Top 10 Women Entrepreneurs In India8 minute
"There is no limit to what we, as women, can accomplish."
Entrepreneurship has always been considered as a man’s job, but long gone is that era where women were only restricted to play the role of a home-maker and rear children. Today’s women have not only broken these stereotypes but have also taken a step into the men’s world, who are doing an excellent job for themselves and are reaching greater heights. Here are 10 successful and rising women entrepreneurs in India who have accomplished to make their start-ups as successful companies:
Shopping can get very tiring, and especially shopping for make-up. We girls are so particular about the exact lipstick shade, the nail polish colours, the make-up brands that we want and sometimes we end up not finding it in the stores we go, your go to solution is Nykaa. Nykaa is an online beauty platform for all the women out there, Falguni Nayar is the Founder and CEO of the company. Falguni is an IIM Graduate and has 25 years of work experience in the financing arena for different companies. She started NYKAA in the year 2012 and within no time the e-commerce beauty app had become very popular and created a lot of hype amongst the women, the brand already had partnership with famous brands like L’oreal, Uniliver, P&G etc. Today, the brand has made a name for itself such that it is preferred by most girls, women and now even has a men’s store. The app has made shopping much easier for women and now all the products are just a click away. Nykaa has become offline as well, for those people who prefer buying it in stores.
Zivame is an online lingerie store which caters to the variety of lingerie options open to women. Richa Kar is the founder and CEO of Zivame and it was launched in the year 2011. We all are hesitant to buy lingerie in stores because of judgy looks given to us by the salesperson and sometimes we aren’t able to convey what exactly we need, which is where Zivame comes into the picture. The main idea was to save women from the embarrassment and unwanted attention from the opposite sex. Zivame has made lingerie shopping so much easier, with the un-numerable varieties that they have to offer in the products as well as in different sizes. Zivame is one of a unique company in its domain and manages to dominate lingerie shopping than any other company. Today, Zivame offers more than 5,000 styles, 50 brands, and 100 sizes. So, the next time lingerie shopping? Just Zivame!
Most of us here love travelling, and anyone who loves travelling will be very familiar with Yatra.com. Yatra was co-founded by Sabina Chopra and two other members- Dhruv Shingri and Manish Amin in 2006. Yatra is an online travel agency and search engine which provides travelling services to people.Yatra.com offers a variety of packages with all charges covered and has a user-friendly interface. Sabina being the co-founder of the company has quite some experience in the travel domain, before Yatra.com Sabina had worked in companies like, eBookers which is Europe’s leading travel company and has also worked in the BPO sector in Japan Airlines. Sabina knew quite a lot about the protocols and how the online travel companies’ function, which is why Yatra.com was introduced in India because the online service for travelling still hadn’t developed by then. Sabina was honoured in the second annual Women Leaders in India Awards, 2010 and was declared the winner in the Travel & Tourism group. Today, Yatra is one of the leading travel companies in India and has many loyal customers.
We all travel and meet new people at new places and tend to buy something from there as a souvenir back home. Indian souvenirs had become boring with the usual monuments and handicrafts and that is when Chumbak was born. Chumbak was founded by Shubra Chadda and Vivek Prabhakar, because they wanted to bring in a modern and quirky touch to the India souvenirs. Chumbak was started as a souvenir store but now has become a whole new brand and a successful company owing it to its products. The main objective of Chumbak was to bring out another side or meaning to India’s craft and products, the funky and eye-catching crafts have made chumbak what it is today, Chumbak has become a very popular brand especially amongst the young Indians and can be seen in almost all the shopping malls across India. Today this quirky brand has over 120 retail stores all across the country and Shubra Chadda is one of the most innovative women entrepreneurs in India. The next time you something funky and cool, you know where it is from.
