Name the first 5 global entrepreneurs that come to your mind.
When I was asked to, I named Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, Jeff Bezos, Jack Ma and Bill Gates, while I still had Elon Musk, Richard Branson and Warren Buffett at the back of my mind.
Now, can you name 5 Indian entrepreneurs apart from Ratan Tata and Mukesh Ambani? It takes a while, doesn’t it? And that’s surprising, given that we are home to 82 billionaires of the world.
India ranks third in the list of countries with the highest concentration of entrepreneurs globally. Billionaires or not, every one of these great minds bring something unique to the table and are absolutely worth the mention. Sure the global leaders are a pinnacle of inspiration, but we have our own aces to show off as you read further.
The Sequential Entrepreneur
These people are living example of never back down due to their repeated attempts at entrepreneurship. Elon Musk is a prime example due to the numerous projects that run simultaneously under his stewardship.
India too has an increasing number of sequential entrepreneurs, take the co-founder of Myntra and Hoopos (e-commerce websites) Raveen Sastry as an example. He has been a part of multiple projects with his most recent contribution being the co-founder of NudgeSpot, a platform that bridges businesses and customers.
The Start-up Billionaires
The start-up era in India has been kind, especially with considerable support from the government in the past 5 years. India has seen a fair number of startups turning into full-fledged business giants given the short span of time it took them to cross the billionaire milestone.
Some well-known Start-up Billionaires that most people would only recognize from the names of their companies are Flipkart co-founders Sachin and Binny Bansal; Snapdeal co-founders Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal; Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma; and Ola co-founders Bhavish Aggarwal and Ankit Bhati. The fact that they became billionaires in such a short period of time is also one of the reason most of them are still known mostly under the radar.
The Social Entrepreneur
Entrepreneurs such as these are the gems that society today really needs, but with the grim outlook of the nation’s social mass, they remain unnoticed. Social Entrepreneurs have built their businesses around tackling real life issues related to poverty, water shortage, education and job provision among many other such problems that ails society.
Atul Satija, former employee of mobile advertising company InMobi has started The Nudge Foundation, which strives towards the removal of poverty through skill training and other initiatives. Similarily, Boond is a clean energy enterprise founded by Rustam Sengupta to solve clean energy problems in the rural areas of the country.
The company has sold more than 7,500 solar energy systems and impacted the lives of 50,000 people in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.
Visionary and Thought Leaders
What do you do when you have achieved your goals? You enjoy the fruits you’ve worked so hard to achieve. According to Maslow, the final need of life is self-actualization. This can be achieved by helping out others climb his proverbial pyramid (The Hierarchy of Needs Theory).
The entrepreneurs of this category are done with establishing their startups and are now spending time guiding young and budding entrepreneurs foray into the market. Imagine having a mentor like Richard Branson to guide your start-up. These visionaries may also act as angel investors, making personal investments in ideas they like. Flipkart’s Bansals, and Snapdeal’s Bahl and Bansal fall into this category.
Token Salary Billionaires
These are the great minds who take salary as low as one dollar annually. Currently, such entrepreneurs could be found in Silicon Valley, America and are yet to emerge in India. Most people believe that entrepreneurs like these opt for token salaries to save on taxes.
With more than a million micro enterprises and start-ups currently on the block, the number of entrepreneurs on the way to join the billion dollar crew is on the rise. Foreign investors like Softbank and Tencent are more inclined to invest in Indian start-ups just so they can capitalize on the sheer size of the Indian consumer market. The most recent news of such backing is Ritesh Agarwal led OYO Rooms, which is close to a $2bn funding by Tencent.
The companies in this category have ideas that aren’t just innovative but also have clear potential to make their company into a recognized brand. Most importantly, they are motivated and fairly young with ambitious dreams, and that is something investors look for in an entrepreneur.
With startups scoring big in investment rounds across the country, entrepreneurship has become a rising trend in India. If even 10 percent of these emerging businesses succeed in achieving their goals, we can expect to see more brands like Flipkart, Snapdeal and Ola in the coming future.