List of 20 Successful Young Entrepreneurs in India

Table of Contents

With the growth of the startups in India comes the growing list of successful an famous young entrepreneurs who lead these successful startups from strength to strength.

And that is what we discuss in the blog : The journey of the Young, Successful Entrepreneurs in India.

Now before i jump to the list, let me give you a bit of a background on what makes India, the darling of VCs from across the world.

To start with – India of today is making unprecedented strides in producing a world-class startup ecosystem.

This development, in turn, has provided a plethora of opportunities to one of the youngest nations in the world. which has led to a series of Startups (Unicorns) coming from India.

Consider this: India has the highest youth population in the world. (Source: The Hindu)

Around 65% of the population of India is below the age of 35.

That means that India has around 808 million youngsters living in the country.

In other words, India has more youth than the total population of many countries! (Sources: WikipediaBScholarly)

More than 100 unicorns (valuation of US$1 billion) have emerged from the country in the last decade.

In the current year (2022), 42 tech startups have joined the coveted unicorns club in India. (Source: The Hindu)

Such explosive growth in the startup ecosystem means there must be as many young entrepreneurs leading the innovation drive.

Between, you can check lists of young entrepreneurs from various countries in our series on young entrepreneurs.

a. List of Young & famous Australian Entrepreneurs 

b. List of Young & famous Canadian entrepreneurs.

Now, without further ado, let me present you with the list of India Successful Young Entrepreneurs

The successful indian young entrepreneurs’ list provides information in a structured format for entrepreneurs, the company founded by them, their estimated worth, their journey to success, and a famous quote from them.

Riju Ravichandran

Byju Raveendran - India successful entrepreneurs - lessonsatstartup

Once [ pupils ] start experiencing the advantages of learning online, we expect a lot of them to continue learning that way.”

Your startup is the center of attention when a company like Facebook decides to invest in your Business.

And this is what happened to Byju.

Byju became a prominent name in the Indian startup scene with investment coming from Facebook and other V.C. powerhouses like Tencent and Naspers Ventures. (source: Byju)

The man behind Byju’s success is Riju Ravichandran. He is the first name on our list because of his recently found success and the buzz Byju has managed to create in such a short time frame in India and he is the first name on our successful entrepreneur’s list.

Founder of the company: the co-founder of Byju’s, Think & Learn

(Source: Forbes | The week)

Earlier days

Raveendran, an engineer by profession, always had a passion for teaching students.

He started his career by teaching maths to students.

Raveendran always had strong exposure to teaching as both of his parents, worked as educators.

Raveendran enjoyed teaching so much that he gave up on his engineering job. He started with free workshops and only charged money when students were comfortable with his teaching style and subscribed to his advanced module workshops.

His teaching methods were always famous and had a lasting impact on students. In addition to teaching maths, he helped students clear entrance exams for IIM.

It was the group of 8 of his students who helped him set up the Byju app – an app that has changed the landscape of the EdTech industry in India.

Source: Starsunfolded

The road to fame

Byju offers highly adaptive, engaging, and effective learning programs for students in classes 1 -12 (K-12) and competitive exams like JEE, NEET, and IAS.

Founded in 2009, Byju currently operates with 15,000 employees at its headquarters in Bengaluru, India.

Raveendran started in 2006-07 by teaching his friends. His first-class included  35 students in one class. By the 6th class, the number went up to as high as 1,200 students.

Making it bigger and better was his motto from day one of starting his teaching journey.

In three years, Raveendran expanded to nine different cities teaching CAT (Common Aptitude Test) aspirants first and then school students.

The largest session conducted included 24,000 students simultaneously at an indoor stadium. (Source: Forbes India)

Byju’s obtained investment funds of $18 million during Series A which was followed by a significant Series C contribution of $75 million by Sofina, Sequoia Capital, and Aarin Capital.

In Sept 2016 Lightspeed Venture Partners, Times Internet, and Chan Zuckerberg Initiative joined in and brought $50 million to the table.

The money didn’t stop there and investors continued to trust their funding as far as Sept 2020, the year of the pandemic – getting an accumulative investment of $1.93 billion.

Today, Byju’s focuses on helping students excel in their exam results.

Their excellent work is reflected in their paid user renewal rate, which amounts to 85% of their user base each academic year.

Source: Startup Map

Did you know?

Byju’s collaboration with Disney in 2019 marked another success for the company.

Targeting students 6-8 years old offering interactive learning app for subjects Math and Science.

Interestingly, the new app will offer personalized learning programs featuring Disney’s timeless stories and characters from Disney Princess, Frozen, Cars, and Toy Story franchises.

Source: Business Standard

Sachin Bansal

Sachin Bansal - India successful entrepreneurs - lessonsatstartup

“The core of any business is to earn money. You have not done your job well until you find a stranger who is willing to open his/her wallet to give you money for the services/products that you are offering. The next step after that is to focus on scaling it up well.”
Source: Your Story


Founder of the company:
 Flipkart

Net worth: US$1.2 Billion

Company’s worth: US$ 20 Billion

(Source: Forbes | The Week)

Earlier days

Sachin Bansal requires no introduction. He was the co-founder of Flipkart – a startup that brought India on the world’s startup map.

Sachin Bansal and his entrepreneurial story have inspired a whole generation of techies to start their entrepreneurial journey.

Sachin Bansal is an alumnus of IIT, Delhi from where he graduated in C.S in 2005. Sachin started his corporate career by joining Techspan – a company he left within a few months to join Amazon in 2006.

In 2007, Sachin quit his job at Amazon to start his venture.

