Forbes 30 Under 30, South Asia: 2017

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Paradise Sorouri, Afghan rapper
Adapted from a photograph from her Facebook page
Shougat Nazbin Khan, Bangladesh
Sonam Pelden, Bhutan
Alia Bhatt in Highway, India
Safaath Ahmed Zahir, Maldives
Anoka Abeyrathne, Sri Lanka

Indpaedia’s volunteers have tried to extract and archive the names and citations of all South Asian achievers who were included in the Forbes 30 UNDER 30 ASIA list for 2017. It was a painstaking process because in Forbes’ elaborate visual layout nationalities are not mentioned. Our volunteers looked for South Asian- sounding names and South Asian- looking photographs.

Therefore, who would have thought that Kristin Kagetsu or Lisa von Rabenau were in the list because of their work for India? Or that the saucy, defiant-looking Paradise Sorouri could be an Afghan and a rapper? It was by sheer chance that we found their names. Contrariwise, two achievers with South Asian- sounding names, now working in Australia and China, gave their countries of origin as South Africa and the UK.

Achievers from the South Asian Diaspora have been listed under the country of their origin.

So, if we have omitted any achiever from South Asia or of South Asian origin the omission is inadvertent and may please be pointed out in a message to the Facebook community, All information used will be gratefully acknowledged in your name.

This is a collection of articles archived for the excellence of their content.
Additional information may please be sent as messages to the Facebook
community, All information used will be gratefully
acknowledged in your name.



Lotfullah Najafizada

Director, TOLOnews TV

Najafizada is the head of TOLOnews TV, the first 24-hour news channel in Afghanistan. He started out in journalism as a designer at a small newspaper in the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif, before getting a job in the online department of Kabul-based media group MOBY. When the idea for TOLOnews TV came up in MOBY in 2010, Najafizada was selected as the one to run it.

Paradise Sorouri

Singer, 143BandMusic

Paradise Sorouri is Afghanistan's first female rapper, an honor that sadly comes with some risks. Writing and performing songs that focus on gender inequality in her country - where about 87 percent women have faced some type of violence according to the UN - Sorouri has endured death threats and physical attacks for her music and activism. She remains a vocal advocate for women's rights in Afghanistan, and has been recognized by the UN for her work.


Shougat Nazbin Khan

Age, 27


Shougat Nazbin Khan founded H. A. Digital School & College on her family's land in northern Bangladesh, with the goal of providing education for the rural poor through digital tools. The school charges a minimal tuition while offering free textbooks, school uniforms and transport. Khan, who has helped 600 children so far, received the Commonwealth Youth Award for Asia in 2016. She has also developed a low-cost solar irrigation system for which she was awarded the Green Talent award in 2015.

Md Mizanur Rahman

Founder, Physically-challenged Development Foundation

Founded in 2008, the Physically-Challenged Development Foundation (PDF) is a nonprofit organization helping disabled youth in Bangladesh. The organization provides work skill trainings while trying to raise awareness of disability issues in the country.


Sonam Pelden

Regional Head of Marketing, ServisHero

ServisHero is a Malaysia-based on-demand services provider. Users can order a dozen local services, from taxis to home cleaning, through its smartphone app. Last year, the company raised $2.7 million from Golden Gate Ventures, Cradle Seed Ventures and YTL Group among others. It has since expanded into Singapore and Thailand. Prior to ServisHero, Sonam worked with the Economist in New York, the United Nations and the Asian Development Bank. She holds a MBA from the University of Oxford and studied neuroscience and economics at Brown University.


Srinivas Reddy Aellala, Nalin Gupta

Srinivas Reddy Aellala, 25;

Nalin Gupta, 27

Cofounders, Auro Robotics

Led by Gupta and Reddy, Y Combinator alum Auro Robotics manufactures self-driving shuttles for use in contained environments such as college campuses, retirement homes and amusement parks. So far, they've successfully launched driverless shuttles at Santa Clara University, with plans for near future expansion in Asia.

Aditya Agarwalla

Cofounder, Kisan Network

Backed by the Thiel Fellowship and Y Combinator, Kisan Network is an online marketplace for small-scale farmers in India. A smartphone acts as a middleman, facilitating sales between the farmers and institutional buyers lowering costs on the buyers' end and securing better deals for the farmers. In less than a year, more than 1 million pounds of crops have been moved through his platform.

