A few decades earlier an intrepid breed of Indian entrepreneurs made quite a killing in the Silicon Valley. These entrepreneurs — Vinod Khosla, Kanwal Rekhi, KB Chandra Shekhar, Gururaj Deshpande and several others, today no less than legends of the Valley, are the epitome of fearless, technology wizards who made a mark in the global IT scenario. Though much of their success has been attributed to the startup ecosystem of the West, one can not over look the sheer grit, determination, confidence and mostly the passion that drove them to achieve the dizzying heights they reached.
A similar wave is ready to rise in India today. The foundation of India’s entrepreneurial ecosystem was laid and led by stalwarts like Azim Premji, NRN Murthy, Shiv Nadar who observed the opportunities in the IT services space and went on to build global giants like Wipro, Infosys and HCL. They were responsible for bringing the potential of Indian IT industry to the forefront, albeit a services one. Now post the outsourcing wave, a new breed of young and dynamic entrepreneurs are trying to make a killing in India, highlighting the potential of the country as something much more than a mere IT service provider. Heralding the new wave of Indian entrepreneurship this new generation is unorthodox in their ideas, quick to asses opportunities and most important unafraid of failure. Further more, they are on the threshold of creating a few legends of their own — starting a unique venture, nurturing it and taking to the peak of glory that not many have managed to attain. Observing this change, in this Leadership special issue, we bring to you the story of four entrepreneurs, who explored new avenues and managed to grow their ventures from a Startup to renowned leaders in their respective space.
In the last decade, India saw several changes in its economic policies; a liberalization wave which brought in several positive changes for entrepreneurs. The country’s ecosystem is blooming with growth in infrastructure, manpower, and finance. Today, the country’s government has risen to be one of the biggest support systems for entrepreneurs.
But this was not the scenario in the country when Anupam Mital, Aravind Kajaria, Sanjay Nayak and Deep Karla started with their entrepreneur dreams. They literally had to create a market of their own as the markets for what they initiated did not exist in the country then. The infrastructure present was poor and there was lack of reputation for the country in the global market.
The hardships they faced and how they managed to survive in a highly competitive and financial recession prone market comes down right to their total belief in their products and companies and their sheer passion to succeed.