Source: People Pill

The road to fame

Sachin conceptualized the idea to start Flipkart during his time at Amazon. Sachin wanted to establish an e-commerce company like Amazon that sells made-in-India products and is more focused on the Indian market.

Flipchart was the earlier version of Flipkart.

Later, in October 2007 along with his partner Binny Bansal, they started Flipkart – a company that will change the face of the eCommerce industry in India.

The earlier version of Flipkart only sold books in the Bangalore region, but the company grew steadily, and soon, they were selling everything under the sun in the eCommerce space.

Accel Partners started the funding story of Flipkart. The company came into the picture by investing US$1 Million in Flipkart. This funding round was followed by another funding of US$10 Million from U.S. Tiger Global company.

In 2014, Flipkart acquired Myntra.com, another web shopping company for Rs₹2000 crore.

Since then, Flipkart acquired a series of companies, including famous Indian startups – PhonePe and Letsbuy.

The founder duo of Sachin and Binny Bansal were nominated for the best entrepreneur award by Ernst and Young award.

Source: Get In Startup

In 2018, Wallmart acquired a 77% stake in for a whopping US$16 Billion which bought a windfall for Sachin Bansal who at the time had a 5.5% stake in Flipkart. It is estimated that Sachin Bansal made Rs₹6700 Crore out of this deal.

(Source: Yourstory | IndiaToday)

However, all was not rosy after the deal went through.

Sachin was asked to step down from the role. He later quit the company he started around 14 years with his college friend Binny Bansal.

Did you know?

Did you know Sachin Bansal is a gaming freak!

After Flipkart’s acquisition by Walmart, Sachin has taken a step back and is enjoying his time playing games.

During his college days, his favorite games were Age of Empires (a series of historical real-time strategy games) and Quake III Arena (multiplayer-focused first-person shooter game).

Source: Economic Times

Binny Bansal

Binny Bansal - India successful entrepreneurs - lessonsatstartup

“Customer experience is the top metric at our level. Everybody is measured on that.”

Source: Entrackr

Founder of the company: Co-founder of Flipkart

Net worth: US$1.2 Billion

Company’s worth: US$ 20 Billion

(Source: Forbes)

Earlier days

Binny Bansal like Sachin Bansal is an alumnus of IIT, Delhi. After graduation, he started his career with Sarnoff Corp, a research and development company. After Sarnoff, Binny worked with Amazon where he and Sachin decided to start Flipkart.

Source: Wikipedia

The road to fame

Sachin and Binny’s Bansal’s success stories are connected to Flipkart’s rise to the top of the Indian startup scene.

In Flipkart’s earlier days, they both started by delivering books to customers. Binny shares a story of personally delivering books to Kalyan Krishnamurthy, the current CEO of Flipkart.

The story of Flipkart’s journey from a two-story building in Koramangala, Bangalore to a company that was acquired by U.S. retailer Walmart is a part of the folklore.

While Sachin’s roles were thinking about website design, SEO and marketing, Binny Bansal looked after the supply chain, the technology, and the backend systems.

COD or cash on delivery was the game-changer during the pike of success for Flipkart. Binny believed that customers wanted to get the product first and then pay.

Another critical addition to the company’s growth plans was Ekart, Flipkart’s logistics unit.

Ekart – started with a team size of 20 in Bangalore in 2010 and could deliver a 50% repeat rate within a few months of starting.

Soon, the company was serving 20 cities across India with 1,000 delivery executives in the next year. (Source: Inc42)

However, what is also interesting about the story is the part where Binny and Sachin Bansal parted ways with Flipkart, after the acquisition of Flipkart by Walmart.

After the acquisition, Binny continued as the group CEO and chairman at the Flipkart group; Binny parted ways with Flipkart in 2018 due to allegations of personal misconduct. (Source: Economic Times)

At the time of the acquisition, Bansal’s stake in Flipkart (3.52%) was valued at US$159 million. (source: Business Standard)

Did you know?

Binny was rejected twice by Google.

Both Binny and Sachin were involved in the delivery job for Flipkart to understand the customer better.

The customers they visited recognized them and took pictures and got autographs from the celebrated duo.

Source: Time of India

Nithin Kamath

Nithin Kamath - India successful entrepreneurs - lessonsatstartup

“Do not chase money; let it float towards you.”

Source: Trade Brains

Founder of the company: Zerodha

Net worth: USD 1.55 Billion (combined wealth of both Nithin and Nikhil Kamath)

Company’s value: USD 3 Billion

(Source: Business Insider | Yourstory)

Earlier days

At the age of 17, Nithin Kamath started his entrepreneurial journey by managing his father’s trading account.

In between, Nithin worked in a call center for three years and then worked as a sub-broker for Reliance Money before starting Zerodha with his younger sibling Nikhil Kamath in 2010.

He is an avid poker and basketball player, and a martial arts enthusiast.

Source: People Pill

The road to fame

Nithin’ ‘s journey to leading one of the most famous startups in recent years wasn’t easy.

Nithin made and then lost money during the boom and crash periods in the stock exchange (2001-2002 | 2009-2010) in India. Nithin was also quite successful in earning a substantial amount of commission as a sub-broker for reliance.

After spending close to 10 years in the stock trading world, Nithin decided to turn into a full-time broker.

The idea was to use technology to build a platform that targeted young tech-savvy investors who are turned off by the high stock brokerage fees charged by the existing brokers in the industry.

In 2010, Zerodha (Zero + Rodha which means obstruction in Sanskrit) was started with a team size of 5 employees.