Abhinav Aggarwal, Raghav Aggarwal

Abhinav Aggarwal, 26;

Raghav Aggarwal, 29

Cofounders, Fluid AI

Mumbai-based Fluid AI was founded by the two brothers in 2008. The startup offers intuitive user experiences and data analytics for businesses including Rolls Royce and Vodafone. It was also a winner of the 2012 TechCrunch Disrupt Hackathon in New York, and one of the selected startups under Indian PM Modi's Startupindia campaign.

Gaurav Aggarwal, Shubham Maheshwari

Gaurav Aggarwal, 24;

Shubham Maheshwari, 23

Cofounders, Healofy


Cofounders, Healofy

Aggarwal and Maheshwari are the cofounders of Healofy, a P2P content-based platform for new and expecting parents -- as well as doctors -- to share their concerns and advice. The startup was accepted into Facebook's 'FBStart program' and launched a WhatsApp Helpline by developing a smart assistant bot. They use the bot to provide vaccine-related information and other tips to users.

Vaibhav Agrawal

Associate Partner, Lightspeed Venture Partners

Agrawal is an associate partner at Lightspeed India Partners Advisors LLP, a California-based early stage tech investor overseeing more than $4 billion in funds. Agrawal, who focuses on consumer and enterprise investments, holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and a degree in medicine from Mumbai University.

Shikha Ahluwalia, Tushar Ahluwalia

Shikha Ahluwalia, 25;

Tushar Ahluwalia, 29

Cofounders, StalkBuyLove


Cofounders, StalkBuyLove

Brother-sister duo Tushar Ahuwalia and Shikha Ahuwalia cofounded StalkBuyLove, a womenswear e-commerce website aiming to redefine how fashion labels do business. The startup controls every step of apparel manufacturing, right from buying fabric, designing, to the actual stitching of a garment. It combines this with the philosophy of just in time - apparel is not actually manufactured until a customer hits the purchase button. In March 2016, the startup announced it had raised an undisclosed figure from a series of investors including 500 Startups.

Faisal Ali

Martial Arts Coach, Ali's Sports Academy

Faisal Ali, a former international martial arts champion, set up a small martial arts training academy in the rural district of Bandipora, in the India-adminstered state of Kashmir. He's responsible for training 8-year-old world kickboxing champion Tajamul Islam, as well as 7-year-old Asian Karate gold medallist Hashim Mansoor. Faisal received the prestigious B.R. Ambedkar Sports Foundation's B.R. Ambedkar National Award in November, for his contribution to 'peace building activities' in the Kashmir region.

Ishita Anand

Founder, BitGiving

Ishita Anand founded BitGiving, India's first online social crowdfunding platform in December 2013. Under her leadership, Bitgiving has partnered with charities such as CRY (Children's Rights And You), and Amnesty International and was instrumental in raising $88,000 in funds for India's National Ice Hockey team as well as aid funds after the Nepal earthquakes: 2015-16 .

Aafreen Ansari, Harsh Songra

Aafreen Ansari, 20;

Harsh Songra, 20

Cofounders, Time Ahead

Time Ahead

Cofounders, Time Ahead

Born with Dyspraxia, a neurological disorder which affects motor skills and other cognitive behavior, Songra was not in fact diagnosed until the age of 9 because he lived in a small town in India that lacked adequate care. This spurred the college dropout to band together with friend and fellow college dropout Ansari to create app developing company Time Ahead. Their MyChild app helps parents detect developmental disorders in their children at the critical stage -- between month 1 and 24.

Sanket Avlani

Curator, Taxi Fabric

In 2015, Avlani took a close look at Mumbai's ubiquitous black and yellow taxi cabs and decided they needed a bit more color. Launching Taxi Fabric, a company that pairs taxi drivers with designers, he brought in the concept of using taxis as a canvas for designers to create new interiors -- and showcasing themselves as new talent. The idea has now spread to other cities across India.

Saarthak Bakshi

Cofounder, International Fertility Centre

Bakshi is the cofounder and chief executive of New Delhi-based infertility treatment provider, International Fertility Centre (IFC), which operates more than 10 clinics across India, Nepal and Afghanistan. Using profit from IFC, he also launched the Upkaar Surrogacy Welfare Trust to improve the lives of surrogate mothers affiliated with IFC, where they are given opportunities to seek vocational training.