We all are a big fan when it comes to food and FreshMenu has managed to become a household name today. Rashmi Daga is the Founder and CEO of FreshMenu and it was started in the year 2014. She is an IIM Graduate in MBA, and has worked in companies like IBM India, Johnson and Johnson, Ola and BlueStone. Today, we all have a variety of restaurant apps delivering food to our houses but a few years back the number of restaurants delivering food were very limited which is when Rashmi thought about coming up something new and FreshMenu happened. FreshMenu is an online kitchen serving people cuisines from around the world. It was first started in Bangalore and then went on to Delhi and Mumbai. FreshMenu has many satellite kitchens every 5 kilometres within the city to cater to the cravings of people. FreshMenu was first started as an independent delivering app but today we can also see it on other delivering app platforms like Zomato and Swiggy. The company approximately makes an annual revenue of $17.6 million dollars.
Suchi Mukherjee is the Founder and CEO of LimeRoad.com. Suchi is a master graduate in Economics and Finance from the London School of Economics. Suchi has worked for Lehman Brothers Inc and Virgin Media on the front. She wanted to create something of her own which would create an impact on the society and this is when the idea of creating a platform dominantly for women struck her and she came up with LimeRoad. LimeRoad is a platform used by women to share and buy clothes and accessories, they keep up with the latest fashion and trends, share their personal experiences and most importantly buy clothes. The main aim of Suchi was to create a platform for selling products at an affordable price. LimeRoad is unique in its own way and is loved by most women across the country.
- Shop Clues:
Radhika Ghai Aggarwal
Radhika Aggarwal is the co-founder of shop clues which is also known as the “India’s Online Bazaar”. Radhika Aggarwal has been the most successful women entrepreneur in the recent years and she also refers to herself as an “accidental entrepreneur”. She believes in “making her today better than her yesterday, by taking small steps towards it”. She started her career with Fashion Clues and then became a co-founder of Shop Clues, having an experience of 16 years in various industries like E-commerce, Advertising, Lifestyle, PR and Fashion. Radhika is a great entrepreneur who also believes in women empowerment, she urges women to fight for their rights and demand an equal pay as well. She recently joined the Unicorn Club. Shop Clues has recently launched an AD Zone, which helps sellers in getting visibility and as a platform for business amongst them. She believes that “Hard work is an outcome of passion. If you’re passionate, you will work towards achieving results and success will follow.”
Upasana Taku co-founded Mobikwik with her husband Bipin Preet Singh. Upasana holds a MS in Management and Science Engineering from Stanford University, US. She started her job in HSBC and then later on shifted to PayPal and learnt more about payment gateway. Upasana wanted to go back to India and do something there, hence she shifted back in 2009 and was on the lookout to start a business in India. At that time, India didn’t have a cashless society and all the payments were carried out in the form of cash, this idea initiated in the forming of Mobikwik. Mobikwik is payment gateway app which first started off as a recharge platform and then took shape into a mobile wallet. The concept of mobile wallet was new to the country and mobikwik was the first of its kind. Today mobikwik is used by millions of people to use, collect and transfer money. She has always believed in one thing, that is ‘Kick up a storm or die trying’
- Social Samosa:
Ankita Gaba is a social media strategist, consultant, lecturer and most importantly a successful entrepreneur. She worked as a social media strategist and also a co-founder in SuperChooha. They collaborated with famous companies and brands like Idea Cellular, Ponds, Mahindra, Colors and Zapak. She is currently the co-founder of Social Samosa. Social Samosa is basically an inventory that consists of thoughts, ideas, case studies and the social media functionalities. Today, Social media has no limits and is reaching greater heights with the passing days, The main aim of Social Samosa is to have things that are usually put up or scattered on various social parts of social media to be combined and put into one platform that is free and easily accessible to all. Ankita Gaba has been listed in the Global Top 100 Social Media Agencies and Consultants 2012-13, and also in 50 Indian Women to Follow on Twitter.