Today, the platform is the biggest trading platform in India and has close to 22 lakh trading accounts with more than 5 million trades taking place on the platform daily.

The experience he earned during years of telesales helped Nithin bootstrap Zerodha.

All efforts paid off when he was named as one of the “Top 10 Businessmen to Watch Out for in India” by The Economic Times(2016).

This award was followed by a series of awards like – the E & Y Entrepreneur of the year award in 2017, Economic Times (E.T.) “Startup of the Year 2020”, and NSE Retail broker of the year 2019 and 2018.

After the market crashed in March 2020, new investors started to pick up stock trading and buy large-cap blue-chip equity. Also, the median age of investor changed to 30+ and this contributed to a positive eco-system (Source: Trade Brains | Live Mint).

Did you know?

Rainmatter, a fintech fund and incubator initiated by Zerodha (mainly as an angel investor) incubates eight startups in various industries.

The Bangalore-based incubator provides well-equipped workspaces, mentorship, and funding (US$100K – US$1M) in place of a minority stake.

Rainmatter also offers direct industry connections and mentorship to elevate their client product to the rest of the world

Rainmatter Climate, another fintech fund by Zerodha, focuses on funding grassroots social organizations, individuals, and startups working on climate change. This extension fund channel of Rainmatter currently funding two organizations; Terra.do and Blu Sky.

An interesting fact about Zerodha is that he is the only successful entrepreneur on our list in India who has bootstrapped his company to the unicorn club.

Ritesh Agarwal

Ritesh Agarwal - India successful entrepreneurs - lessonsatstartup

“It is extremely important to build something that 100 people absolutely love using rather than make something that a 1,000 people would just, kind of, like.”

Source: Hotel Management

Founder of the company: OYO

Net worth: US$1.1 billion

Company’s value: US$8 billion

(Source: Economic Times | Business Insider)

Ritesh Agarwal, a resident of Odisha state in India, graduated from St. Johns Senior Secondary School. In 2011 after graduation, Ritesh moved to Delhi for college.

In 2013, Ritesh dropped out of college after getting selected for the Thiel Fellowship. He dropped out of college and was selected for the Thiel Fellowship in 2013.

Thiel Fellowship was initiated by Peter Thiel, the early Facebook investor and PayPal co-founder. (Source: Wikipedia)

Recently at the age of 24, Ritesh became the world’s second-youngest billionaire next to the 21 years old cosmetic entrepreneur; Kylie Jenner. (Source: Live Mint)

Earlier days

Agarwal comes from Bissam, small-town south of Odisha, a region known to teem with Naxalite activity. In his earlier years, he used to sell SIM cards in his hometown.

In 2011, Agarwal, moved to Delhi to pursue his entrepreneurial journey which came after he decided to not sit for engineering entrance exams.

VentureNursey, a fund based out of Mumbai provided Ritesh with seed funding of around Rs₹30 lakh.

During the preceding years of running Oravel, Agarwal stayed in over 100 bed-and-breakfast rooms.

He was motivated to start OYO Rooms so that he could be in control of the T.V. remote – something Ritesh could not do as a child when he stayed with his relatives.

The idea to build OYO, which means On Your Own sparked since he always wanted to take control of the T.V. channel whereby his relatives love watching soap operas and he prefers Cartoon Network. (Source: Economic Times)

The road to fame

Ritesh started Oravel (now OYO rooms) – budget accommodation in 2011.

After being selected for Theil’s scholarship, Ritesh got back to his idea with a seed funding of US$100,000 in his pocket (Source: Times of India).

By 2014, Oyo rooms have closed its first round of Series A funding which was followed next year by a US$25 Million grant from Lightspeed India, Sequoia, and others.

The most significant funding break came for OYO in the form of a US$100 Million Series funding by the Japanese fund – Softbank.

All these quick rounds of funding helped OYO accelerate its growth. By the end of 2015, Oyo had established a presence to many major cities in India, including Bengaluru, Mumbai, and Gurgaon.

By the end of 2017, OYO had expanded to Malaysia and Nepal, which was followed by further expansion in Dubai, China, UAE, and Indonesia in 2018.

In the year 2019, OYO finally entered the unicorn club by raising US$800 million more from Softbank and another US$200 million from its existing investors (Source: Entrepreneur).

The year also was a landmark year for Oyo as it managed to register a revenue of almost US$950 Million, which was 4.5 times increase on its yearly income.

Oyo plans to overtake Marriott, the current world’s largest hotel brand with about 1.4 million rooms by 2023.

Did you know?

What has helped Agarwal the most in his entrepreneurial journey is his hands-on approach.

And later, as OYO Rooms chief, checking into a new room every night was also Business. He believed that by staying at each of the hotels, he could better understand both customer and hotel owner expectations.

Agarwal was the only dropout heading a team of 10-20 people from IIMs, more than 200 people from IITs, HBS, and Ivy leagues.

Source: Economic Times

Deepinder Goyal

Deepinder Goyal - India successful entrepreneurs - lessonsatstartup

“While I was working at Bain and Company, I noticed people queuing up in the pantry every day trying to look for menus to order food and that’s when the idea struck me – what if we could access these menus online.”

Source: Startup Stories

Founder of the company: Zomato

Net worth: US$ 50 to 70 million

Company’s worth: US$3.4 Billion
(Source: Pymnts)

Earlier days

Deepinder Goyal is an alumnus of IIT Delhi (god…I got to check their food canteen. I do not know what they mix in their food. Bansals, Goyals – all these tech geniuses are from IIT Delhi 😉)

After graduation, Deepinder started his career with Bain and Company as a Senior Associate Consultant.