Abhinandan Balasubramanian

Founder, Premier Futsal

Abhinandan Balasubramian is one of the men behind India's first futsal league, Premier Futsal. Futsal is a sport like soccer, but played on a smaller court, primarily indoors, requiring more agile footwork. Started in 2016, with players from 21 countries, Premier Futsal's broadcasts reached over 50 million viewers with an overall audience of over 700 million. Balasubramian - a serial entrepreneur with succesful ventures like Chefhost and altflo tied to his name - serves as CEO and Director of Business Strategy at Premier Futsal. The league is associated with high profile names from the world of soccer, such as Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Ronaldinho, Michel Salgado, Cafu and Hernan.

Debartha Banerjee

Director, Sampurn(e)arth Environment Solutions

Sampurn(e)arth is a waste management startup operating out of Mumbai. The company offers waste audit services and installs waste management systems to individuals, corporates, townships and schools in India, with an aim of addressing the problems of landfill, greenhouse gases and water pollution. In 2014, Sampurn(e)arth won first place at the Global Social Venture Competition, organized by the Haas School of Business at the University of California -- Berkeley.

Alia Bhatt

Actress, Entrepreneur

Indian actress Alia Bhatt has acted in over 20 high-grossing Bollywood movies. At least six of the films she has acted in grossed well over $15 million worldwide in opening weeks. With a huge fan-following in India and overseas, she has been recognized multiple times for her acting, including winning the 2016 Filmfare Award for best Actress. In 2012, she got her first leading role as an 18-year-old in the movie 'Student of The Year'. Bhatt also launched own eponymous fashion-label, for Indian e-commerce portal Jabong.

Srikanth Bolla

Founder, Bollant Industries

Srikant Bolla was born blind into a family of farmers in rural India - and went on to become the first international blind student at MIT, where he studied business management. Post-MIT, Bolla chose to return to India where he set up Bollant Industries in Hyderabad, a company that employs and trains differently-abled individuals to manufacture eco-friendly and compostable packaging. The company has been a recent recipient of an undisclosed investment funding from Ratan Tata believed to be around $1.3 million.

Raghav Chandra, Varun Khaitan

Raghav Chandra, 27;

Varun Khaitan, 29

Cofounders, UrbanClap


Cofounders, UrbanClap

Cofounded by Khaitan and Chandra, UrbanClap is an app-based services marketplace where users can book a wide variety of professional services, from plumbers to yoga instructors. They have served around 1.5 million customers and have a network of about 65,000 professionals across India. They count former chairman of Tata Group Ratan Tata, and Snapdeal cofounder Kunal Bahl among their investors.

Sudheendra Chilappagari


Founded in 2015, Belong is an online recruiting platform based in Bangalore, India. The startup's engine curates talent data across 90 different professional networks and communities to help companies discover an untapped pool of relevant talent without the need for resumes at all. It also helps recruiters strategies their approach by using Passivity Index which can indicate how open a candidate is to an opportunity using factors such as frequency of job change, market trends and social signals. Belong recently raised $10 million in series B funding led by Sequoia Capital.

Hrishikesh Datar

Founder, Vakilsearch Legal Solutions

Datar, a lawyer by trade, founded Vakilsearch ("vakil" means lawyer in Hindi), an online platform that provides legal services to startups, corporates and professionals in India. The startup offers a wide range of services including company incorporation, compliance, tax filing and property agreements. Founded in 2011, the company -- which aims to streamline legal services at an affordable price -- has so far served over 150,000 customers.

Aniket Deb

Founder, Bizongo

Seeing an opportunity in India's multi-billion-dollar packaging industry, Deb launched Bizongo - an online marketplace for businesses looking for packaging and material-handling solutions for their particular industry, from hospitality to retail. To date, Bizongo says it has 1,000+ customers and has shipped a diverse range of products to 100 cities across India. The startup raised about $3 million in series A funding last year.

Bisman Deu

Inventor, Green Wood

At age 15, Deu invented "Green Wood", a low-cost material made of rice waste which could be used to build housing for the underprivileged. The product also reduced rice burning in North India, a major contributor to pollution across the region. The savvy 18-year-old, who was hosted as a keynote speaker and panelist by UNICEF, has also started the initiative "Color the World Pink", aimed at promoting women entrepreneurs. She is currently a student at the University of Warwick in the U.K.

