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The AI Tech Leader: Yugandhara Lad, Founder & CEO, Virtualyyst In 2016, she started Virtualyyst as a Virtual Assistant Service startup, as a side hustle while navigating a demanding 9 to 5 job in the USA

By Entrepreneur Staff

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Yugandhara Lad, Founder & CEO, Virtualyyst

'Never say Never' is an attitude which has guided Yugandhara Lad from her early years. Hailing from a background where embarking on an entrepreneurial venture was met with apprehension due to its perceived uncertainties, she founded Virtualyyst, in 2016, which began as a Virtual Assistant Service provider and has swiftly evolved into a global powerhouse, delivering end-to-end AI solutions, automation projects, and groundbreaking VR/AR experiences.

"At Virtualyyst, in the early days our mission was simple yet powerful: to provide cost-effective virtual assistant services that catered to the needs of businesses in the USA," shares Yugandhara Lad, Founder & CEO, Virtualyyst.

Having completed her B.Tech and then M.Tech from VJTI, Mumbai, she worked in Qatar on her first job in Tata Consulting Engineers Ltd. and then made the pivotal decision to move to the States in 2013. There, she worked with Clink Gift, Sanofi, and Deloitte in New York. In 2016, she started Virtualyyst as a Virtual Assistant Service startup, as a side hustle while navigating a demanding 9 to 5 job in the USA.

"I started making good profits." But a personal setback flipped everything upside down for her. The turmoil of a divorce, coupled with taking care of her two-year-old and the startup took a toll on her mental, emotional and physical health. "My lowest ebb was a defining moment, a juncture where the desire to surrender loomed large. As a single mother and entrepreneur, the challenges were colossal. Forced to navigate the complexities of parenting alone, while simultaneously steering a fledgling business, the weight of responsibility seemed insurmountable." On the verge of losing everything, her two-year-old said, "Mom, if you give up, I won't have any family. Please don't give up, I will always be with you."

"Virtualyyst" is a rapidly expanding AI & ML startup dedicated to augmenting human capabilities to foster Creation, Innovation, and Progress

A silver lining was nearby. The turning point for Lad was when she studied Business Analytics at Harvard. While studying the program, she came up with an AI & ML startup idea. And hence, in 2019, Virtualyyst began taking up AI & ML projects. "Our mission is clear: to leverage cutting-edge Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology to address real-world challenges and unlock new opportunities for growth and innovation," she shares.

During the Pandemic, the entire world was looking to digitize and automate their business processes and that's what skyrocketed the bootstrapped startup's growth. "Today, Virtualyyst stands at the forefront of the industry, with clients spanning the USA, UK, and India. Our team of nearly 60 skilled AI & ML experts drives our success, delivering cutting-edge solutions that empower businesses to thrive in the digital age. In addition to our core AI & ML services, Virtualyyst operates an AI training center, nurturing the next generation of AI talent and equipping them with the skills needed to succeed in the competitive landscape."

She caters to industries such as finance, healthcare, retail, and manufacturing. Virtualyyst has developed a range of AI-powered solutions tailored to meet the specific needs of its clients which include AI-driven automation tools, predictive analytics platforms, virtual assistants, and customized AI applications designed to address unique business challenges, and Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality gaming experiences.

For Yugandhara, resilience is one indispensable life lesson she's learnt in her journey, "Approach challenges with a resilient mindset, knowing they are opportunities in disguise."

Up next, they aim to launch a new AI Tech product and start an AI digital school for 600 orphans by the end of 2024. Virtualyyst has set its sights on a potential IPO by 2025 and to become a billiondollar AI Tech company by 2029.

Entrepreneur Staff

Entrepreneur Staff

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