Startups in India raised about $24.1 billion (approximately Rs 1.79 lakh crore) in 2021, three times more than the previous year, nonprofit advocacy group National Association of Software and Service Companies, or Nasscom, and global management firm Zinnov said on Friday.

The two organisations released the findings as part of their “Indian Tech Start-Up Ecosystem: Year of the Titans” report.

The amount raised by startups in 2021 constituted a two-fold increase as compared to pre-coronavirus levels, PTI repoted citing the study.

Over 2,250 startups were established in 2021, taking the total base to 25,000-26,000, the study found.

The report stated that the United States remained the biggest source of foreign direct investment in startups, but added that involvement of other countries is also growing, The Hindu reported. About 50% of deals involving startups had at least one investor domiciled in India.

The study also said that India added 42 new unicorns in 2021, up by more than 3.5 times from the previous year. A unicorn refers to a startup that reaches a valuation of $1 billion.

The number of new unicorns added was the third-highest in the world after the United States and China.

About 35% of investments in startups went to retail and retail technology, education technology, food technology, supply chain management and logistics.

“The performance of the Indian startup ecosystem in 2021 has proved the resilience and dedication being put by multiple startups across segments,” Debjani Ghosh, the president of Nasscom said, according to The Hindu. “With record-breaking funding, an increase in the number of unicorns, jobs being created in the near term, the Indian startup ecosystem’s future looks even brighter going ahead in 2022.”

Pari Natarajan, the CEO of Zinnov told the newspaper that 2021 has been an outstanding year for Indian startups in comparison to the United States, United Kingdom, Israel and China. Natarajan said that India had the highest rate of growth with respect to deals, in both seed-stage and late-stage funding.