Doing Business in Bengaluru: India’s IT, Startups Hub

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By Aparna GuddadMitKat Advisory Services

Bengaluru (formerly, Bangalore) is the capital of the south Indian state of Karnataka, which is known for its technology industry, expansive gardens, and globalized character.

Nicknamed the ‘Silicon Valley of India,’ Bengaluru is one of India’s biggest software exporters, is a dynamic startup hub, and the country’s first information technology (IT) outsourcing destination.

Running parallel to the city’s IT sector is a thriving textiles industry.

Key information

  • Population: According to the last census of 2011, Bengaluru’s population was 8.5 million; it is now estimated to be around 10.1 million.
  • Residential areas: Prominent residential areas near the IT hub include Whitefield, Electronics City as well as localities in the south eastern belt of the Outer Ring Road, such as JP Nagar, Sarjapur Road, and Bellandur. A few IT industry giants have their base in north Bengaluru on the Outer Ring Road. Key residential areas here include Hebbal and Nagawara. Other popular residential areas are Koramangala, Indiranagar, Jayanagar, Sadashivnagar, and Dollar’s Colony. It is advised to live near one’s place of work in Bengaluru to save on commute time, which is high in the city.
  • Temperature: The city experiences good weather year round. Temperatures reach an average high of 34°C during the summer in April, dropping down to 15°C in January. The city gets heavy rainfall during the monsoon season in the months from June to September.

Ease of doing business in Bengaluru

According to India’s Business Reform Action Plan, 2017 – a joint initiative between the World Bank and the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) – the state of Karnataka is the 6th best Indian state in terms of ease of doing business, up from ranking 13th in 2016. 

Karnataka has established a single window system for project approvals and has digitized the registration process with most ministries. Information pertaining to land availability in commercial areas in Karnataka is now available online, as are building approval applications and pollution certificates.

Factory licenses now require renewal every ten years; previously, it was after a three-year period. Startups can now register online; previously, the registration process was cumbersome and involved 17 different Acts of law.

Bengaluru’s IT clusters and growing startup ecosystem has translated into a well-established and large skilled labor pool.   

However, the Karnataka government continues to suffer from massive delays in approving building and construction. Furthermore, internal government corruption has led to unreliable public services including water, electricity, and waste management.

Transport system

  • The Kempegowda International Airport is located about 40 km from the city center. Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) buses and all taxi services (Mega Cabs, Meru Cabs, and KSTDC taxis are available from all parts of the city.
  • Namma Metro (subway) services do not have penetration in key localities as yet.
  • Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) bus services are widespread, though their use is not recommended for foreigners.
  • Other local means of transportation are auto-rickshaws. Traveling in Bengaluru is also convenient through the use of cab aggregator services (Uber, Ola, and Meru), which may be more suitable for travel over shorter distances.

Important contact information

  • Police helpline: 100/ +91 80 2294 2595
  • Ambulance: 108/1062
  • Fire: 101
  • Women helpline: 1091/ +91 80 2294 3225
  • Foreigner Regional Registration Office (FRRO): +91 80 2221 8195 (located at the BMTC Bus stand building, KH Road, Shantinagar)

Chambers of Commerce and Industry in BangaloreConsulates in Bangalore

Calendar 2018 – Religious festivals

Religious festivals in Bengaluru are commonly celebrated in public, disrupting traffic, and culminating in large public gatherings.

  • January 14: Makar Sankranti / Pongal
  • March 2: Holi
  • March 30: Good Friday
  • March / April: Karaga Festival
  • March 29: Mahavir Jayanti
  • April 18: Basava Jayanti
  • June 16: Ramazan / Eid ul-Fitr
  • August 22: Eid ul-Zuha / Bakr Eid
  • September 8: St. Mary’s Feast
  • September 13: Ganesh Chaturthi
  • September 21: Muharram
  • October 08: Mahalaya
  • October 19: Dussehra
  • November 06: Diwali (South India) / Narak Chaturdasi
  • November 07: Diwali
  • November 08: Balipadyami
  • November 21: Milad un-Nabi / Eid e-Milad
  • November 26: Kanakadasa Jayanti
  • December 25: Christmas

Public holidays in Bengaluru

The Indian government classifies public holidays into three categories: gazetted, restricted, and State or Union territories. Gazetted holidays are mandatory national holidays, restricted holidays are optional and vary across regions, and holidays under the state and union territories category apply only to their locality.

Mandatory public holidays in the state of Karnataka, including in Bengaluru are:

  • January 26: Republic Day
  • May 1: May Day
  • August 15: Independence Day
  • October 2: Gandhi Jayanti
  • November 1: Kannada Rajyothsava

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