- Portea brings world-class healthcare to every home
- Nykaa gets international cosmetic brands to India
- Embibe takes learning to a new level with integrated tech
- Limeroad transforms women’s fashion retail online
Be it e-commerce, education, retail, finance, medicine or beauty, women entrepreneurs have made an inimitable mark in every sphere. As more and more women pursue their business goals, you have strong and successful businesswomen to look up to as role models. Here is a roundup of 4 such women who are making great strides in their chosen field.
Portea Co-Founder and CEO Meena Ganesh
The brainchild of Meena Ganesh and her husband, Portea provides doctors, nurses, and physiotherapists to take care of your medical needs at home. This unique platform offers a full range of healthcare services to patients which includes geriatric, chronic, and post-operative care too. With over 3 decades of experience across consulting, technology, outsourcing, education, e-commerce and healthcare industries including and having worked in companies like Microsoft India and Tesco, Meena Ganesh finally gave shape to her own venture with Portea in July 2013. As the CEO of Portea Medical, India’s largest and fastest growing home healthcare company, she spearheads the vision of providing affordable healthcare to everyone through the convenience of door-to-door service. Portea today has more than 1,000 employees and has a presence in 18+ cities across India.
Meena dreams of expanding the company to 50 cities over the next 2 years. This goal seems achievable given the fact that Portea has been receiving handsome funding in the past few years. In 2015 Portea raised $37.5 million funding from Accel Partners. In November last year, the company raised $26 million funding from a fresh set of investors, Sabre Partners and MEMG CDC. Meena was conferred the ‘Distinguished Alumnus’ award by IIM Calcutta in 2011. In the same year, she also qualified as one of the 5 finalists for the Forbes Leadership Award.
Nykaa Founder and CEO Falguni Nayaar
It has just been 3 years since Nykaa was born, but in this short span of time, this beauty platform has emerged as India’s largest beauty destination serving more than half a million customers. Falguni Nayar, a former investment banker, founded Nykaa to transform the market for beauty and personal care in India. She single-handedly acquired leading international cosmetics brands and brought them to India through her beauty e-comm portal. Today, Nykaa has a product strength that crosses the 1 lakh mark and includes offerings across categories ranging from makeup, skincare, hair care, fragrances, bath and body, luxury and wellness.
Based on its performance and growth, the company received an initial $3.4 million in funding, and then $12 million in 2016. Falguni has received many honours throughout her career, including the FICCI Ladies Organization award that recognises her achievement in the field of banking. She is also a part of advisory boards in companies like Dabur India, Aviva Insurance Board, and Tata Motors. Falguni plans to expand the horizons for Nykaa and hopes to have more than 30 brick and mortar stores for Nykaa by 2020.
Embibe Founder and CEO Aditi Avasthi
Embibe, India’s leading education tech company, is the outcome of its founder Aditi Avasthi’s failed attempt to crack the IIT JEE entrance exam. After a successful career in corporate development and sales for brands like Barclays Africa and TCS, Aditi began her entrepreneurial stint by raising $700,000 from her family and friends for an education platform that she felt could change the way Indian students learnt. Embibe thus focuses on improving learning by using personalised data analytics for students with different skills and abilities. By designing customised learning modules for each student, it helps them prepare for competitive exams in a more effective way.
After a successful start in 2012, Aditi raised $4 million from Kalaari Capital and venture fund Lightbox in 2013 to fuel Embibe’s growth. This educational start-up has already acquired 100Marks, a student guidance platform for Advanced and Medical JEE Main. Aditi has not only received the honour of being featured in the ‘Fortune 40 Under 40 list’, but has also received the Woman Entrepreneur of the Year award by the Indian Education Congress. She has also been invited as a speaker by forums like TEDx and Y-Combinator India on ed-tech as a beacon of change. Last year Aditi also found a place in BBC’s 100 Women series.
Limeroad Founder and CEO Suchi Mukherjee
Incepted in 2012 by Suchi Mukherjee, Limeroad is a fashion portal offering the latest range of products and accessories from leading brands. The brand calls itself a fashion discovery portal and allows you to choose from a host of offerings based on moods, style and trends. Limeroad has a vast product listing of over 200,000 products on its platform. The company has captured the interest of millennials, and has raised a funding amounting to $50 million jointly from Lightspeed venture partners, Matrix partners and Tiger Global from 2014 to 2016. The sales figures posted by the company show a tremendous growth of 173% amounting to Rs.42.6 crore during the fiscal year 2015-16.
Suchi started Limeroad after some noteworthy business experience, taking care of set-up and expansion for consumer technology brands like eBay and Skype. She was listed among the 15 women for the Rising Talent – Global Leaders Under 40 at the World Women’s Forum in Paris in 2010 for her unwavering contributions towards business growth and expansion in varied markets. She has also been conferred with awards such as NDTV Unicorn Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2016 and INFOCOM Woman of the Year – Digital Business in 2015.
Bringing diverse business experience and personal stories of grit and determination, Indian women entrepreneurs are changing the Indian business landscape. Hopefully, we will see more women joining the bandwagon of entrepreneurship, thanks to the business-friendly opportunities and women empowering policies like tailor-made business loans for women. With the required skills and resources, we can expect a longer list of women achievers in the coming time.
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