Menstrupedia was founded by Aditi Gupta and her husband Tuhin patel. Aditi hails from a small town in Jharkhand namely Gharwa. Aditi created a Hindi comic book with her husband, illustrating and educating girls about menstruation. Menstruation is still considered as a taboo in many parts of Rural India where girls are asked to follow certain restrictions when they are on their period like no entry to the kitchen, the temple or even the house; where they aren’t allowed to cook, or even come in contact with men, and have no clue as to why they are being shut-out by their own family. This behaviour had a direct impact on the girl’s mind and health. Aditi Gupta was also born in a conservative middle-class family, and even she was subject to all this. The unawareness of menstruation and the taboos surrounding it in Rural areas is the main reason behind the creation of Menstrupedia.com. The main objective behind this was to educate girls about the process of menstruation, the importance of menstrual hygiene and tips to remain healthy during menstruation. Aditi has taken a huge step forward with menstrupedia and has even managed to bring in changes not only in India but throughout the world.
FOITO- Transforming lives with the right career path3 minute
I recently came across a book called ‘Ikigai’- The Japanese secret of a long and happy life. And the secret to a long and happy life is to find a career which gives you a purpose to wake up to every day.
As a child, whenever I was asked “what do you want to become”? the answers changed every 6 months. So I had a plethora of choices starting from a doctor, to astronaut, a comedian, a robotics expert, and whatnot.
But then little did I realize that what we dream of and what we end up doing can be stark opposites. As we step into higher education we get into peer pressure or family pressure and eventually choose a career which is “Trending in India” and finally fall into a spiral of gloom and despair when we realize halfway through that we do not like our career path.
Owing to the immense competition, we are very still stuck in a maze where it is almost difficult to get to know ourselves. But it is important to note that embarking on a path to the right career without a thorough analysis of your own self is a horrible mistake and, as a consequence, all of us may eventually be left in a state of absolute misery!
Therefore, before planning out our future job opportunities, our main focus would be to better understand ourselves. It means developing our latent talents, finding things that really attract us, searching for experiences that give us an adrenaline rush, recognizing work that doesn't make us feel drained and helps us to reach our highest potential.
This seems quite daunting for us being in a country where only rhetoric learning is given utmost importance and there is less scope for developing skills that match our passion.
Still, wondering how to go about it?
This is where FOITO comes to the rescue.
FOITO was incorporated in November 2018. They have covered a journey of 1.5 years and have already completed more than 30 + training projects and over 80 skills assessments. Having a network of 20 + trainers across India, they have been able to deliver effectively to all their clients
A brief introduction about the founders:
Mr. Shabar Syed (Co-Founder)
Enthusiast, ambitious and imaginative, his diverse professional experience, his passion for teaching and his versatility in strategic analysis help him deliver enriching interaction-based learning sessions.
Manohar Reddy (Co-Founder)
Humble, technically strong, he knows the best way to manage the most complicated situations. His unique actions and imaginative concepts, together with his first-hand experience of working for a leading retail store, helps him add practical scenarios to the workshops.
Swagata Ganguly (Co-Director)
Bcom Hons graduated from Delhi University, now pursuing an MBA at IIM Lucknow, was part of FOITO 's journey as an intern and is now looking to manage the venture forward as a director.
The USPs of FOITO are as follows:
Their Skill Evaluation Module is an emotional intelligence-based skill evaluation that seeks to help people determine their best career choices based on three-point requirements. They also recommend the necessary preparation programs on the basis of the qualifications needed for the career paths thereby obtained.
The best part is whether we are at the beginning of our career or in mid-level jobs they can help us steer in the right direction based on our educational qualifications. Or if we want to venture into entrepreneurship they give all the necessary training by Industry Experts customized according to our needs.
So, FOITO provides a fascinating opportunity for those who want to explore their latent talents and are able to find some promising career opportunities where they'll be successful. Join our Webinar to find all the answers to your career questions
As the saying goes “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life." —Confucius
21 Must-Know Laws for Indian Women6 minute
Women in our nation have reached great heights of success, yet most of them are still not aware of the most common laws for Indian women laid down by our government.This article attempts to help educate about the laws for Indian women.
“Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” ― Martin Luther King Jr.
Women in our nation have reached great heights of success, yet most of them are still not aware of the most common laws for Indian women laid down by our government. Whenever a wrong is done, often we let the matter slide because we don’t want to deal with police and courts. If each one of us knows our rights, instead of being terrified, we could actually fight the wrong. This article attempts to help educate about the laws for Indian women. The term Police itself is so misunderstood by us. POLICE stands for Public Officer for Legal Investigations and Criminal Emergencies.
