The world champion and India’s badminton ace, Jwala Gutta is not just India’s most successful doubles specialist, but also an emerging entrepreneur. In about 30 days from now, the ace shuttler of India, Jwala is going to dawn her entrepreneurial journey after her successful stint in Badminton sport.
To prepare and raise more valuables for Olympics from India, was a long awaited dream of Jwala, which now seemingly is taking a shape. In a partnership with Knock Out Wellness Labs Ltd., which is a sister concern of Franchise India, Jwala is setting up a badminton academy to nurture India’s sports talent.
Entrepreneur India caught up with Jwala in a candid conversation at Hyderabad International Convention Centre, where we asked her about her vision for the academy that she is going to launch next month.
"Profit-making is not what my vision is, for this venture"
On asking the ace shuttler of India how she jumped into the bandwagon of entrepreneurship, Jwala explained, “we are one-billion population and I want to raise at least 10 medals to come in world championship. We have a lot of talent; all we need to do is just tap onto that segment and give them a nurturing. That’s what I am going to do in my venture.”
On talking about her vision, she said, "My aim is to not to make profit, but Olympic Champions, and that would be our real profit.”
“I know what a player needs and what I did not get at my early age”
Asking about her role of being more than a mentor in her entrepreneurial journey, Jwala told us, “I am not sure if I can be a good coach or not, but I can be a good mentor because I know what I did not get at my early age, and I intend to help other aspiring players with those things to take their stress off.”
In her career span of 17 years as an active sportsperson, Jwala explained Entrepreneur that since she had gone through a lot of ups and downs to attain her ultimate goal, she completely understands what lacks in the training and development of an aspiring player’s life. Therefore, she aims to help young talents to break the glass-ceiling.
“I know how difficult it is for a woman player to focus on badminton amid social pressures and education,” adds Jwala.
“Education is important for a sportsperson”
With a strong belief that a good sportsperson should be an educative one, Jwala put across her views on education by saying, “Education is not just about degree, but it also helps a players or an athlete build a capacity to understand things what is happening around there.”
“I also want to look at somehow providing education to the players who will be training.”
“Believe in yourself, be gritty, be bold!
In her three tips to aspiring women sportspersons, Jwala said, “Just believe in you. We women tend to doubt ourselves. We have to impress a lot of people. We don’t really think about what we want to do from our heart. A woman should be gritty and bold in today's era!”
On asking how she is going to take this vision around pan-India, Jwala said, “I think it has already gone around. The word has already been spread around.”
“A lot of people were waiting for me to open an academy,” adds Jwala.
Since Jwala is a member of Sports Authority of India (SAI), Entrepreneur asked about the government support to her venture, on which Jwala said, “As of now we don’t have government support to our venture. But I believe, government should encourage any sporting venture as long as there is no interference in internal matters. We will be only reviewing players on the performance and potential and nothing else. I believe every individual is different and they should be judged on that basis.