Breaking taboos that only males can run successful businesses, the female entrepreneurs in India are not only making a mark but also showing others that they equal if not better at it.
Here is a list of 13 such female entrepreneurs in India that over the past few years have changed the outlook of startups in the country:
1) Swati Bhargava (CashKaro)
Brought up in the small town of Ambala, Swati Bhargava has achieved a lot in the few short years of her career.
Swati is known for being the co-founder of CashKaro.com, India’s largest Cashback & Coupons website. She over the years has taken CashKaro to new heights and made it the only VC backed cashback site in India.
She is currently co-chair at H2 India, a global leadership network for the digital industries all over the world. Her latest achievement was making the Fortune’s 40 under 40 lists in June 2019.
2) Shraddha Sharma (YourStory)
Another well-known face in the list of female entrepreneurs in India is YourStory’s Shraddha Sharma.
She started YourStory back in 2008 and after a rollercoaster journey has taken the media platform to new heights. Under Shradha Your Story is now Asia’s leading media platform for entrepreneurs.
YourStory has told stories of over 40,000 entrepreneurs and reaches out to over 10 million niche readers all over the world.
3) Naiyya Saggi (BabyChakra)
Mumbai based Naiyya Saggi is the founder of BabyChakra which helps parents to make the right maternity & childcare decisions.
With BabyChakra, Naiyya brought the massive maternal and childcare industry of India online and to the digital economy.
Founded in 2015, BabyChakra has rapidly become the largest platform for young mothers. What’s more, their app is now the #1 parenting app on Playstore in India.
Besides running BabyChakra, Naiyya is also a mentor at Facebook’s flagship program #Sheleadstech. At #Sheleadstech she mentors the acceleration of Indian women founders in the tech industry and guides them to become the next best female entrepreneurs in India.
4) Falguni Nayar (Nykaa)
A graduate of IIM (Ahmedabad), Falguni Nayar has a long list of achievements under her belt.
Though Falguni is more known as founder and CEO of Nykaa.com, she had achieved a lot under Kotak even before she found Nykaa.
After serving Kotak for over 18 years, Falguni quit to start Nykaa which today has made it easy to access beauty products across India.
Falguni now aims to make Nykaa into IPO and has recently become an omnichannel with the launch of 17 Nykaa stores in PAN India.
5) Rashmi Daga (FreshMenu)
Just like Falguni Nayar, Rashmi Daga started out at IIM-Ahmedabad and began her career in 2003 as a business manager in IBM.
Though she had a very successful career in the corporate industry, she gave it all up in 2014 to lay the foundation of FreshMenu.
FreshMenu offers a daily-changing menu with recipes which are not just from India but from around the world. These include keto-friendly menus, LCHP (low carb-high protein) menus, and salad meals.
Its assorted menu makes FreshMenu popular with people who are health-conscious or dieters as they also deliver. They have a well-developed delivery team which sort these food items in desk-friendly packaging that are convenient for everyone.
Adding to her list of achievements, Rashmi in 2018 won Economic Times’s Startup award in Facebook Woman Ahead category.
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6) Shubhra Chadda (Chumbak)
Belonging to a defence family, Shubhra Chadda as a child travelled all over India till her family settled down in Bangalore.
After working at various multinational companies, it was only after the birth of her daughter that she got the idea for her business.
Shubhra always wanted to be an entrepreneur and run her own business. The idea of Chumbak became a reality in 2009 and from there on there is no looking back.
Her idea with Chumbak was to add a bit of fun and colour to travellers so that they could take back a little piece of India with them. Within 5 years they evolved to become a lifestyle brand that loves to change the way India looks at design.
Over the past decade, the “quirky” business has expanded to over 44 stores in over 12 cities. Chumbak now also offers vibrant products across 100 categories and plans to expand on to the global map.
7) Upasana Taku (MobiKwik)
A Kashmiri girl raised in Surat, Upasana Taku compleated her BTech from NIT, Jalandhar before moving to the US for her masters.
After working with various prestigious companies like PayPal, Upasna moved back to India in 2008. She and her husband found MobiKwik in 2010 after they realised that platform like PayPal was unheard of in India.
With MobiKwik, Upasana now is part of a pivotal company in India which has India’s digital future in mind. She plans to lead MobiKwik into a financial distribution hub that caters to the financial needs of billions.
