India is experiencing a completely new era of startups that are making their mark not only domestically but also worldwide. There are inspiring success tales of individuals who have forged their paths of invention and aspiration. Being a successful business entrepreneur is one of the most challenging jobs in the world! Establishing a business can take time, effort, and money, and more so growing a startup company from the ground up requires much more.
Nowadays, the world around us is humming with various startups, with some reaching new heights every day. Are you curious about the entrepreneurs behind these successful projects and their tedious yet oh-so-inspiring journey? If your answer is affirmative, then browse through these five of the most remarkable Indian startup stories of entrepreneurs that will motivate you to no end.
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5 Indian Startup Stories That’ll Inspire You to Keep Fighting Despite the Odds
1. How a bad experience of buying a mattress turned into a million-dollar startup | Wakefit
Frequently, we have bad experiences while using different products; however how many of us take a stand and decide to bring a revolution, let alone a difference in that arena? Well, Ankit Garg, Director & Co-founder at Wakefit, got motivated to start a sleep solutions company after having a bad experience of buying a mattress. He realised that the products lacked innovation, were pricey and the companies didn’t understand the science of sleep.
Along with Chaitanya Ramalingegowda, he founded Wakefit over ‘chai pe charcha’, with a vision to provide premium-quality sleep products without burning a hole in the pocket of customers. Initially started with only two variants of mattresses, the company gradually expanded into all types of sleep products like pillows, bed frames, mattress protectors, and whatnot! Today, Wakefit stands tall at a whopping value of over 2,800 crores and plans to reach new heights further.
A couple of years before, no one ever thought that people would consider buying a mattress online as this is something that people, particularly Indians, love to buy from brick and mortar stores after being satisfied in every aspect – but today the equation has changed. All thanks to Wakefit, it has revolutionised the concept of quality sleep.
2. The Platform That Made Online Eyewear Shopping the Norm | Lenskart
Just like mattresses, eyewear is something people avoid buying online as the satisfaction one derives after physically trying it on is unmatchable. However, Piyush Bansal, made the impossible possible and succeeded in making Lenskart one of the biggest unicorns in India.
It all started in 2010 when Piyush discovered that the eyewear industry is very unorganised and neglected by the e-commerce giants such as Amazon and Flipkart. Well, Lenskart is the brainchild of this discovery. In the beginning, it started as only an online platform. But now the company has its physical stores all across the nation as they were familiar with the Indian mindset of physically feeling and trying on the product before investing in the same.
The company also understands that Indians love trying multiple options before settling for the right one, which is why it offers a diverse range of eyewear with 5000+ frames and 45+ lenses. Its virtual 3D try-on feature gives them a competitive advantage over its rivals. With a net worth of 4.5 billion dollars, Lenskart has joined the list of the most prominent unicorn startups in our country.
3. The Quintessential Testament to It’s Never too Late to Turn Your Dream Into Reality | Nykaa
Falguni Nayar has set an example for all women entrepreneurs and has proved the old saying right that age is just a number. At the age of 50, she started Nykaa with her funds in the year 2012. Today, this brand needs no introduction as it’s one of the biggest lifestyle and fashion portals in India offering a wide range of products from cosmetics to skincare, fragrances to wellness, and apparel to intimate wear for both, men and women, the list is endless.
Not only this, they provide additional freebies like makeup tutorials, beauty and fashion blogs, DIY, and magazines. Their USP is the authenticity of their products as they get it directly from the manufacturers thereby not compromising on the quality of products. What is also interesting to note is their brilliant marketing strategies – instead of relying on traditional publicity techniques, they made the most of digital marketing through social media and youtube.
In 2021, Nykaa opened its IPO and it was oversubscribed nearly 82 times in just a matter of 3 days and was listed on BSE at a premium of 80%. Apart from its virtual presence, Nykaa also operates its offline stores in almost all the tier-1 cities and further targets to mark its presence in tier-2 and 3 cities as well. With their dreamy tagline of ‘Your beauty, Our passion’, Nykaa is a blessing for all the lovely ladies and men out there!
4. When Your Hard Work and Struggles Pay Off in the Most Spectacular Way | Zerodha
The story of this unicorn startup is highly inspiring. Nitin Kamath was introduced to the stock market when he was merely 17 through a friend and then there was no turning back for him. He used to trade during the day and work at a call centre later at night to make both ends meet. After trading for almost a decade and facing the two biggest market crashes of 2001-02 and 2008-09, he understood the nitty-gritty of the stock market.
Moreover, he also noticed that most of the youngsters abstained from trading due to the hefty brokerages involved in the process, and with this in mind, he started the biggest stockbroking firm in India. He vowed to give investors a user-friendly, hassle-free, and a cost-efficient experience in the capital market ecosystem. Zerodha is a blend of Zero and Rodha (a Sanskrit word that means impediment). Therefore, Zerodha essentially means no impediments or obstructions while trading.
Through this platform, he primarily targeted the youth in the society who is more tech-savvy so that they can also invest and contribute to the country’s financial growth. The icing on the cake is the low commission it charges from its customers. What’s more, without even spending exorbitant sums of money on advertising, today, Zerodha is the biggest discount broking firm in India. It has proved that word of mouth is the best publicity and that giving quality service is the key to entrepreneurial success.
5. A Startup That Promises Nirvana | BoAt
Next up on the list is a Delhi-based startup company that though faced many challenges initially, it only emerged stronger every time. In a short period, the company became the ‘number 1 brand for truly wireless and ear-wear in India’ and the ‘5th largest wearable brand in the world’ in 2020. Not only this, it was the official audio partner for 6 IPL teams in 2021. Yes, we are talking about none other than boAt, plug into nirvana.
Founded in 2016, what sets this brand apart from its customers is that they were able to strike the right balance between cost and quality. Moreover, they are known for improvising their products and carving out a niche for themselves in the world of audiophiles. At first, it was a bootstrapped business, which means that the owners invest their capital without seeking any funding from investors or banks; however, it is reported that boAt would soon come up with its IPO through its parent company, Imagine Marketing.
Although boAt has several competitors in the market like GoNoise, Mivi, and Skull Candy, it is fighting against all odds to sustain its position as the No. 1 Indian ear-wear audio brand. The brand plans to offer more innovative products, not letting Indians rely upon any foreign brand.
This sums up the startup stories of some of the most dynamic Indian entrepreneurs, who have established milestones in their respective industries. We hope their journeys give you that extra push you need to turn your dreams into reality!
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What are some key factors for success in a startup?
Key factors for success in a startup include a clear and compelling vision, a unique and innovative product or service, a strong team with complementary skills, a solid business plan and strategy, a willingness to take risks and pivot as needed, and a focus on customer needs and feedback.
How can entrepreneurs turn their startup dream into reality?
Entrepreneurs can turn their startup dream into reality by doing their research and market analysis, validating their idea with potential customers, building a strong team and network, developing a business plan and strategy, securing funding and resources, and taking action to bring their product or service to market.
What challenges do startups typically face?
Startups typically face challenges such as competition from established players in the market, limited resources and funding, hiring and retaining talent, scaling the business, and navigating regulatory and legal hurdles. Successful startups are able to overcome these challenges by being agile, adaptable, and customer-focused.
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