Five power women driving India's startup investment ecosystem
It takes determination and gumption to start one’s own business. In an age where we have seen more women enter the world of entrepreneurship, we have also watched them struggle to sustain against the constant societal pressures. Thus on the face of facts concerning women in the startup scenario of the country, the numbers might look bleak in comparison to men. In spite of this, there is no dearth of examples of successful female leaders across different sectors. In fact, women are steadily becoming the major factors behind the new dawn of the startup ecosystem of the country.
Let’s take a look at some of the feistiest women, who are giving wings to their business dreams and nurturing others’ as well:
She is the founder and Managing Director of Kalaari Capital and was listed as one of the most powerful women in Indian Business by Fortune India. Her commitment to the development of entrepreneurs defines her role at the company. After working for 22 years as a founder of successful companies in the Silicon Valley, she has emerged as an influential business figure in India. With the belief that Indian companies are on their way to becoming global players, she serves on several company boards and mentors startups in the country.
A Delhi-based entrepreneurial lawyer, mentor and startup enthusiast, Roma is an International Business Laws and Corporate Laws degree holder at Symbiosis International University. She launched her own venture, Burgeon Law intending to provide entrepreneurs price- sensitive and quality legal advisory. She has played a key role in driving over 500 new-age companies to operate with ease and achieve their business objectives. These range across different sectors including fintech, healthcare, data intelligence, logistics, education, e-commerce, travel, FMCG, food and beverage, hospitality, media, etc. Some of these are INDwealth, AngelList, VH Capital, Bulbul, GrowX, Innerchef, Money 91, Akiva, GSF Accelerator, Mamaearth, BiryaniByKilo, Suman Munjal Family Office, Niki.ai. Under Roma’s assertive leadership, the firm has closed more than 350+ deals since inception and has successfully represented leading Indian and international clients from multiple jurisdictions such as Singapore, USA, the UK, Mauritius, China, and Japan. Her contributions to the Indian startup ecosystem have won her The Build India Award for excellence in the field of investment.
She is the co-founder and president of Indian Angel Network (IAN), one of India's largest angel funds. She is powering the platform’s vision of funding at least 500 startups to create over 30,000 jobs in the next decade. Padmaja has done it all from building her own real estate business to handling corporate communications and corporate social responsibility before becoming an angel investor. Today, she is also a part of multiple councils and boards like the Governing Council of EM3 Services, National Expert Advisory Committee on Innovation, Incubation and Technology Entrepreneurship and Committee of Telecom Centre of Excellence, Selection Committee of MSME.
Navita Yadav is the Global Head of Capital Markets for Vistra and the Country Managing Director for Vistra India. She is responsible for developing and executing Vistra’s capital markets strategy globally. Navita is also the Chairperson of ‘ASSOCHAM - National Council for Bond Markets in India and President and founder of Trustees Association of India (TAI). For her extensive work in the last two decades in driving profitability of Capital Markets, she has been listed among India’s Top 100 Women in Finance.
A graduate in Mathematics and Economics from St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai, Ankiti went on to become the first Indian woman to head a unicorn. She co-founded Zilingo, a commerce platform, which is assisting businesses across the fashion value chain in procurement, data analysis, financial services etc.Prior to this, she worked in venture capital and management consulting at Sequoia Capital and McKinsey & Company for three years. Leveraging her experience in consumer internet and e-commerce opportunities on mobile platforms, she is leading Zilingo to scale global heights.
These women are striving to uplift India from 52nd position in a list of 57 countries on the number of women entrepreneurs in the respective country. They are not only creating a more enabling environment in the startup ecosystem for others, but also inspiring thousands to follow the suit.