A recent study on Indian startups by the IBM Institute for Business Value and Oxford Economics found that 90% of startups in India fail within the first five years. Thousands of internet entrepreneurs are being minted in India every year. Billions of dollars were poured into the new ventures by investment firms. However, only a few have stood out with their startups. Many of those are on the way to achieving unicorn status. India’s list of richest startup founders in 2017 still contains many familiar names, but some have slipped off — Snapdeal’s Kunal Bahl and Ola’s Bhavish Aggarwal are no longer in the top 15 richest Indian entrepreneurs.
Below is the complete list of the richest startup founders in India.
Bhavin Turakhia, Directi/Media.net
Bhavin Turakhia is an Indian entrepreneur, CEO and co-founder of Directi. He is also the founder and CEO of Flock, Radix, CodeChef, and Ringo, as well as the co-founder of Media.net and Zeta.In 2016, Bhavin Turakhia was ranked as the 95th richest person in India, with a net worth of US$1.3 billion, along with his brother Divyank Turakhia. Bhavin Turakhia has jumped to first place after seeing a four-fold increase in his wealth in 2017. With a net worth of Rs. 11,500 crore, Bhavin Turakhia is currently India’s richest tech entrepreneur.
Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Paytm
Vijay Shekhar Sharma is an Indian entrepreneur and founder of mobile payments company, Paytm. In 2005, he started One97 Communications which offered mobile content like news, cricket scores, ringtones, jokes and exam results. One97 is the parent company of Paytm, which was launched in 2010. In 2017, Vijay Shekhar Sharma was featured in the World Billionaire’s List by Forbes, and became India’s youngest business man to be featured on the list.
Softbank has made its biggest investment by sealing a funding round of Rs 9,000 crore ($1.4 billion) in One 97 Communications which owns mobile payments provider Paytm, making it the country’s second most valuable startup with worth $8 billion. Vijay Shekhar Sharma, now has a net worth of Rs. 9,000 crore.
Related Post: 11 Heroes who helped build the Indian startup industry
Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal, Flipkart
Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal, co-founders of India’s most valuable internet firm Flipkart, lost their billionaire status after the e-commerce firm’s valuation fell in its latest funding round. The Bansals became the first internet billionaires in 2015 when Flipkart raised $700 million at a valuation of $15 billion. Their fortunes were then estimated to be worth roughly $1.3 billion each, according to Forbes magazine. Now, Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal have worth of Rs. 5,400 crore each.
Related Post: How Sachin Bansal started: Life of Flipkart founder
Ganesh Krishnan, Portea Medical
Ganesh Krishnan is a successful serial India entrepreneur with four successful green field ventures and exits. Ganesh’s last venture, TutorVista was acquired by Pearson for $213 million. His current venture, Portea Medical, provides technlogy-led home health care to the Indian consumer. He also mentors, incubates and funds startups and is strategic investor and promoter of several Indian consumer Internet and ecommerce companies including Bigbasket.com, Bluestone.com, and Avagmah.com. Ganesh Krishnan has a net worth of Rs. 5,100 crore.
Sanjeev Bikhchandani, Info Edge
Sanjeev Bikhchandani is an Indian entrepreneur, founder and CEO of Info Edge which owns Naukri.com. In 1990, Sanjeev Bikhchandani started two Internet companies Indmark and Info Edge, along with a partner. Info Edge is India’s premier online classifieds company in recruitment (Naukri.com, NaukriGolf.com, Quadranglesearch.com, FirstNaukri.com), matrimony (Jeevansathi.com), real estate (99acres.com), education (Shiksha.com) and related services. Currently, the company has investments in Zomato Media Private Limited (Zomato.com), Applect Learning Systems Private Limited (Meritnation.com), Etechaces Marketing and Consulting Private Limited (Policybazaar.com), Kinobeo Software Private Limited (MyDala.com), Canvera Digital Technologies Private Limited (Canvera.com), and many others. Sanjeev Bikhchandani has now net worth of Rs. 4,800 crore.
Vishal Mehta, Infibeam.com
After working for Dell and Amazon in the US for five years, Vishal Mehta returned to India in 2007 and started Infibeam along with a group of Amazon employees. He funded the company by selling his personal assets rather than opting for external equity funding. Infibeam.com started as an automobile portal in 2007, but later turned into an online retailer. In 2017, Infibeam has merged with CCAVenue, in a deal that valued the payment gateway at $289 million. Now, Vishal Mehta has a net worth of Rs. 3,500 crore.
Dhiraj Rajaram, Mu Sigma
Dhiraj Rajaram is the founder and chairman of Mu Sigma Inc,an Indian multinational data analytics company. After completing his education, Dhiraj worked as a management consultant at PwC in the US and Booz Allen Hamilton India. After quitting his job from Booz Allen Hamilton India, Dhiraj started data analytics company Mu Sigma Inc in 2004. Dhiraj Rajaram was named to Fortune Magazine’s list of 40 under 40 in 2013, and won The Economic Times “Entrepreneur of Year” award in 2014. Currently, Dhiraj has a net worth of Rs. 2,500 crore.
Related Post: India’s 15 most successful female entrepreneurs
Rahul Sharma, Micromax
Rahul Sharma is an Indian entrepreneur, founder of YU Televentures and the co-founder of Micromax Informatics. Rahul is currently serving a CEO of Micromax Informatics since April 1, 2007. While the impact of demonetisation had its impact on Indian players, Chinese smartphone brands – OPPO, Vivo, Lenovo and Xiaomi – continued to grow at the expense of Indian brands. However, in terms of overall Indian smartphone market share in 2016 Micromax still stood at No.2 spot with a 11% share. Hence, Rahul Sharma still has net worth of Rs. 1,400 crore.
VSS Mani, Just Dial
In 1996, VSS Mani started Just Dial, which provides online and telephone business listings service. In 2006, after two unsuccessful attempts, Just Dial finally got in private equity investment through SAIF Partners. US hedge fund Tiger Global put in Rs 77 crore. In 2012, Just Dial raised a further Rs 327 crore from Sequoia and SAP Ventures before it went public in 2013 and its investors partially cashed out. In 2012, Just Dial obtained approval from Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) for its proposed Initial public offering (IPO). In May 2013, Just Dial went public. VSS Mani has now net worth of Rs. 1,100.
Byju Raveendran, Byjus
In 2003, during his two months break from an overseas job as a service engineer, Byju Raveendran decided to help some of his friends appearing for CAT in Bangalore. It was an informal way of helping, and he also took the exam, and scored 100 percentile. He started teaching some of his friends, and took up the test yet again in 2005 without any preparation, and scored a perfect 100 percentile yet again. This time he also appeared for IIM-A, B, C interviews and cleared all of them. However, decided against pursuing MBA and instead saw potential in teaching students how to crack CAT, and started Byju’s.
Byju’s recently raised $50 million co-funded by Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan’s investment arm The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI), Sequoia Capital, Sofina, Lightspeed Ventures and Times Internet Ltd. Now, Raveendran Byju has a net worh of Rs. 1,000 crore.
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