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How These Powercouples are Transforming the Startup Landscape From tech startups to traditional businesses, couples are redefining the entrepreneurial landscape in India, embodying resilience, innovation, and a deep-seated commitment to both their businesses and relationships

By Punita Sabharwal

You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

(Clockwise from top left) Aditi Bhosale Walunj and Chetan Walunj, Repos Energy;y Aditi and Sneh, The Baker's Dozen; and Priyanka and Harshil Salot, The Sleep Company

There has been a trend of couple entrepreneurs in the start-up industry for the past few years in India, these new duos join forces to navigate the complexities of business ownership together and reflect a blend of personal and professional partnership as they leverage their complementary skills, shared vision, and mutual support to carve out successful ventures.

From tech startups to traditional businesses, couples are redefining the entrepreneurial landscape in India, embodying resilience, innovation, and a deep-seated commitment to both their businesses and relationships. Their journey underscores the power of collaboration, communication, and teamwork in pursuit of entrepreneurial dreams, while also challenging conventional notions of work-life balance and the boundaries between personal and professional spheres.

Here are three power couples who are making a mark in their respective sectors together-


Aditi Bhosale Walunj & Chetan Walunj, Founders, Repos Energy

Repos was founded by Aditi Bhosale Walunj and Chetan Walunj in 2017 with a vision to help the world move towards a carbon-neutral future by bridging the gap between supply and demand of clean energy using the latest tech-enabled solutions. In the last five years, Repos has successfully established an ecosystem of services and products that has transformed energy distribution in India. Today Repos provides doorstep fuel delivery operations in 280+ cities across India through its 2000+ partners. So far, Repos has successfully distributed more than 10 crore liters of fuel through its platform, saving 14.85 million kg of carbon emissions. Today Repos employs 250+ young and energetic individuals who are eager to contribute to the growth of the nation.

Because of the impressive business acumen and leadership of Repos founders, Mr Ratan Tata decided to invest in Repos twice. The organization has also been successful in raising a pre-series A round of Rs 56 crores from undisclosed investors.

As a couple leading a business, Aditi and Chetan have learned that open and honest communication is the foundation of both personal and professional relationships. "In the office, just as at home, we strive to listen actively, speak respectfully, and ensure our messages are clear and understood. This has helped us navigate through challenges, align our goals, and make decisions that propel our company forward," shares Aditi.

As the CEO, Chetan's main responsibility is to manage the company's day-to-day business activities, while Aditi holds the position of Chief Visionary Officer, with a focus on steering the brand's marketing and setting strategic ambitions for the company's future.

Although their responsibilities differ, Chetan and Aditi maintain a close collaborative relationship, regularly exchanging updates on the new happenings within their areas of oversight. This constant dialogue ensures they remain in sync and collectively advance toward our shared objectives.

When asked about one decision they think their spouse had not taken the company would not have been where it is now, Chetan says, "Aditi's insistence on pivoting our business model to focus on sustainability was pivotal. Her vision not only differentiated us in the market but also ignited our growth. Without her foresight and conviction, our company would not have achieved its current level of success and impact."

To this, Aditi adds, "The decision Chetan made to invest in technology and innovation early on was crucial. He saw the future before it arrived, ensuring our services remained competitive and cutting-edge. Without his boldness and strategic foresight, our company wouldn't be the industry leader it is today." Managing disagreements are important for a startup's growth. To this Chetan mentions, "I recognize that there are times when our decisions may not align, but when these decisions are part of a broader strategy, we strive to grasp the perspective of one another. We give each other the necessary room to contemplate the reasoning behind certain choices, and I am firmly convinced that patience is of the utmost importance in these situations."