Enbasekar Dinadayalane, Satish Kannan

Enbasekar Dinadayalane, 27;

Satish Kannan, 27



Kannan and Dinadayalane created Docsapp, a smartphone application that removes barriers to patient-doctor consultations in India such as geography time. Patients can consult with a doctor and share medical reports or photographs over a secure platform in the comfort of their homes. The app's chat function is available in English and 17 Indian languages. More than 500,000 patients have already accessed the app.

Abhishek Garg, Riddhi Mittal

Abhishek Garg, 28;

Riddhi Mittal, 26

cofounders, Finomena


cofounders, Finomena

Bangalore-based fintech platform Finomena extends small loans to Indian millennials, allowing them to buy everyday items like electronics, home goods, furniture etc. This is done by assessing applicants' creditworthiness based on a wide range of information including those available in the public domain as well as their digital footprint. The business, started in 2015, raised seed funding from investors including Matrix Partners last year.

Sharath Gayakwad


India's first Paralympic swimmer, coach and Arjuna award winner Sharath Gayakwad has won 96 medals - 55 domestic and 41 international. Swimming wasn't enough - he realized that the struggle to find swim apparel was still difficult in India - so he formed Gamatics, an aggregrator between international brands and domestic retailers, for anyone to find swimwear in India.

Kovid Gupta


Kovid Gupta is an Indian-American author, screenwriter and filmmaker. He is best known for his two non-fiction books: "Kingdom of The Soap Queen: The Story of Balaji Telefilms" and "Redrawing India: The Teach For India Story". Gupta is also in charge of business development at Bollywood studio Vinod Chopra Films.

Ashwath Hegde

Founder, EnviGreen Biotech India

Hedge is the founder of Envigreen, the creator of a patented, 100% eco-friendly and 180-day biodegradable plastic-free bag. The product is made out of ingredients such as tapioca fibre and vegetable waste, which dissolve naturally. It is already on sale in Qatar and Abu Dhabi. The Envigreen product range also includes bin liners and kitchen aprons -- all 100% biodegradable.

Chanakya Hridaya, Rajesh Yabaji

Chanakya Hridaya, 27;

Rajesh Yabaji, 28

Cofounders, BlackBuck


Cofounders, BlackBuck

BlackBuck is a B2B trucking marketplace which connects companies with truckers and freight operators across 300 locations in India. Cofounded by Hridaya and Yabaji, BlackBuck allows customers to request trucks based on their requirements like size and timing while its app brings an Uber-like simplicity to booking trucks. BlackBuck received $100 million in funding so far.

Vinesh Johny

Cofounder & Chef, Lavonne Academy of Baking Science & Pastry Arts

Earlier this year, Indian chef Vinesh Johny estaiblished a café and a new cooking practice project to help students at his Lavonne Academy of Baking Science&Pastry Arts hone their skills. He also won the prestigious Restaurant India Award 2016, for Pastry Chef of the Year.

Kristin Kagetsu

Cofounder, Saathi

Along with her cofounders, Kagetsu has been working towards manufacturing affordable and biodegradable sanitary pads for women without access to feminine products in India. The U.S.-born MIT graduate took the business to Ahmedabad in the Indian state of Gujarat where all design and manufacturing of the banana fiber sanitary pads now takes place. Completely biodegradable within 6 months, regular-priced purchases allow for subsidized products for rural women.

Munaf Kapadia

Chief Eating Officer, The Bohri Kitchen

The Bohri Kitchen is a famous home-dining spot in India. It started out in 2014, when Kapadia invited friends home for Bohri cuisine (see Bohra cuisine) food that came from a small Muslim community in Yemen before spreading across the Middle East and South Asia -- to keep his mother busy. In the following years it evolved into The Bohri Kitchen, where 14 people are treated to a mouth-watering six-course meal. Kapadia's mother still leads the cooking, while he takes care of branding, marketing and social media.

Dipa Karmakar

Dipa Karmakar was the first Indian female gymnast to ever compete in the Olympics during the last games held in Rio de Janeiro - and the first Indian gymnast to compete in 52 years. While she didn't win a medal, she ranked an impressive fourth on her first-ever Olympic outing, missing the bronze by a hair's breadth - 0.15 points. She performed the Produnova vault in the finals - making her one of only five gymnasts to ever successfully do so. Karmakar started training at the age of six and has earlier won a bronze at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.","

Ankit Kawatra

Founder, Feeding India

Kawatra's Feeding India tries to solve the country's hunger problem by providing free meals through volunteers and donation centres. It operates a smartphone app where restaurants and individuals can sign up to donate food, which are then collected and distributed to people in need. The nonprofit organization has a network of more than 4,500 volunteers, who run regular feeding programs in more than 45 Indian cities and has served more than 4.8 million meals so far.