For the next four years, Deepinder worked as a consultant and worked in parallel for his company Zomato.com (earlier: foodiesbay.com).

The road to fame

Goyal started his entrepreneurial journey by building a website foodlet.in which was later changed to foodiebay.com with help from his wife and her sister.

All three of them worked on the venture, along with their full-time jobs. Deepinder also drove around the city collecting restaurants to add to the website. (Source: Karostartup )

On 10 July 2008, Deepinder Goyal partnered with Pankaj Chaddah and continued to build foodiebay.com, later changing the name to Zomato.com with an initial list of 1000+ restaurants in Delhi NCR.

By 2012, Zomato had around 2.5 million website visitors. By 2014, the number increased dramatically to 62.5 million.

As per Wikipedia, Zomato raised close to US$16.7 Million from Info edge India (the company behind Naukri.com) in this time duration.

In the next few years, Zomato had a series of funding rounds, the most substantial of which was the US$210 million funding raised by Ant Financials – Alibaba’s payment affiliate in 2018 at an evaluation of US$2 Billion.

Zomato diluted 10% of its stake for this funding.

Since 2014, Zomato as an organization has also been on a shopping spree buying startups that will contribute to Zomatos’ success in the global market.

Some of the startups acquired are Menu Mania, Lunchtime.cz, Urbanspoon, and most recently, Ubereat’s delivery business in India.

Today, Zomato is one of the biggest names in the restaurant directory space and is a prominent name in the food tech space rivaled only by Yelp.com (a famous food portal in the USA).

(Source: Yo Success | Wikipedia)

Did you know?

Today, Zomato is currently available in 24 countries in 10 languages.

Zomato provides an option for foodies to follow their friends so that they can know what their friends eat and what they like.

Users can also check out a new restaurant when selecting the preference to discover a restaurant listed near their current location.

Bhavish Agarwal

Bhavish Agarwal - India successful entrepreneurs - lessonsatstartup

“I don’t have a car and have decided never to own one. All things can be done by every company in the world. Apple builds a phone, and so does Samsung. It’s not about being different but about being better at what you do.”

Source: The Famous People

Founder of the company: Ola Cabs

Net worth: INR 31 Billion

Company’s value: US$10 Billion

Source: Wikipedia | BusinessInsider

Earlier days

Bhavish Aggarwal joined Microsoft as a research intern during their college days and later (after graduation), he worked with Microsoft as an assistant researcher.

In his two-year tenure with Microsoft, Bhavesh also ran a blog called desitech.in (Source: The Famous People).

The story behind the inception of Ola Cabs is an interesting one. As told by Bhavish, ‘Ola cabs was started because of an incident which involved him renting a car for a weekend trip from Bangalore to Bandipur’.

The car’s driver stopped the vehicle in Mysore and demanded more money which led to the group taking a bus to finish the trip.

The incident prompted Bhavesh to think of a car rental company that is web-based and offers more transparency and economical prices for its customers.

Source: Wikipedia

The road to fame

Bhavish and Ankit Bhati, a friend from IIT days started Ola cabs (earlier olatrips.com) in December 2010.

The first city they selected to cater to their services was Mumbai. Using Ola cabs, you could book outstation cabs from Mumbai.

Without initial seed capital, the going was never easy for the young entrepreneurs and they had to rely on the phone to offer on-demand rides to customers.

Things changed for the duo after they received seed funding of US$5 million from Tiger Global Management which was followed by more funding from Rehan Yar Khar, Anupam Mittal, and Snapdeal’s Kunal Bahl even though he had no prior business experience.

By 2014, Ola had received funding from two of the biggest V.C. firms in the world – Softbank and Sequoia Capital, which helped it capture the majority of the Indian market in its segment.

It is estimated that Ola had a 60% market share with around 15 lakh bookings/day.

The funding helped the company grow drastically and capture the lion’s share of Indian Market.

In January 2018, Ola entered the Australian market which was followed by its expansion in Newzealand in September 2018 and the U.K. in March 2019 (Source: The Famous People)

Ola’s market push in the U.K. was further helped by Uber’s license being stripped by the local authorities after it was discovered that around 14000 registered drivers with Uber had fake Ids.

The rapid expansion has led both co-founders to restructure their roles for Ola.

Bhavish and Ankit had split the company’s responsibilities. While Bhavish is responsible for overseeing Ola’s international expansion, Ankit is leading the company’s growth in the domestic market (Source: Entrepreneur)

Did you know?

Ankit and Bhavish are two of the youngest billionaires in India. They both turned into billionaires at the age of 25 and 26.

Sriharsha Majety

Sriharsha Majety - India successful entrepreneurs - lessonsatstartup

‘Growth is about learning and evolving with the different variables and moving parts.’
Source: 2 Flexiple

Founder of the company: Swiggy

Net worth: Rs1,400 crore

Company’s worth: US$3.6 billion.

Source: Wikipedia | Economic Times

Earlier days

Sriharsha Majety is from a family of entrepreneurs. His father runs a restaurant in Vijayawada, and his mother is a doctor by profession and has her clinic.

Sriharsha Majety graduated from BITS-Pilani and then completed his post-graduation from IIM-Calcutta. He worked for a short time duration as an investment banker in London before starting his first venture Bundl – a logistics aggregator with his partner Nandan Reddy – An online platform that helped SMBs connect to courier companies.

Sriharsha Majesty’s love for traveling took him on backpacking trips across the world. An experience he says helped him start his entrepreneurial journey.