She now provides her customers access to all financial services such as pay, borrow, save, and invest on MobiKwik. Over the last decade, MobiQwik has become a household brand for millions of Indian users & merchants.
Upasana now aims to facilitate $ 20 billion worth of transactions through MobiKwik in the next 18 months.
8) Radhika Aggarwal (ShopClues)
Radhika Aggarwal is considered one of the most successful women entrepreneurs in India.
She started her entrepreneurial journey with FashionClues which was a social portal for NRI women. It was from there that she moved on to ShopClues, which started out with a small team working out of a basement. She is one of the most successful business woman in India.
Within a short period of just five years, she and ShopClues become a household name in India. While she calls herself an ‘accidental entrepreneur’ she admits that it was family and close friends that motivated her to follow her passion.
After finding ShopClues, Radhika became India’s first woman to enter the Unicorn Club.
9) Rati Shetty (BankBazaar)
Born into a family of businessmen, Rati Shetty was naturally inclined to become one of the top female entrepreneurs. With BankBazaar that is exactly what Rati plans to do.
Rati recently revealed that 2007 was the turning point for her when she tried to avail a home loan and realised that is was not an easy feat. She had approached various banks back then and soon became frustrated as the process was tedious and time-consuming.
Hoping to change that she along with her husband and brother co-founded BankBazaar.com and it has been no looking back since then.
Over the past decade, BankBazaar has changed the way Indians get their loans, credit cards & insurance and made it more accessible. Her achievement definitely makes her worthy of being called one of the most successful and famous women entrepreneurs in India.
Though BankBazaar started out in Chennai (2008), over the past 10 years they have expanded their business to Bangalore and Mumbai. BankBazaar’s Android App has now crossed 5m downloads mark and achieved it organically that is without paid promotions.
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10) Manisha Raisinghani (LogiNext)
LogiNext is among the fastest-growing SaaS companies in Asia which provide solutions to manage and optimise logistics and field workforce operations.
Founded by Manisha Raisinghani and her college classmate in 2014, LogiNext uses an algorithm that uses the provided information to offer a leaner, faster and self-orchestrated solution to a company’s logistics problems at a much cheaper rate.
Though still new, the company has already expanded across India and has got some heavyweights clients such as Decathlon and Maruti Suzuki.
Manisha is the only female in the logistic industry in India and is slowly but surely making a huge impact in the world of technology.
11) Kanika Tekriwal (JetSetGo)
Kanika Tekriwal knew early on that entrepreneurship was in her blood and that she would be running a business when she grew up.
With JetSetGo that opportunity knocked early and she soon became one of the 100 most inspirational women in the world.
Founded in 2014, Kanika aims to make JetSetGo ‘the Uber of the skies.’ She now runs a business that offers people a platform where they can travel to multiple cities in a day.
In 2018 JetSetGo expanded to have its own SkyShuttle service and now offers jets and helicopters to individuals who wish to avoid wasting time.
12) Chetna Gala Sinha ( Mann Deshi Bank)
At 60, Chetna Gala Sinha is one of the oldest female entrepreneurs in India and in this list too.
An Indian social activist working to empower women of rural India, Chetna started the Mann Deshi Bank back in 1996.
She had aimed to teach women entrepreneurial skills and providing them access to land and other means of production. Mann Desi Bank is only for women and is currently one of the largest microfinance banks in Maharashtra.
Being a huge success globally, Chetna was invited as a speaker at the World Economic Forum a few years ago.
13) Prukalpa Sankar (SocialCops & Atlan)
Delhi based Prukalpa Sankar had not even graduated from Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University when she founded SocialCops.
With SocialCops she wanted to solve the use of data to confront critical global challenges. She soon realised that while real-time data was regularly used in the finance world, it was hardly used in other sectors.
Targeting this as their potential market Prukalpa made ScialCops one of the world’s leading data for good company. She along with her partner soon built India’s entire National Data Platform.
They were also behind Ujjwala which is as Gas subsidy for 50m Indian women below the poverty line.
Parukalpa has now founded Atlan which has over 200 data teams in 50 countries managing customers such as Unilever and Mahindra Group. Her success might soon take her to new heights to become one of the best female entrepreneurs in India.
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