Sanjay Kumaran, Shravan Kumaran

Sanjay Kumaran, 15;

Shravan Kumaran, 17


Cofounders, GoDimensions

The two teenage brothers cofounded GoDimensions, a mobile app developer when they were just 12 and 10 respectively. To date, they've built a total of seven apps for the App Store and three for Google Play, including goDonate, a platform for sharing excess food, clothes and furniture with those in need. Their apps have clocked over 70,000 downloads in over 60 countries. They hold the distinction of being the youngest Mobile Application Programmers in India by Apple.

Jaspreet Makkar

Founder, WeDoSky

Founded in 2014, New Delhi-based WeDoSky provides drone mapping, inspection and surveillance services. The startup also offers visual data processing services, where clients can upload aerial images for detailed analytics. It has completed more than 400 projects so far, working with clients including Indian property companies PropTiger and Commonfloor, media company NDTV as well as Neemrana Hotels.

Arjun Malhotra, Rohan Malhotra

Arjun Malhotra, 26;

Rohan Malhotra, 29

Founding Partners, Investopad Investopad

Founding Partners, Investopad

Founded in 2014, Investopad is an Indian early stage technology investment firm with offices in New Delhi, Gurgaon and Bangalore. It has made nine investments over the course of the last two years, including payment startup Mypoolin, energy data analytics platform Zenatix as well as mobile internet service provider Mavin.

Sakshi Malik

Sakshi Malik, 24


Sakshi Malik is the first Indian woman to win a medal in Rio in wrestling, where she bagged the bronze. A freestyle wrestler, she has previously won the bronze at the 2015 Asian Wrestling Championships and the 2014 Commonwealth Games. Hailing from Rohtak, a small town in North India, Malik faced a lot of local opposition to her desire to wrestle when she took up the sport at age 12. She is the fourth Indian woman to win an Olympic medal.

Jatin Malwal, Bhuvan Rustagi

Jatin Malwal, 24;

Bhuvan Rustagi, 29


Cofounders, Lendbox

Malwal and Rustagi are the cofounders of Indian peer-to-peer lending platform Lendbox. Founded in 2015, the site has already given out more than 1500 loans and attracted over 45,000 registered users -- including investors and borrowers -- so far. Lendbox uses data analytical and psychometric tools, along with the more traditional data points, to assess a customer's creditworthiness - thus making loans accessible to those who may not be eligible for financing otherwise.

Adarsh Manpuria

Cofounder, FabHotels

Manpuria is the cofounder of FabHotels, an Indian budget hotel aggregator targeting business travelers. The two-year-old startup, which operates by partnering with more than 150 hotels across 15 Indian cities to standardize their services, has raised a total of $10 million from investors including Accel Partners and Qualcomm Ventures. Manpuria is a graduate of University of Pennsylvania's Wharton business school.

Ketan Mehta

Founder, Rays Power Infra

Founded in 2011, Mehta's Rays Power Infra builds solar power projects for households and companies across India. The startup also provides advisory services to investment firms looking at the country's solar industry.

Mandovi Menon, Varun Patra

Mandovi Menon, 27;

Varun Patra, 27

Cofounders, Homegrown


Cofounders, Homegrown

Varun and Mandovi set up popular content platform Homegrown, which produces India-specific editorial content written on taboo subjects avoided by mainstream media. The business gets its revenue as a globally-oriented marketing and events agency; they've partnered on projects with everyone from Nike to Audi to Refinery29.

Shreya Mishra, Pranay Surana

Shreya Mishra, 28;

Pranay Surana, 26

Cofounders, Flyrobe


Cofounders, Flyrobe

Mishra and Surana launched Flyrobe, an on-demand wardrobe service that lets consumers rent clothes at a fraction of the retail price, in 2015. Particularly popular for wedding fashions, Flyrobe's Uber-like model replaced $1 million in sales as rentals, within just two months of launching its bride and groom collection. Its service includes three-hour local deliveries and pickups. Flyrobe has been endorsed by 20 Bollywood celebrities on social media, which has helped to take away the stigma of used clothing. The startup has raised $7 million from IDG Ventures, Sequoia Capital and several angel investors.