Source: Your Story

The road to fame

In 2014, Swiggy – India’s first online food ordering system was launched from the I.T. hub of India, Bangalore.

The company soon established a good reputation for itself by offering record delivery times, a visual menu, and a platform that was highly recommended by users.

With over 12,000 restaurants on their roster, the industry’s best average delivery time of 37 minutes, and reduced overhead costs, Swiggy has positioned itself at the top of this field.

By 2015, Swiggy started attracting investments.

The first was a US$2 Million investment from Accel and SAIF Partners, along with additional investment from Norwest Venture Partners.

In the next year, Swiggy raised US$15 Million from new investors Bessemer Venture Partners and Harmony Partners, and existing V.C.s.

The major investment in Swiggy came in the form of an $80 million funding round from Naspers in 2017. This investment was followed by US$100 million in funding in 2018 from China-based Meituan-Dianping.

All the investments helped Swiggy enter the coveted unicorn startup club.

In early 2020, Swiggy received around US$43 million in funding which valued the company at US$3.6 billion.

Swiggy, like other unicorn startups, has had its share of acquisitions over the years.

– In 2017, Swiggy acquired Bangalore-based Asian food startup 48East.
– Swiggy also acquired Scootsy Logistics, a food, and fashion delivery service.
– Swiggy also went on to acquire a milk delivery startup in Mumbai called SuprDaily in an all-cash deal.
– In 2019, Swiggy also invested Rs 31 crore in Mumbai-based ready-to-eat food brand Fingerlix.

Recently, the company received approx. US$43 million funding at an evaluation of US$3.6 billion.
In August 2020, the company launched its groceries delivery platform called InstaMart.

(Source: Wikipedia | Your Story)

Did you know?

Sriharsha started his entrepreneurial venture by having the idea of enhancing logistic service.

Swiggy was not the first entrepreneurial adventure of the two founders. Their first venture was started In 2013 and was called Bundl.

Bundl was started to facilitate courier service and shipping within India. Bundl was halted and was rebranded to enter the food delivery market.

Source: Wikipedia

Vijay Shekhar Sharma

Vijay Shekhar Sharma - India successful entrepreneurs - lessonsatstartup

‘There are two kinds of companies in the world: One, who build, and two, who buy.’

Source: Magzter

Founder of the company: Paytm

Net worth: US$2.3 billion

Company’s value: US$10 billion

(Source: Wikipedia | Forbes)

Earlier days

The last name on our list of successful young entrepreneurs, Vijay Shankar Sharma, is the most famous entrepreneur in the list. He is the man behind one of the most successful ventures in India – Paytm.

Since his days in school and college, Vijay Shekhar Sharma was a prodigy.

He finished college at the age of 15 years and graduated as an engineer at the age of 19.

I don’t know about you guys, but I was definitely planning my engineering journey at this age 😊.

In his initial years in College, Vijay struggled to understand the class lectures as he came from Hindi medium background. Despite all the odds stacked against him, he finished his graduation from one of the top colleges in India.

Most of us would not know, but Vijay also was the owner of a website called indiasite.net (he managed the site during his college days).

He later sold the website for US$1 Million.

Vijay also developed a CMS called X.S. communications that were used by some of the significant brand publications in India, including The Indian Express.

The company One97 (the company behind the brand Paytm) was established in the year 2001.

Source: Business Insider

The road to fame

The journey to making Paytm a success story was always going to be difficult. In those days, India was still an economy that relied heavily on cash transactions. Cashless transactions and that through a mobile app looked like an idea whose time had not come.

Yet, Vijay Shekhar Sharma believed in the idea and took a loan of Rs 8 Lakh with a 24% interest to fund his dreams.

In addition to this, he had to do multiple jobs in parallel – setting up LAN connections and working as a guest lecturer to support himself and make repayments to his loan.

Things started changing for Paytm in October 2011 when V.C. like Sapphire Ventures (SAP Ventures) invested US$10 Million in the growing startup.

In March 2015, Paytm sold a significant stake in Business (40%) to Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba Group’s affiliate arm – Ant Financial Services Group, an Alibaba Group affiliate.

It was followed by investment from Ratan Tata, the M.D. of Tata Sons, soon followed.

The funding rounds did not stop here and one of the fastest-growing companies in India soon got investments from Mountain Capital, a Taiwan-based MediaTek’s investment funds at a valuation of over $5 billion.

The most significant funding round further followed this for Paytm by a single investor – SoftBank. The investment raised Paytm’s evaluation to an estimated $10 billion.

In August 2018, Berkshire Hathaway invested US$356 million for 3%- 4% stake in Paytm.

On 25 November 2019, Paytm raised US$1 Billion in a funding round led by U.S. asset manager T Rowe Price along with existing investors Ant Financial and SoftBank Vision Fund.

From 2012 to 2017, Paytm received numerous awards and recognition. Among significant awards was the Outstanding Startup of the Year Award at Forbes Leadership Awards 2016 and Vijay himself won the IMPACT Person of the Year Award 2016.

In 2017 Vijay’s became the youngest billionaire in India with a net worth $2.1 Billion with a current healthy net worth of US$2.3 Billion.

To date, Vijay’s the only individual holding the majority shares of 14.7% in Paytm.

(Source: Your Story | Paytm)

Did you know?

In September 2020 – the google play store delisted Paytm’s official app from its play store.

Source: Wikipedia 

Tilak Mehta

Tilak Mehta - Successful Young Entrepreneurs in India

“I always marvelled at the swiftness and the efficiency of the dabbawala’s food delivery network, and I wondered if the network could be used to allow deliveries of even non-food items.”

