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Hurun Global Unicorn Index 2024: Unveiling the State of Global Startup Ecosystem

In 2024, the global unicorn landscape witnessed significant developments and challenges, as outlined in the Hurun Global Unicorn Index. While the United States maintained its lead with 703 unicorns and China followed with 340, India ranked third with 67 unicorns. However, India experienced a notable decline in unicorn creation for the first time since 2017, attributed primarily to a lack of investment despite robust stock market performance.

India’s Declining Unicorn Creation: A Concerning Trend

India, once a burgeoning hub for startups, witnessed a notable decline in unicorn creation for the first time since 2017, according to the Hurun Global Unicorn Index 2024. Despite ranking third globally with 67 unicorns, India experienced a slowdown attributed mainly to a lack of investment, despite robust stock market performance.

Offshore Unicorn Creation: A Surprising Revelation

Contrary to the domestic slowdown, Indian founders showcased remarkable entrepreneurial prowess abroad. The report highlighted India’s role as a significant contributor to offshore unicorns, with 109 unicorns founded outside the country, surpassing the count within India.

Global Unicorn Landscape: Insights and Trends

The Hurun Global Unicorn Index cataloged 1,453 unicorns across 53 countries and 291 cities, reflecting the diverse and expansive nature of the startup ecosystem. While the US and China led in unicorn count, the index underscored the emergence of unicorns from diverse locations, including Australia and Malta.

Year of AI: Transformative Innovations and Valuation Surges

The year 2024 was hailed as “the year of AI,” marked by notable advancements and valuation surges in AI-driven startups. OpenAI’s valuation soared to $100 billion, symbolizing the growing influence of AI technologies globally, with notable contributions from startups in China and elsewhere.

Entrepreneurship Evolution: Global Expansion and Spinoffs

Entrepreneurship witnessed a golden era, with the number of unicorns tripling since 2019. While the US led in unicorn creation, China emerged as a significant player, driven by sectors like AI, semiconductors, and new energy. Moreover, spinoffs from larger companies, particularly in China, added to the diversity and innovation within the unicorn landscape.

Top 10 Unicorns: Key Players and Value Contribution

The top 10 unicorns represented a substantial portion of the world’s unicorn valuation, contributing $198 billion in value addition. Notable newcomers like OpenAI, Canva, and Binance reshaped the unicorn hierarchy, highlighting the evolving dynamics of the global startup ecosystem.

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