I am hoping that this Budget will address some of these issues. This financial year was tough for the Indian start-up ecosystem and to make the situation better, Employee Stock Ownership (ESOP) plans for the start-ups should be taxed at the time of sale which would help in paying their taxes as they would have greater liquidity and the instruments could also get a fair valuation.
“The government should announce a series of initiatives to support the startups, including widening of the tax-free regime to five years from three years and faster procedural clearances. Such announcements will boost our Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Start-up India movement. I am also expecting some announcements at the backdrop of demonetization to promote the digital economy where online payment transaction charges would be reduced.”