(Source: starswikiinfo)

Founder of the company: Paper n Parcels

Net Worth: $9 Million

(Sources: Famous Wealthy People, IEM)

Earlier days & the road to Fame

Tilak Mehta has achieved success at such a young age that I had to combine two separate headings of ‘earlier days’ and ‘the road to fame’ in one.

Mehta was only 13 years old when he rose to fame by founding the Paper n’ Parcels company. He is currently 15.

The idea to create a one-day delivery service came from a personal inconvenience to the young prodigy.

On his vacation, Mehta spent some days at his uncle’s, and when he returned, he forgot his maths book there.

He badly needed the book, so he asked his father to collect the book from his uncle’s house. But his father couldn’t muster the courage to drive all the way only to get a book as he was already quite tired.

Mehta tried checking some courier services, but the cost was higher than the book’s price. That’s when he decided to launch a one-day delivery mail service.

Paper n Parcel uses India’s lunch delivery guys, dabbawallas, to deliver non-food items in return for a commission.
(Sources: celebrityqna, starswikiinfo))

Did you know?

Mehta has also spoken at a TEDx event and is the recipient of the Forbes Leadership Award 2018, India.

Peyush Bansal

Peyush Bansal - Successful Young Entrepreneurs in India

“It is about breaking your own standards every time and bringing an element of joy in the lives of your customers and employees.”

(Source: Wikibio.in)

Founder of the company: Lenskart

Net Worth: $80 million Approximately

Company’s Valuation: $4.5 billion

(Sources: Economic Times, DMERHaryana )

Earlier days

Peyush Bansal was born in 1985 in New Delhi, India.
After his early schooling at Don Bosco school in New Delhi, Bansal moved to Canada in 2002 to pursue his Mechanical Engineering degree at McGill University, Canada.

After graduation, he worked at Microsoft in the customer experience division.

But as genius and ambitious as Bansal was, the job requirement did not interest Bansal much.

Yep, the guy left the job at Microsoft out of sheer boredom!

He later returned to India and launched his first two startups: searchmycampus.com and Valyoo technologies. But it was his 3rd startup, Lenskart, which brought him all the success and riches.

The road to fame

Lanskart is an eyewear brand which provides all kinds of eyeglasses, sunglasses and contact lenses to its customer in more than 450 cities across India.

It was launched in 2010 in New Delhi along with his friend Amit Chaudhary. The company initially sold only contact lenses but is currently one of India’s leading eyewear brands.

Lanskart joined the unicorn club in 2019.
Since its success, Bansal has also ventured into launching many other eyewear brands, including John Jacobs (2015), Aqualens (2019), Lenskart Plus (2019), and Lenskart Vision Fund (2020).

In 2021, Bansal received unprecedented fame after joining Shark Tank India based on the US business reality show ‘Shark Tank’.

(Sources: Wikibio.in | DMERHaryana | wikiwiki.in | JagranTV)

Did you know?

Bansal loves to watch movies and travel in his free time. The young tech entrepreneur considers Bill Gates as his role model.

Kunal Shah

Kunal Shah - Successful Young Entrepreneurs in India

“When you haven’t had money all your life, the value you have for money is what it can do to other people’s lives.”

(Source: StarSunFolded)

Founder of the company: Cred

Net Worth: $809 million (2021)

Company’s Valuation: $6.4 billion

Source: Biz.crast | Tech Crunch

Earlier days

Born in 1983, Kunal is a resident of Mumbai, India.

Kunal’s family owns a pharmaceutical distribution business in South Bombay.

He graduated from Wilson College Mumbai and achieved a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy.

Shah like many other great entrepreneurs has had the honour of being a university dropout. He got dropped out of an MBA program at the Narsee Institute of Management Sciences (NIMSS)

Shah launched his first startup Paisaback – a cash-back promotion service to serve retailers.

Later, he founded his unicorn company Cred.

The road to fame

In 2018, Kunal Shah founded Cred – a reward-based credit payments app.

Cred offers six kinds of credit facilities to its customers. These facilities include

  • Cred RentPay
  • Cred Cash
  • Cred Pay
  • Cred Store
  • Cred Travel

According to Shah, Cred is a ‘TrustTech’ company with an aim to solve trust issues in Indian society.

Cred is considered to be India’s second-fastest-growing unicorn startup in India.

Earlier, Shah worked at Y-Combinator and founded a startup, FreeCharge.

FreeCharge is a cellphone bill recharging service. It was later acquired by Snapdeal for $400 million.

(Sources: FaceImpact | Golden | StarsUnfolded | Wikipedia | EverybodyWiki)

Did you know?

Shah has invested in 80 startups, including Unacademy and Razorpay (both unicorn startups).
Kunal has also been featured in a web series called “TVF Pitchers” as a judge of a startup event.

Sreelakshmi Suresh

Sreelakshmi Suresh - Successful Young Entrepreneurs in India

“I would like to become a software engineer. My dream is to develop an operating system, which is more user-friendly, and with more facilities than any other OS available.”

(Source: YouthKiAwaz)

Founder of the company: eDesign Technologies

Net Worth: $5 million

(Source: DailyCrazeLife )

Earlier days

Sreelakshmi Suresh was born in 1998 in Korala, India.
Her father reports her passion for computing since she was three years old and had already designed a website at 6.

She attends Presentation High Secondary School and has designed her school’s website.

She launched her own startup, eDesign, in 2009.

