MUMBAI, India: Aimed at supporting India’s growing startup ecosystem, Ritesh Agarwal will step in as an advisor and work closely with the country’s largest incubator, Venture Catalysts, to promote entrepreneurship across tier 1, 2 and 3 cities. India is a growing startup ecosystem and needs experienced people to come forward to collectively grow the ecosystem and make the country ‘atmanirbharbharat’ (self reliant India). Ritesh is taking a step forward to give back to the country and his fellow entrepreneurs along with Dr. Apoorv Sharma, one of the first people to back Ritesh's vision in 2012 when he started Oravel Stays and established OYO in 2013.
Having started his journey as an entrepreneur at a young age, Riteshrealises the importance of mentorship and guidance. He fondly remembers how people across the startup ecosystem have played important and strategic roles in enabling OYO’s sustained growth and expansion. While it is imperative for founders to have the right vision, focus, perseverance and patience, the role of people like Dr. Apoorv, who supported, mentored and guided him, is critical and key to success.
Ritesh Agarwal commented, ”I started OYO at an age and time when the ecosystem was still developing and was fortunate to get mentors like Dr. Apoorv, BejulSomaia, and others, who guided and supported me in my startup journey. As I move forward in my journey as an entrepreneur, I believe it is time for me to give back to the society and support other young entrepreneurs.”
”Through this collaboration with VCats, I intend to enable the young entrepreneurs coming from the smaller towns of India, who do not get similar opportunities that their peers in bigger cities or metros get. I am confident that we will be able to discover the next big idea from a tier 3 or 4 town,” added Ritesh, one of the first resident Asians to be accepted for the ”20 under 20” Thiel Fellowship at the age of 19.
“We are thrilled to be collaborating with Ritesh. His insights will prove valuable as we continue to execute our plan to build a robust infrastructure for startups across India. Being one of his early supporters, I am really happy to see his commitment to continue supporting students and young founders in India. His learnings will help many entrepreneurs that have the potential to become the next Unicorn but have very limited access to the right support and mentorship,” commented Dr. ApoorvRanjan Sharma, founder of Venture Catalysts.
Venture Catalysts (VCats), which is ranked world’s seventh most active early stage investor and integrated incubator according to CrunchBase of TechCrunch, is known for developing and nurturing early-stage startups such as Beardo, BharatPe, Fynd, Supr and Coutloot, among others, in various sectors ranging from FMCG to FinTech. The Mumbai-based incubator has a deep presence in over 30 smaller Indian towns such as Jaipur, Raipur, Bhubaneswar, Vizag, Rajkot, and Ahmedabad, amongst others.