Ever partied too loud or too late for the police to come and intervene? Or have been in a situation where the traffic police have threatened to take you to the police station? Well, they can’t!
- When women interact with a Police Officer- Women cannot be arrested after sunset and before sunrise. If arrested, they have to be presented before a Magistrate within 24 hours and should be kept in a prison separate from the male prisoners. The arrest and search of your body can be made only by a female officer.
- If any form of questioning is required with the Police: If the police officer wants to do any investigation or question you further about any complaint you may have filed, he needs to come to your home and do such questioning at your residence. The police officer cannot call you alone to the police station or any other place of his choice.
- When Woman endures sexual harassment or a sexual assault at the workplace: Each one of us has had that sneaky boss of ours eyeing us in a manner that made us uncomfortable. Or in an interview, a sexual favor was demanded in exchange for the job. Whether verbal or non-verbal, such action is not acceptable. All such complaints are to be filed within three months of the occurrence with the Internal Committee at your workplace. If there is no Internal Committee, you can file all such complaints with the Local Committee in the town where you work or reside.
- Women have a right to Equal Pay: There should be equal pay for men and women for the same work done by them in the same position. For example, Two team leads with equal experience, should receive the same salary irrespective of their gender. No gender discrimination can be made even during the hiring process. This has also been guaranteed under the Indian Constitution.
- When a woman works night shifts- There should be proper security measures taken by your employer if your job demands night shifts. This includes your travel to and from work. No woman should be made to work alone in a night shift and has to be necessarily placed in a group.
- Woman’s right to say No and Sexual Assault: When you are touched sexually without consent, or forced or coerced to establish any form of physical relationship, it is sexual assault. If any form of threat is made to you to get the consent, it is not consent. Stalking, eve-teasing, Voyeurism, acid attack, outraging a woman’s modesty, showing pornography etc. are all considered to be sexual assault and sexual violence.
- Woman’s Right to Privacy: The identity of a sexual assault victim is to be kept confidential under all circumstances. Your statement may be recorded by before a Magistrate without being overheard by anyone else. Even in the judgment, the judge refers to you as the ‘victim’. All the Bollywood movies where cross-examination is done in open court, it is only entertainment purposes. The reality is very different.
- Medical Examination in the event of rape and sexual assault: A medical test to establish rape should be conducted within the first 72 hours of the incident. It is to be performed by a female doctor. The test establishes any sexual activity performed on the woman and helps to detect the rapist if any semen sample is found in the victim’s body. Rape is a crime and not a medical condition.
- FIR in case of Sexual Assault: There is no time limit to report rape or sexual assault. A case may be filed in any police station that the victim wants to, in the presence of a female constable. This is known as the Zero FIR. Section 375 and 376 of the IPC deal with rape. In certain cities like Delhi, a woman may report a sexual assault online or through a registered post letter to a senior police officer.
- Woman’s Right to Free Legal Aid: When reporting a sexual assault, if you do not have a lawyer present, you may ask for legal aid and the police officer has to provide you with it.
- Right of Abortion: Abortion is the right of a woman. Hence, no parental or husband’s consent is required to abort. Under normal conditions, until the 20th week, the woman can abort and if there is any risk to the life of a mother, abortion can be done until the 24th week.
- But without the woman’s consent, abortion is illegal and a punishable offense. During pregnancy, under no circumstances can any test be performed to find out the gender of the baby. This is a crime.
- Right against cyber crimes: With the advent of technology, it has become much easier for criminals to hide behind their digital screens and harass women. Cyber Stalking, Identity theft, Online Defamation, Morphing pictures, pornography, etc. are all crime.
- Cybercrime complaints may be filed online at https://www.cybercrime.gov.in/ or in your nearest police station. You may file a complaint anonymously as well.
- Rights of a married woman: The Supreme Court in India has said that every married woman should be treated with dignity and respect. You are entitled to live in the same house as your husband and to be maintained by him. Any act of bigamy on the part of your husband is a punishable offense.