The road to fame

Sreelakshmi gained fame due to her exceptional web designing skills in 2006 when she was only 8 years old.

She was awarded National Child Award for Exceptional Achievement in 2008 by Sonia Gandhi.

Since then, she has received many awards, making an unending streak of global achievement awards.

Some of her the awards he received include

  • Golden Web Award (USA)
  • Sixty Plus Education Award (Canada)
  • Feeblemind’s Award of Excellence (UK)
  • Webmasters Ink Award (USA)
  • Penmarric Bronze Award (Canada).
  • Global Internet Directories Gold Award (USA),
  • WM8C Stamp of Excellence Award (USA)

Her startup, eDesign, offers various web design-related services.

(Sources: eDesign | YouthKiAwaz | LinkedIn | DailyCrazeLife | CelebsAgeWiki | Wikiframe | Wikipedia )

Did you know?

Suresh is the only member of the Association of American Webmasters ever. She became a member while still under the age of 18.
(Source: YouthKiAwaz)

Trishneet Arora

Trishneet Arora - Successful Young Entrepreneurs in India

“The best way to describe my professional title would be to call me an ethical hacker. I would hack people’s systems so that they could see the flaw in them and take over their cyber security.”

(Source: QuotesQuery)

Founder of the company: TAC Security

Net Worth: $5 million

Company’s Valuation: $1.5 million

(Source: StartUpTalky | Crunchbase)

Earlier days

Trishneet Arora was born in 1993 in Ludhiana, Punjab, India.

His father is a tax consultant, and his mother is a homemaker.

Arora dropped out of school in grade 8 and later completed his education till 12 through correspondence.

He describes his conversation with his parents telling them that he cannot understand history and geography. He expressed his love for computers and that working on computer hardware and software was his passion. These were the only subject that mattered to him.

Arora founded his cybersecurity company, TAC Security, in 2013 when he was just 19 years old.

The road to fame

Arora was named in Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia list 2018 and Fortune 40 Under 40 2019 List of India’s Brightest Business Minds.

His company TAC provides cyber protection to corporations against network vulnerabilities and data theft.

His clients include Reliance Industries, the Central Bureau of Investigation, Punjab Police (India) and Gujrat Police (India).

TAC provides vulnerability assessment and penetration testing services.

Source: Wikipedia | Wikibio | StarsUnfolded | Wikiwand)

Did you know?

There is a biographical film underproduction on the life of Arora. Filmmakers Sunil Bohra and Hansal Mehta are working on the project.
(Source: Wikiwand)

Suumit Shah

Suumit Shah - Successful Young Entrepreneurs in India

“We’re not building Shopify for India, we’re building Dukaan for the world, and I don’t think Shopify is street enough to solve the problems of the developing countries. SPEED is our moat – be it a store loading speed or the speed of shipping new features!”

Source: @suumitshah

Founder of the company: Dukaan

Company’s Valuation: $1.6 billion

(Source: TechCrunch )

Earlier days

Suumit Shah was born in 1990 in Mumbai.

Summit had to work in his uncle’s shop after attending school.

He did engineering in Sangali and started learning web design and development from one of his classmates in college and online courses.

Summit started his own business Risemetric, before founding his unicorn startup Dukaan.

The road to Fame

Launched in 2020, Dukaan is one of India’s most popular DIY platforms.

Dukaan allows merchants, retailers and other customers with no programming skills to launch their eCommerce store.

One can launch a store on the app in less than a minute.

The app was able to acquire 1.5 lakh businesses on the app within 20 days of its launch.

The app now serves more than 400 cities and contributes to making small retailers go digital.
(Sources: TradeFlock | Newsmen | LinkedIn)

Did you know?

Summit’s startup Dukaan currently serves more than 94 countries and 9,200 cities and has been joined by millions of business owners.
(Source: Dukaan)

Akhilendra Sahu

Akhilendra Sahu - Successful Young Entrepreneurs in India

“Customer satisfaction is the ticket to the success of your venture. Listen to your clients and offer them the best services.”

(Source: DeccanChronicle)

Founder of the company: ASTNT Technologies, The Scoop Beats, Cocial and others

Earlier days & the Road to Fame

Akhilendra Sahu was born in 2001, in Nasinghpur, Madhya Pradesh, India.

One of the youngest entrepreneurs in India, Sahu started his career as a freelancer in the media industry at the age of 16.

He received his Bachelor’s degree in Commerce from Justin College.

Akhilendra Sahi has become a serial entrepreneur who is the founder and CEO of multiple startups.

The man is an entrepreneur on some alien-level energy! 😉

His first startup is an IT company, ASTNT Technologies, which has now become a parent organisation of Technical NExt, ASTNT Media, ASTNT Newswire and StartUp 199.

Other than ASTNT tech startups, he co-founded Scoop Beats – an internet-based news platform.

He also owns a food delivery startup called FoodChilli and a social media platform called Cocial.

And he is just 21. His game has only just begun!
(Sources: LinkedIn | Wikipedia)

Did you know?

Sahu has authored two books as well

  • The YouTube: A Full History, 2019
  • The YouTuber: A Full Guide To Became Successful YouTuber, 2019

(Source: Wikipedia)

Farrhad Acidwalla

Farrhad Acidwalla - Successful Young Entrepreneurs in India

“If you’re failing and not learning from it, you’re wasting your time. You will learn far more from your smallest failure than your greatest success.”

(Source: GlobalYouth)

Founder of the company: Rockstah Media

Net Worth: $4 million

Company’s Valuation: $5 million, approximately

Source: Personage | Zoominfo

Earlier days and the road to fame

Farrhad Acidwalla was born in 1993 into a modest Parsi family in Pune.