Kavin Bharti Mittal

Founder, hike

When Kavin Mittal moved back to India in 2011, the Imperial College engineering graduate had already built two successful startups: AppSpark and MoviesNow. But according to Mittal, it was a trip to a street food stall with friends in New Delhi that sparked the idea for hike ? an instant messaging service designed to rival WhatsApp. Noting the prevalence of the Nokia 1100 mobile phone at that time, he thought of the potential impact the Internet could have on India's enormous population. "I had an iPhone 4S at that time, with apps and Edge, not even 3G... there were all these people who had no clue what the Internet actually meant," he says. "India has a population of over one billion people, how would they come online?" Today hike has over 100 million users, is valued at $1.4 billion and has raised $175 million. On his India market vision, he says, "You never know. A market like India is very diverse. There are 200 million mobile Internet users, many of whom are accidental users or sachet-sized data users."

Vaishnavi Murali

Founder, Eikowa Art

Eikowa Art is an India-based online art gallery curating works from many of the country's contemporary artists. The site also helps them connect with potential buyers. Founder Murali says she made $80,000 within the first 10 months of its launch in 2015.

Akshay Navaladi

Founder, Healthskool Clinics

Navaladi is the cofounder of Healthskool Clinics, a New Delhi-based neighborhood clinic chain providing affordable healthcare services to almost 300,000 patients a month. Equipped with in-house pharmacies and sample collection facilities, its clinics offer consultations starting at US$3. Navaladi previously worked as an associate at McKinsey&Company in New York before returning to India to found his own business.

Rohit Pothukuchi

Founder, Standard Indian Legal Citation

Pothukuchi is the founder of Standard Indian Legal Citation (SILC), an Indian academic citation system covering more than 250 law schools in the country which is also included in Harvard Law School library's list of foreign citation manuals. SILC is also free to use, giving less privileged lawyers access to important style information. Pothukuchi, who was a visiting scholar at Columbia Law School, is also an affiliate fellow of the Harvard Law School Center.

Anand Prakash

Founder, AppSecure India

Founded in 2016, AppSecure India is a security auditing startup based in Bangalore. The firm has worked with more than 30 startups, including Flipkart, PhonePe, Paytm, to find loopholes in their security systems. Prakash and his team work with a network of trusted hackers, who investigate vulnerabilities in the clients' systems, allowing users to fix them. The startup has also been listed on Facebook's "White Hat Bug Bounty Program," a list thanking users for reporting security vulnerabilities.

Lisa von Rabenau

Head of Engineering, Re-Materials

Re-Materials uses sustainable, locally sourced materials to create modular roofing solutions for impoverished households. Started in 2014, the startup is now a 35-person team based in Ahmedabad. They've added innovations such as solar and LED panel lighting for roofs and have made their product monsoon-friendly for the Indian climate. Lisa von Rabenau, originally an employee, is now a partner with Re-Materials.

Prusothman Sina Raja

Cofounder, Privi Medical

Singapore's Privi Medical is a medtech startup that makes transformative medical devices. Their flagship solution is a disposable, drug-free cure for low-grade haemorrhoids that can be used by the sufferers in the comfort of their homes. Since the solution is drug-free, it will be especially helpful to pregnant women -- a group where the incidence of this problem is particularly high. Sina Raja cofounded Privi Medical in 2014, and last year the startup raised $1.1 million in seed funding.

Anjana Reddy

Founder, USPL

Reddy is the founder of Indian fashion company Universal Sportsbiz, which boasts a clutch of celebrity-endorsed brands specializing in trendy clothing and accessories, including Collectabillia, Wrogn and Imara. Her brands sell in more than 70 stores, as well as on e-commerce platforms like Myntra. Wrogn is co-owned by Indian cricket star Virat Kohli, while cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar is one of the co-investors in Collectabillia.

Anirudh Sharma

Social Impact Technologist, Graviky Labs

Sharma's Graviky Labs makes paint and ink from India's polluted air by capturing carbon soot through its KAALINK unit, a retrofit device fitted on vehicles or chimneys. The soot then undergoes a purification process to remove heavy metals and carcinogens before transforming into ink. Sharma, a chronic inventor, previously created LeChal, a smart shoe that can help the visually-impaired walk by sending gentle vibrations.

