Top 10 Indian Role Models in the Startup Domain


When we called in for nominations for your favourite startup, we also asked for your role models from the Indian startup industry and the people have voiced their opinion (here are the top 10 startups you chose). These people serve as the beacons for the aspiring entrepreneurs. They motivate and inspire the people who dream of entrepreneurship. They're the role models for the people in the Indian Startup Ecosystem. Here are the top 10 role models you picked:

Alok Kejriwal

Alok Kejriwal is CEO and Co-Founder of Apart from being a serial entrepreneur and an investor, Alok is also a very active individual in the Indian startup ecosystem. Recently at the NASSCOM Conclave in Bangalore he shared with us witty insights on Investing, Mentoring, Gaming, Shitty Jobs and Climbing The Mount Everest!

Deep Kalra

Deep Kalra is the Founder & CEO of MakeMyTrip, India’s leading online travel portal. An IIM-A alumnus, Deep launched MakeMyTrip in 2000 and has traversed the extremes of the Indian online space. Deep has strongly accentuated on the fact that entrepreneurs should not start-up focusing on exits.

Dorai Thodla

Dorai Thodla is a founder of iMorph, Inc. iMorph builds tools and provides services for gathering technology intelligence, market intelligence and industry intelligence. He has been an active mentor and guides many startups in getting their act right.

Kishore Biyani

Kishore Biyani is the CEO of Future Group, and the MD of Pantaloon Retail. Biyani's Future Group has over 17 million square feet of retail space in 90 cities and 60 rural locations. He managed to raise $170 million by taking venture capital arm Future Ventures public in March 2011. Kishore is also the co-author of the book "It happened in India". It is the story of Pantaloons, Big Bazaar, Central and the Great Indian Consumer, co-authored with Dipayan Baishya. Surely a role model for many across India!

Mahesh Murthy

Mahesh Murthy is a founding partner at Seedfund, and has over 26 years of marketing and communications experience, of which 15 years are in online marketing. After dropping out of college, Mahesh sold vacuum cleaners from door to door, worked with Grey in India and Ogilvy in Hong Kong, where he won notoriety and awards as a creative director on HP, The Economist, Pepsi and MTV – for whom he wrote and directed a spot voted “Asia’s best commercial of the decade”. Watch this candid video from a him: "talk on fund raising for start-ups"

Naveen Tewari

Naveen Tewari is the Founder of InMobi, the world’s largest independent mobile advertising network. This is no small feat and Naveen feels that a lot depends on the entrepreneur's mindset. One of the most successful entrepreneurs of the new age, Naveen has inspired many to dream big and achieve things entrepreneurs usually thought to be out of their reach.

Phanindra Sama

Phanindra Sama is the Founder & CEO of, the leading online bus ticketing portal. Phanindra Sama is be better known as “Phani” in the startups space and has been able to build a vastly successful company. It is under his leadership that redBus achieved the feat of selling 10 million bus tickets. A very humble individual, catch Phani in this video where he shared his thoughts with us.

Sachin and Binny Bansal

The Bansals are the poster boys of the Indian startup ecosystem, with their ecommerce firm Flipkart pegged to be the Amazon of India. Although mired in a few controversies off late, Flipkart remains the biggest eCommerce venture in India. YourStory visited the Flipkart's Bangalore office during the firm's early days and caught up with this duo then. From then till today, their growth has been phenomenal coupled with multiple rounds of funding which has kept them head and shoulders above the rest. No surprise that the Bansal brothers are the role models for many.

Sanjeev Bikhchandani

Sanjeev Bikhchandani, an IIM-A alumnus, is the Founder of, India’s leading online job portal. An early catcher of the Internet market in India, Sanjeev sees high potential in the consumer internet and mobile. Another widely respected entrepreneur who has built a company with sheer grit and determination.

Subroto Bagchi

Subroto Bagchi is an Indian entrepreneur and co-founder of MindTree Inc., an international IT consulting company. He is the author of the books, Go Kiss The World: Life Lessons for the You. Subroto's words have proved to be the golden advice for many. So when he says that building a great company is seldom an accident, you ought to believe him.


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