Farrhad received his early education from Bombay Scottish School, Mahim. He graduated from Hassaeam Rijhumal College of Commerce and Economics, Mumbai.

Farrhad started his entrepreneurial journey at eight years old by buying a domain name from $10 he borrowed from his parents.

At the age of 12, he developed an aviation-dedicated web community which he later sold to an enthusiast for $1,200.

From the proceeds of this sale, he founded his startup Rockstah Media which has now become a multi-million dollar company. He was 16 at the time.

Acidwalla has grabbed many a title at his young age, including the “Country’s smartest Gen Z-e of the Moment” by Vogue India, “Top 10 best dressed male entrepreneurs in India” by Yahoo! Lifestyle, and “5th among the young entrepreneurs to watch” by CNN among others.

(Sources: StartUnfolded | Wikimylinks | GlobalYouth | Everybodywiki | Prabook )

Did you know?

In 2014, Acidwalla became the youngest lecturer at IIT Kharagpur’s Annual Entrepreneurship Summit.

He has taught entrepreneurship and digital marketing to undergrad and postgrad students in IITs, NITs, BITs, etc.

Divya Gandotra Tandon

Divya Gandotra Tandon - Successful Young Entrepreneurs in India

“All the strength and force of man comes from his faith in things unseen. He who believes is strong; he who doubts is weak. Strong convictions precede great actions.”

Source: ― Divya Gandotra Tandon, Secret Behind Creativity, Goodreads

Founder of the company: Scoop Beats Private Limited

Net Worth: $1.1 billion, approximately

(Source: Newsmen)

Earlier days

Born in Jammu in 2002, Divya is one of the youngest entrepreneurs and influential figures.

She studied at Kendriya Vidyalaya school and is currently a student of Computer Software Engineering at Prince Insititute of Innovative Technology (PIIT), Greater Noida.

The road to fame

She is the founder of Scoop Beats and CEO of ASTNT Technologies.

She is a celebrity and social media manager.
Twenty years old prodigy has worked for nearly 500 individual stars, influencers and companies.

She started her Youtube channel Technical Divya in 2015.

In 2017, she joined ASTNT, and a couple of years later, she launched her own media company, Scoop Beats.

(Sources: Newsmen | idivya.in )

Did you know?

Tandon has self-published two books:

  • The Secret Behind Creativity
  • Life: The journey of self-discovery

Both books are short reads (54 & 56 pages, respectively).

Divya Gokulnath

Divya Gokulnath - Successful Young Entrepreneurs in India

“I am definitely about intuition and also about numbers. I deeply look into numbers because that ensures we value money. Anything we do, we track every ROI. That’s very important for every startup and it keeps you grounded because you know you are never going to go wrong.”

(Source: SheThePeople)

Founder of the company: Byju’s

Net Worth: $3.05 billion (combined worth of Divya, her brother and husband, in 2020)

Company’s Valuation: $22 billion

Source: Divya’s Wikipedia | Byju’sWikipedia

Earlier days

Born in 1987 in Bengaluru, Divya Gokulnath is an educator and an entrepreneur. She co-founded ed-tech company Byju’s – a multi-billion dollar company.

She is the only child of her parents.

Divya studied at Frank Anthony Public School and did his Bachelor of Technology in Biotechnology from RV College of Engineering in Bengaluru.

She met her husband and co-founder of Byju’s in 2007 after graduation.

The road to Fame

Divya co-founded the ed-tech platform ‘Byju’s’ along with her husband in 2011.

Byju’s on its launch was an in-person online education platform which offered educational support to students after school.

Later in 2015, they launched Unacademy app, which offered educational videos.

The app grew exponentially during the Covid-19 pandemic when Byju’s provided free access to educational videos to millions of Indian students.

Divya helped the platform by managing the app’s user experience, content and brand marketing.
(Sources: Wikipedia | YourStory)

Did you know?

Divya is currently the Chair of the Indian Chamber of Commerce & Industry’s EdTech Task Force.

Gaurav Munjal

Gaurav Munjal

“Audacity is a trait that makes a founder a founder.”

(Source: Forbes India)

Founder of the company: Unacademy

Annual Income:  INR 9 Cr, approximately

Company’s Valuation: $3.44 billion

(Sources: Wikipedia | oyehero)

Earlier days

Born in 1991, Gaurav Munjal is an ambitious entrepreneur known in the industry as a straight-talker and go-getter.

He studied at St. Xavier’s School in Jaipur and pursued computer engineering in Mumbai.

He is a passionate programmer and started computer coding at 12.

The road to Fame

Gaurav Munjal founded India’s multi-billion dollars ed-tech platform Unacademy in 2015.

Earlier in 2010, Gaurav had started a youtube channel by the same name.

The company today is one of the biggest names in the Indian ed-tech industry and has started acquiring other platforms. 

  • Unacademy acquired Youtube-based online exam preparation platform WifiStudy for $10 million in 2018. 
  • It acquired NEET PG On-line Coaching platform PrepLadder in 2020 for $50 million.

These two are just a couple of examples from a long list of continued acquisitions by Unacademy.

Gaurav’s ambition is to turn Unacademy into a Netflix of education content. 

Did you know?

Gaurav is known for his extravagant lifestyle and for spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on private suits and private jet flights. 

(Source: MoneyControl)

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  1. Starting your dream business today may seem too daunting. Start with little steps and find the courage to be an entrepreneur

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