Abhinav Shashank

Cofounder, Innovaccer

Shashank, an Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur graduate, came up with the idea for Innovaccer while working on a project at Harvard. The three-year-old big data startup provides businesses with a tool for pooling and analysing large volumes of information from multiple sources. It is actively used by healthcare firms, hedge funds and in e-commerce.

Shashank ND

Founder & CEO, Practo

Practo, an app that helps patients find nearby doctors in India and the Philippines, landed $55 million in fresh funding in a round led by Chinese web giant Tencent earlier this year. With its war chest full, the startup is investing more in fast-growing markets including Singapore, Philippines, Indonesia as well as Brazil.

Trisha Shetty

Trisha Shetty, 26

Founder, SheSays

Founder, SheSays

Shetty founded SheSays, an Indian non-profit that empowers the country's women to act against sexual violence by providing education, legal, medical as well as psychological support. So far, the organization has engaged more than 60,000 young people through educational workshops and online, creating awareness and support to survivors who often reach out to share their personal stories and ask for help through SheSays' social media platforms. SheSays also partners with the country's universities and other social organizations to raise awareness of these issues.

Viren Shetty

Cofounder, PlusMargin

Enterprise e-commerce companies which was developed by a team of data scientists, engineers and mathematicians. It combines AI and behavioral psychology to analyze each user's behavior and predict the best ways to persuade them to make a purchase, which has proven to increase conversion rate and revenue for businesses by over 30%. Funded by 500 Startups, Cub Capital and Singapore Press Holdings among others, the startup has already secured several global multi - billion dollar brands as customers.

Pushkar Singh, Sudarshan Ravi, Ankit Parasher


Cofounders, LetsTransport

LetsTransport, the Bangalore-based logistics company was cofounded in 2015 by Pushkar Singh and his friends Sudarshan Ravi and Ankit Parasher. In addition to features like 24X7 service and real-time tracking, its Uber-like app allows customers to access their drivers directly. The idea came after seeing logistics managers struggle to ship food products out of the factory on time. While they operate in India for now, plans are to take the firm international.

Richa Singh

Richa Singh, 30

Cofounder, YourDOST

Indian Institute of Technology graduate Richa Singh created the online portal for mental health and wellness, YourDOST -- 'Dost' means 'friend' in Hindi -- in 2014, after experiencing the suicide of a fellow IIT student worried about grades. Singh wanted to prevent future incidents and her site hosts vetted, affordable counsellors who are available for anyone to talk to, confidentially, for free.

Ashwin Srivastava

Cofounder, Idein Ventures

Srivastava is the cofounder of Idein Ventures, an early-stage venture capital and growth-stage private equity firm which has operations in India, United Arab Emirates, the United States and West Africa. Idein's portfolio companies include virtual reality startup Infurnia, fitness startup Qriyo as well as online household service provider ZoEasy Solutions.

Kanika Tekriwal

Cofounder & CEO, JetSetGo

JetSetGo, an India-based private jet concierge service, grew its revenues more than seven fold last year, as more rich Indians rent private jets and helicopters from Tekriwal's site. She also won The National Entrepreneurship Award for ecommerce from the Indian government.

Anvitha Vijay

Founder, Smartkins Animals

Vijay began coding at the age of seven after watching tutorials on Youtube. She went on to develop an app called Smartkins Animals to help young children learn about wildlife. Last year, at the age of nine, she was invited to attend WWDC -- the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference -- as part of the tech giant's 350 scholarships for young coders. She was the youngest attendee.

Uppma Virdi

Founder, Chai Walli

A practising corporate lawyer with Clearpoint Counsel in Melbourne, Chai Walli's Uppma Virdi is also the granddaughter of an Ayurvedic doctor who specialized in spices. Her tea blends and products are sold online and supplied to everyone from the regular home-shopper to supermarkets, restaurants, and yoga studios across Australia. Virdi was named Australia's Businesswoman of the year for 2016 at the Indian Australian Business and Community Awards.


Safaath Ahmed Zahir

Age, 26

Founder, Women and Democracy NGO

Zahir is a leading women's rights activist in the Maldives. She founded the non-profit organization Women and Democracy to help promote gender diversity in workplaces across the country. Last year, she received the Queen's Young Leaders Award at Buckingham Palace for taking the lead in transforming the lives of others and making a lasting difference in her community.