- Woman’s right Against Domestic Violence: If your husband or any other man in your house hits you, you can file a Domestic violence case. This may be filed with or without simultaneously asking for Divorce.
- Right to Property and Streedhan: All the gifts received by you before and after marriage ceremonies or during childbirth, is your personal property and no one can take it away from you, not even your husband. You have an equal right in your father’s property as well. Similarly, you also have a right in your husband’s property after his death.
- Woman’s right to give divorce: Divorce is always a second chance at happiness and everyone deserves to stay happy. If any cruelty is being meted out to you, you can ask for a divorce. Adultery, Bigamy, religious conversion, insanity, missing for over 7years, or non- consummate the marriage, are divorce grounds.
- If your husband has committed rape, bestiality or sodomy; on any other person, it may be a ground for divorce provided you can prove it. Marital rape is considered in India only when the age of the wife is less than 18yrs.
- Note: It may be noted that the marital laws in our nation differ with respect to the caste and faith of a person.
- Right to Maintenance and Alimony: In the event of judicial separation or divorce, a woman is entitled to maintenance from her husband for herself and her children, as long as she does not remarry. The amount depends on your lifestyle under Section 125 of CRPC and decided by a judge. Alimony is a one-time payment of maintenance.
- Right to Child’s custody: Ideally for a child below the age of 5yrs, the mother is the natural guardian and the child should remain in the mother’s custody. A female minor child is usually placed in the mother’s custody always.
- A right to Maternity benefits: Becoming a mother is one of the best feelings in the world and it should not stand in the way of your success and career graph. Every expecting, adopting or surrogate mother has the right to maternity benefits. It may be claimed for up to 26weeks and post this, if the nature of the job permits, you can opt for work from home. During the period of maternity leave, you cannot be fired or demoted. Even if the mother dies during childbirth, your heir is entitled to the payment of any maternity benefit that is due. Even at instances of miscarriage, it is supposed to be paid. Some common queries were answered by the Ministry of Labour & Employment which may also be helpful- Maternity Benefit Laws
- Woman’s right to Live-in relationship: Any sound woman above the age of 18yrs has the right to choose her partner whether to get married or be in a live-in relationship with. Live-in relationships are legally recognized by the law. And children of such couples also have legal rights against the father.
- Right against Dowry: Both giving and receiving dowry, whether in the name of gifts or anything else is strictly prohibited. If you are being tortured by your in-laws in the name of dowry, you may seek divorce and legally imprison your husband and his family.
National Commission For Women
The NCW is a government body in India that aims to voice the rights of women in our country. It has advocated and fought against archaic laws. It strives to ensure the safety of women, both inside and outside their houses.
If anyone of you have any further questions regarding your rights, you may click the link below to seek help for all such matters: http://www.ncw.nic.in/helplines
The website also provides the space to ask your questions online as well. http://ncw.nic.in/
The National Women Helpline number is 181.
My Personal Experience:
Being a lawyer, I have encountered many women who wanted to file for divorce or get an abortion or wanted to file a complaint in general for any atrocity meted out to them. But more often than not, they would not go through with it despite living horrendous lives. Their biggest fears involved only one question- What will the people think? Log kya kahengey! And how would they support themselves and their children after the incident? But all these fears are unnecessary as there are enough laws in our nation to protect the interest of women.
India, the land of Durga, Kali and Saraswati, ironically is famous for being one of the most aggressively dominant patriarchal societies in the world. But since Independence, one step at a time, an attempt is made to bring change. The laws though abundant lacks awareness.
Women have traveled a long way from being uneducated and married at the age of 10yrs to now becoming the CEO’s of some of the most prestigious companies worldwide. Battles are being fought day in and day out in against patriarchy but most battles are yet to be won.
Once the rights are identified, it shall become increasingly easy to get these rights implemented. One step at a time and we shall be in an equal state with the men in our society if not superior. This is where feminism begins. This article hopes to be a step in the direction of achieving that.