Travel has become extremely important as the pandemic restrictions have been eased. Leaving their houses has become most people’s coping mechanism after being locked up for almost a year. In the world of expensive resorts and exclusive Airbnbs comes OYO to provide relief to our pockets and hearts.

The interesting facts about OYO are not limited to just its affordable hotels and good service but also extend to the inspiring life story of the company’s founder and CEO, Ritesh Agarwal. 

Who Is Ritesh Agarwal?

OYO rooms, also known as OYO Hotels & Homes is one of the most successful start-ups of the country and is India’s largest hotel chain. OYO has over 23,000 hotels, 8,50,000 rooms and 46,000 vacation homes across the globe. It is the brainchild of Ritesh Agarwal, a 26 year old entrepreneur with a singular aim in mind.

A student of Indian School of Business & Finance, Delhi, Ritesh Agarwal dropped out of college midway through to pursue his passion of running a business. He traveled across the country at the age of 17 and eventually launched Oravel which was based on the design and workings of Airbnb. However, soon Oravel branched out to become OYO rooms to counter existing issues. 

Ritesh Agarwal is the sole Asian resident to have won a Thiel fellowship. He was nominated for the fellowship the very year he launched Oravel.

The fellowship is designed by Peter Thiel, the founder of Paypal, who provided the 22-year-old Ritesh Agarwal with a sum of $100,000 to start his start-up journey. Ritesh is also the sole Indian to have won the fellowship.

Read More: A LinkedIn Thread Is On Fire Bashing OYO Rooms’ Fraudulent Acts; Customers Claim Being Scammed

Ritesh has been a tech freak for most of his life. His two shared passions are technology and world travel. He started coding at the age of 10 while he traveled through India and promptly realized that there is a dire need for cheap, affordable and good hotels in the country which are equipped with decent service towards the guests.

The “affordable” hotels at the time did not provide necessary services such as AC, Wi-Fi, comfortable beds and breakfast facilities. 

This proved as motivation for Ritesh to undertake an initiative to resolve this problem. Hence, he took it upon himself to combine his love for travel and his passion for technology to create something interesting and useful. He had to face a ton of hardships in the beginning due to his limited knowledge about entrepreneurship.

However, he stuck with his idea and kept developing and improving it further. Ultimately, he presented his idea to a couple investors which led to him receiving a funding of $100,000 which helped him kickstart his start-up journey. 

Ritesh Agarwal has quite a few achievements up his sleeve. At the mere age of 26, Ritesh holds prestigious awards and credentials that take most people their entire lives to earn.

He has made the Forbes ‘30 Under 30’ list in the consumer tech sector, has been named in the Top 50 Entrepreneurs in 2013 by TATA First Dot powered by NEN awards, has won the TiE-Lumis Entrepreneurial Excellence award in 2014 and has also been bestowed with the Business World Young Entrepreneur award.

Apart from being a successful entrepreneur, Ritesh is an author, a coder and an orator. His book ‘A Complete Encyclopedia Of Top 100 Engineering Colleges’ was published and immediately became a bestseller.

At the age of 16, Agarwal got a chance to be one of the 240 students who were a part of an Asian camp held at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research. He was also the youngest speaker at the ThinkEDU Panel, 2014 and is a regular at VCCircle Events.

During his college years, Ritesh used to travel and often took a train to Delhi and stayed at every odd Bed & Breakfast place. He often attended events and conferences to meet entrepreneurs and as he often could not afford registration tickets for these events, he would often sneak in and that is where the entire idea of his billion-dollar company started.

Things To Learn From Ritesh Agarwal

The story of Ritesh Agarwal sounds like the dream of every Indian aspirant. He started from an extremely humble background and went on to become one of the most accomplished people in the country. He started as a boy wonder at a young age who honed his passions and talents with determination and discipline. 

OYO stands for ‘On Your Own’ and raised $1 billion in September 2018 and a year after that in July 2019 Ritesh Agarwal bought another $2 billion shares in the company which tripled his already existing shares.

In the year 2020, Ritesh Agarwal’s net worth was around INR 7,253 crore which is $1.1 billion dollars making him the world’s youngest self-made billionaire after the effervescent Kylie Jenner.

The company has more than 72,000 rooms in 8000 hotels across 250 towns in India. The current evaluation of OYO Rooms is over $600 million. The company provides travelers with the coolest yet cheapest budget hotels.

Ritesh Agarwal is an Indian entrepreneur, billionaire, and founder and CEO of Oyo Rooms. His ideas have opened a lot of opportunities for lots of Indian Households.

OYO has created job opportunities and a way of earning for millions of people. It was a paradigm shift in the Indian hospitality market. People could afford cheap stays while even renting their places and entering the hospitality market.

Success of a teenager inspires others to work accordingly for their success. Being the World’s Second youngest Self-made Billionaire and running a successful business, Ritesh Agarwal has set an example for the youth worldwide.

OYO Rooms is backed by investors like Greenoaks Capital, Softbank Group, Lightspeed India, and Sequoia Capital. The company raised $1 billion in September 2018.

Ritesh Agarwal serves as a beacon of proof for anyone whose dreams seem too fantastical or impossible to achieve. His story is truly inspirational for every Indian girl and boy who wants to achieve something great in their life. His unique thinking and ability to solve problems made him the youngest billionaire in India.

His story serves as an example to find a major problem and find a unique solution to it, to value your own knowledge, keep on learning and try to become an expert in your select field, have the humility and ability to accept your mistakes and improve upon them and most importantly, keep working diligently and sincerely.

Images Sources: Google Images

Sources: YoSuccess, SugarMint, TheCeo +more

Meet The Blogger: Charlotte

This Post Is Tagged Under: Travel, pandemic restrictions, coping mechanisms, Airbnbs, OYO, affordable hotels, Ritesh Agarwal, OYO rooms, OYO Hotels & Homes, start-ups, entrepreneur, Indian School of Business & Finance, Delhi, Oravel, Thiel fellowship, Peter Thiel, Paypal, technology, world travel, Forbes ‘30 Under 30’, Top 50 Entrepreneurs, TATA First Dot, TiE-Lumis Entrepreneurial Excellence, Business World Young Entrepreneur, ThinkEDU Panel, VCCircle Events, Delhi, Bed & Breakfast, billionaire

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