Aashish Acharya, Sabin Bhandari

Aashish Acharya, 25;

Sabin Bhandari, 25 (both: Nepal)

Cofounders, WhiteSpace


Cofounders, WhiteSpace

The duo came up with their idea for an online apparel store -- the first of its kind in Nepal -- in 2012 while in college. Threadpaints quickly established itself as a trendy marketplace selling everything from t-shirts designed by hip local designers, to shoulder bags, watches and perfumes. And the brand remains true to its roots, raising funds through its 'T-shirts For Relief' campaign to help those affected in the aftermath of the devastating Nepal earthquakes: 2015-16 .

Surya Karki

Cofounder, Diyalo Foundation

Karki is the founder of Nepal's Diyalo Foundation, which provides free education to children living in rural parts of the country. It also works to develop sustainable energy and farming by offering related services and training programs to rural residents. Born in rural Nepal to a single mother, Karki won a national scholarship at the age of eight and is currently working on his master's degree at Tsinghua University in Beijing.

Ravi Kumar, Mia Mitchell

Ravi Kumar, 29/ Nepal;

Mia Mitchell, 28/ USA

Cofounders, Code for Nepal

Code for Nepal

Cofounders, Code for Nepal

Husband and wife Kumar and Mitchell cofounded Code for Nepal, an organization aiming to increase digital literacy and use of big data in the country. To that end, they have launched last year to make data on the country more accessible. Kumar has helped rebuild more than 25 schools in the remote villages of Nepal, similar to the one he comes from, and now serves as a lead digital strategist at the World Bank in Washington, D.C. Mitchell works on foreign assistance at the White House office of Management and Budget.

Prabhat Yadav

Founder, Explore Gadgets

Yadav's Kathmandu-based company Explore Gadgets began as a YouTube channel in 2012, just after he'd completed his final year of school. The channel introduced his Nepalese audience to the latest technological gadgets, which are often difficult and expensive to access in Nepal. He's the only "YouTuber" in Nepal to receive a Silver Play Button award -- an award for reaching 100,000 subscribers -- from Youtube. The channel now has over 360,000 subscribers.


Waqas Ali

Cofounder, Markhor

College dropout Waqas Ali cofounded Markhor, a luxury men's shoe brand to promote Pakistan's indigenous shoe craft. The brand retails online, cutting out the middle-man and helping small-time artisans make a profit. Initially funded through a Kickstarter campaign, Markhor has worked with over 100 craftsmen and craftswomen in the country. Markhor is the first Pakistani startup to be accepted into -- and backed by -- Y Combinator.

Bilal Athar

CEO, Wifigen

Wifigen allows companies to offer free WiFi to users in exchange for customer information upon logging in to their social media accounts. The company also offers data analytics for corporate customers who can access demographic information and user history. Athar, who is largely self-taught, founded Wifigen in 2014, and his customers include Singapore's Changi Airport, the island of Tahiti, and Unilever. He is now looking to incorporate artificial intelligence into Wifigen's algorithms.

Shahnawaz Zali


Zali is a Pakistani filmmaker who was nominated for a Student Academy Award in 2016 - in the narrative category - for his documentary on suicide bombers, 100 Steps - Sou Qadam. He's gone on to win several other accolades at international events including the Miami Independent Film Festival and the Accolade Global Film Festival. He is a communications graduate of Northwestern University's Qatar campus

Sri Lanka

Anoka Abeyrathne

Cofounder, Sustain Solutions

Abeyrathne's childhood curiosity about her surrounding environment led her down the path of conservation. Through Sri Lanka-based Sustain Solutions, Abeyrathne has replanted more than 40,000 mangroves to help sustain the livelihoods of fish farmers and improve local environments. She also started a social program to educate villagers in Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh and Cambodia about environmental protection.

Rakitha Malewana

Founder, ideanerd SL

The research of Sri Lankan scientist Malewana focuses on using nano technologies to control the spread of HIV/AIDS. In 2015, he was received by the country's president, Maithripala Sirisena, for his work. Malewana is also the founder of non-profit organization ideanerd SL, which aims to establish a culture of scientific research in Sri Lanka by focussing on encouraging innovation among school children.

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