India's persistent development in the startup ecosystem has paved the way for many women to accomplish their entrepreneurial dream. Over the past few decades, women's empowerment is soaring high all over the country. In a nation like India where women are slashed with innumerous restrictions, such transformation is commendable. According to sources, nearly 58 percent of women entrepreneurs began their entrepreneurial journey in their 20s. While about 73percent report a revenue close to Rs.10 lakh in a financial year. It is also astonishing to learn that about 57 percent of these entrepreneurs have aced the race all by themselves with anybody's assistance. These women not just elevated their careers but the country's economy as well.
Niti Aayog's CEO, Amitabh Kant has stated that a year-on-year high growth rate of 9-10 percent is possible with women entrepreneurs' contributions. He adds, “As per a McKinsey study, we can add $700 billion to India’s economy if we reach the worldwide average. Wherever we have opened up opportunities for women, they have done much better than men.”
Well! these women who have achieved big at a very tender age despite being surrounded in the constrictive environment are certainly wondered women. Let us meet five such courageous wonder women who created a strong social impact and brought in innovation.
The engineering graduate from BITS Pilani had secured a retail consultant role at Spencers Retail and SAP. This is where Richa learnt the gap the Indian market has when it came to lingerie shopping. As most of the Indian salespeople were men, many women were not comfortable to shop according to their preference. After acquiring eight years of experience in the retail sector, Richa had decided to do something on her own and choose to bridge the gap in the Indian market using the concept of Victoria's Secret, an America's largest retail company for women's lingerie.
When Richa discussed her business idea with the parents, she didn't gain any support from them. Like any typical Indian parents, they were embarrassed by the very thought of their daughter selling lingeries online. Gaining no support from the family, the determined Richa started researching over the offline lingerie shopping to learn the pros and cons of it. In 2011, she launched the brand Zivame, which means 'radiance me' in Hebrew. Richa had invested all her saving in this startup and had also borrowed Rs.35 lakhs from her friends. Like any successful entrepreneurs, Richa also went through a lot of criticism in her initial days. But, as famously said, when one is determined to taste success nothing could stop them. Today the brand's net worth is approximated to Rs. 749 crore.
Hailing from a middle-class family from Haryana with no business background, Suchi choose to achieve big rather than settling down with what she had. The economic graduate went on to pursue a master's degree in economics and finance from the London School of Economics UK. Post her education, she served in an authoritative position. This role helped her develop quick analytical decision-making skills which in turn ignited the entrepreneurial idea within her.
Suchi gave life to her entrepreneurial idea with two key points. One- to provide the safest online shopping platform by giving a detailed manufacturer description and the second is to provide an easy and engaging shopping experience to women and aid them in finding their local products and accessories. Thus, Limeroad was founded in October 2012. Within just three years the company was recognized as the Coolest startup of the year by Business Today and went to earn many such honorable awards. In 2016, Limeroad obtained the Unicorn startup award. Today, the brand's website has more than 50 million visitors and the company is estimated to be $22.5 million.
When we prefer to shop something quirky and colorful, Chumbak is the spot to visit. This brand has gained wider popularity among consumers especially the college girls, who are the major part of shopping spree. Shubhra is a travel and tourism graduate, she is married to Vivek Prabhakar, CEO, and Co-Founder of Chumbak.
The couple has sold their flat to launch this brand. But, then they were not aware that this business which took away their flat would give them much more than the flat in return. Initially, Chumbak offered attractive refrigerator magnets and slowly expand to provide a trendy collection of wallets, footwear, handbags, keychains, and other novelty products. The brand's net worth is approximated to $44-67 million.
Being born in Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh, Sairee choose to leave her home at the young age of 17. Post which she enrolled in Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) to train herself in the Russian language. She then went on to work as a senior editor at NewsLink Service and a Consultant at the Confederation of Indian Industry.
In 2013, Sairee established Sheroes.in, a mobile social network for women. This platform has more than 15 million women members, it provides a safe platform to find business, connections, counseling, and community.
Menstruation is still a tabooed topic in many regions across India. But, this taboo topic is a crucial part of women's health that many of us fail to understand. The embarrassment of menstruation has forced many women to ignore their personal hygiene leading to various health issues such as cervical cancer and many more. Aditi herself undergone such turmoil decided to contribute by creating awareness mensus through 'Menstrupedia'.
Aditi along with her husband and brother began her journey in enlightening the nation through her blog Menstrupedia. This blog facilitates a crowd-sourced platform. They have a community of over 3000+ writers to assist in the Q&A sessions. In 2017, the blog's comics were translated in 14 languages to reach out to every nook and corner of the country.