We take a look at some hugely influential women entrepreneurs in the world of business who shunned regular lives as salaried executives or the comfort of a 9-5 job to follow their dreams. While there is an element of risk involved in entrepreneurship, there is nothing like the satisfaction when your pet project grows wings and really takes off. These brave women are examples of such dreams, read on;
1. Aditi Gupta
Aditi Gupta, co-founder of Menstrupedia.com
She is an intrepid braveheart who is the co-founder of menstrupedia.com after being deeply concerned with the issue of menstruation that is still a taboo subject in most households. She grew up in Jharkhand and witnessed firsthand the difficulties faced by women during this trying phase and decided to do something about it. Her illustrated Hindi comic books which educate girls about menstruation is considered a path breaker and is currently being used in over 75 schools in the country for awareness and education. Menstrupedia.com was founded in 2012 and since then has made rapid inroads in the Indian heartland and beyond. Aditi was listed on the Forbes India U-30 list, no mean achievement!
2. Anisha Singh
Anisha Singh, co-founder of Mydala.com
The founder and CEO of Mydala.com, which has a net worth of $150 million, is surprisingly humble. Highly educated with a Master’s degree in political communication and an MBA from America in Information Systems, she did not want to settle for a regular 9-5 job. This led her to start Kipnis Software Solutions in the USA, which manages digital content for numerous corporate clients and bigwigs, she moved up the ladder with the founding of Mydala.com which happens to be one of the largest coupon providers in India. There was an initial investment of $4.4 million, followed by a successful round of angel investing which raised 1.1 crore rupees. The company is looking at the third round of investment to the tune of $80 million. Her target is to make an annual turnover of Rs 100 crores within the next 3 years.
3. Ankita Gaba
Ankita Gaba, co-founder of Socialsamosa.com
She dons many hats as an entrepreneur, a consultant and also a social media strategist. She is the co-founder of social samosa.com which is a storehouse of Indian social media trends and thoughts, news and dialogue. The website was launched in 2011 with a total investment of about $9 million. It makes money from advertising, monetization of data along with e-commerce and affiliate marketing. The annual revenue generated by socialsamosa.com is to the tune of $5 million. After 3 years, the portal was sold for a sum of 2-3 crores. Ankita’s thorough knowledge of social media helps her as a consultant to various social media agencies where she networks and builds teams.
4. Ashwini Asokan
Ashwini Asokan, co-founder of Mad Street Den
She, along with her husband is the founder of Mad Street Den, a cloud platform based company that uses artificial intelligence to identify facial expressions and faces with a camera. Her career started with Intel in Silicon Valley which she left to focus on her dream project. Started in 2013, Mad street Dan received initial funding of $1.5 million as seed money and grew from there on, generating money through advertisements, affiliate marketing and also from e-commerce, which is a sub-platform of the company. The estimated annual revenue of Ashwini Asokan’s dream child is $1million.
5. Chitra Gurnani Daga
Chitra Gurnani Daga, co-founder of Thrillophilia
Chitra is the co-founder of Thrillophilia, an Indian adventure travel company that ensures authentic local experiences with carefully selected guides and vendors. She is an alumnus of the Indian School of Business and jumped in head-on as an entrepreneur who learned as she worked. Founded in 2009, the company acts as an escrow between paying customers and local suppliers. Initial capital invested was $1.3 million and generates annual revenue of $6 million.
6. Gurleen Kaur
Gurleen Kaur, co-founder of Hareepatti.com
She is the founder and CEO of Hareepatti, a firm that advises customers of matters in finance, short and long-term monetary goals along with solutions for investments. Gurleen is well educated in matters of money, having a BFIA degree in Financial and Investment Analysis. Hareepati makes money from paying clients of their services along with advertisements and affiliate marketing. The company was set up in 2006 with quality service in mind and has grown by leaps and bounds since. It sees annual revenue of $27.5 million.
7. Neeru Sharma
Neeru Sharma, co-founder of Infibeam.com
Neeru Sharma is the co-founder of one of the largest e-commerce platforms in India, Infibeam.com. She also founded Picquare.com which is a personalized photograph printing company. Infibeam.com was founded in 2007 while Picquare was founded in 2005. The initial investment for Infibeam was a whopping Rs 450 crore. The e-commerce portal generates revenue of 91 crore rupees. Neeru has expanded the website to include online retailing, along with software and internet services.
8. Radhika Ghai Agarwal
Radhika Ghai Agarwal, co-founder of Shopclues.com
the co-founder of ShopClues.com, Radhika previously was employed at Goldman Sachs in New York. Polished and armed with an MBA from Washington University and a postgraduate degree in Advertising and public relations which help her to run the site, Radhika co-founded ShopClues.com in 2011. Initial investments for the online marketplace which earns money from adverts and affiliate marketing besides commissions for sales was a huge $100 million. ShopClues is valued at $12 million and generates annual revenue of Rs.188 Crore.
9. Richa Kar
Richa Kar, co-founder of Zivame.com
the founder of the online lingerie store Ziavme.com which makes money as a platform of thousands of styles, she is unconventional in a choice of online business, but nevertheless successful. Ziavme.com was founded in 2011 and received an investment of $6 million. She earns whenever a sale is made, and also from advertisements and affiliate marketing. The annual turnover of her portal is negative at the moment, but all that is set to change with offline stores in major metros in the pipeline.
10. Suchi Mukherjee
Suchi Mukherjee, co-founder of Limeroad.com
Suchi is the founder of Limeroad.com, an e-commerce platform for urbane women, which I hugely popular amongst fashionable ladies as the latest styles are displayed artfully with taste and substance. Limeroad.com was founded in 2012 and earns money through commissions on sales as well as affiliate marketing and advertisements. Initial funding of around $20 million and annual revenue of $7.2 million sees Limeroad.com well placed in the world of online retail and e-commerce.
The detailed bios of these enterprising ladies show that determined and educated women can definitely make a success out of their lives as entrepreneurs and leaders in business, which was not long ago a male-dominated bastion. Times are changing and there is need to rewire our thinking and judge a person by his/her achievements and not by gender.