Sneh Jain, Co-Founder & Managing Director, The Baker's Dozen Aditi Handa, Co-Founder & Head Chef, The Baker's Dozen

The Baker's Dozen (TBD), an artisanal bakery brand was started by Aditi & Sneh in 2013 with an aim to draw attention back to the age-old goodness of sourdough bread and put it on every dining table as an essential commodity. The brand is present across 40+ cities and 3000+ touchpoints in India. The Baker's Dozen is omnichannel and retails from 50 of its stores, more than 600 Modern and general trade stores, and is available on E-Commerce and Quick Commerce channels like Instamart, BlinkIt, Big Basket, Zepto, Amazon, Flipkart, Swiggy, Zomato and more.

Talking about achieving the impossible together Aditi adds, "There have been numerous moments that stand out to us. Like when we baked our first sourdough bread— it was tricky, but we nailed it. Then, when we decided to open up a store in a new city, it felt like a huge leap, but it turned out to be a great move. Setting up our current manufacturing unit was another big win. Additionally, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, we managed to keep growing despite all the challenges, which was pretty amazing. These moments show us that when we work together, anything is possible."

They recently secured INR 33 Crore in a pre-series A funding round. "The biggest support we provide is putting more force behind each other's decision. When you have the faith and support of your co-founder the chances of executing anything successfully is almost guaranteed," says Aditi.

"One of the decisions that has propelled the company to new heights is his choice to keep moving forward. He strongly believes in not letting any problem hold him back, but instead, finding a different way to overcome it. Even when faced with challenges like Covid and lockdowns, he refused to be discouraged, not even for a single day. It's during these times that our company shifted gears and achieved significant milestones," she adds.


Stick together and never give up on each other. Take time to understand why your partner thinks a certain way before making any decisions. Rushing into things can cause problems, so it's best to take a moment to think things through before deciding.


Harshil & Priyanka Salot, Co-Founder, The Sleep Company

The Sleep Company was founded in November 2019 by Priyanka and Harshil Salot, both IIMCalcutta alumni. Harshil worked with Axis Bank and then went on to lead the family business while Priyanka worked for P&G heading brands like Ariel, Tide, and Pampers in India. Their entrepreneurial journey began when Priyanka, a young mother at the time found it difficult to get a good night's sleep, impugning her ability to be at her most efficient during the waking hours. This led to her scouring the market for a mattress that was comfortable, supportive, and durable, that went beyond the standard foam and memory foam compositions. In pursuit of the perfect mattress, the husband-wife duo teamed up with Dr. Tripathi, an ex-DRDO scientist and after years of diligent research, trials, and errors, finally cracked the code with the patented SmartGRID technology.

Talking about the kind of support and encouragement they give each other as partners and co-founders. Priyanka believes, "Both Harshil Salot (co-founder and life partner) and I share a great understanding and this stems from the fact that both of us are working towards a common goal of making India sleep and sit better. If one of us is feeling low, the other is always there to remind us about our vision which then motivates us to work together towards achieving it. Besides, we both respect and appreciate the value each one brings to the table and this keeps us motivated to do better each day."

Things will hit the fan with your co-founder. When they do, you need North Stars to guide you. Cofounder relationships are often complex to navigate in themselves, and doing it while married just adds a whole other layer of complexity to that. When Harshil and Priyanka started this journey, they had our North stars clearly defined. "Trust and respect are the foundation of our relationship and we decided that no matter the situation, we will always trust each other and share respect," adds Priyanka.

Talking about achieving the impossible together, she says, "Both Harshil and I are each other's support system, and we feel fortunate to share this special bond. It is the human tendency to doubt an individual until they succeed. But our families have been supportive throughout the entire journey.

The company has so far raised INR 184 cr in a Series C funding round led by Premji Invest and Fireside Ventures in December 2023. Furthermore, it boasts of a 200 cr ARR rate as of October 2022 and has clocked in a 400% YoY growth. By 2024, The Sleep Company is aiming to become an INR 500 CR business and hit INR 1000 CR within 4-5 years.

Punita Sabharwal

Entrepreneur Staff

Managing Editor, Entrepreneur India

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