Disruptive growth, the USP of Entrepreneur India's 35Under35 List

After year-long efforts of shortlisting entities that stood out, we tell you why these individuals are regarded as doyens

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We are back with the new class of 2019 for 35 under 35. This annual compendium is most of all a case study on how disruptive ideas can be married with intelligent growth to build a remarkable organization. The 35 rock stars come from across 28 different industries and features sportspersons, entrepreneurs, developers, singers and personalities with diverse mindsets and copious minds. The only common thread between them is their fearless forays in their respective fields, self-belief and eagerness to bring explosive impact of change in the world. These young 35 leaders’ determination can be felt like a potent force.


They are India’s shining stars and we are proud to present them to our readers as we share what is it that sets them apart. For us, choosing these visionaries is not a month’s job but a year-round preoccupation. We vet hundreds of nominations and our champion reporters personally meet and engage with many entrepreneurs to accomplish the task of creating the most unbiased list of futurists to spotlight the remarkable and enviable India Inc. There are new shades that we are getting to see in our 35 under 35 issues, which is now in its third annual edition. This year’s list has seen growth in the number of women entrepreneurs joining the ranks. Many of the founders featured in our pages are at the helm of companies that have significant global presence. The rise of technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning and their burgeoning influence can be felt in the list as many companies featured have either directly originated from AI or are abundantly using it in existing ventures.

What should be the role of Indian government in private businesses is not a new debate, but certainly an unanswered one for a long time. Is the role preventive, corrective, restrictive or developmental? The government’s approach of police(ing) brings undercurrents, which unknowingly hinders development of businesses. An instance of reducing NPAs in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) sector, got public banks to play safe, which in turn led to the shortage of capital borrowings for SMEs in past four years. And the ill effects are impacting the growth and employment generation in the SME sector, which has further reflected on GDP growth in India.

As a corrective measure, the government has gone into a new mode of debt restructuring relaxation and easy loan norms. Could this scenario had been avoided if the government was just preventive in the first place? Of late, we have seen similar musings with Angel tax that will lead to dismal impact on startups in the coming years. It is likely that capitalists and family offices who would have jointly infused funding in startups will now start looking for other avenues of investments. In an economy like India’s, it would be more impactful if the Central government can take everyone along, rather than riding one sector against the other. Our forthcoming issue will take a long view on what worked and what failed to tick in the past five years in the Indian startup ecosystem?