Ritesh Agarwal was born into a family of entrepreneurs in Orissa, India. As a child, he became interested in programming, which he learned with a book by his brother. So, he started programming since he was eight years old.
In 2011, Ritesh moved to Delhi intending to start something on his own, as well as preparing to enter University. However, unable to start University, he took advantage of his free time to read about entrepreneurship, startups, business, and Airbnb. He enrolled in a course at the University of London at the Indian Business School, but only three days later he left to start his company.
Ritesh Agarwal founded OYO Rooms when he realized that many hotels did not meet the most basic needs of travelers. He started it by calling it Oravel Stays in 2012 and allowed to get a bed in India. In a short time, Agarwal got investment from VentureNursery. Also, he took his idea to the Thiel Fellowship contest, where he received $ 100,000 from Peter Thiel, co-founder of PayPal.
With this confidence, he worked with more effort, without achieving a business model that worked, until he thought about the most annoying thing about traveling on a budget: finding a hotel that was not a crappy place. So he created an online community where the best places to stay were shared. Afterward, Oravel changed its name to Oyo Rooms, becoming a chain of hotels.
At present, OYO Rooms operates 2,200 hotels in 154 cities in India, with monthly revenues of 3.5 million dollars and 1,500 employees. OYO Rooms has been designated as one of the startups that could reach unicorn status soon.
Ritesh Agarwal has won several awards and recognitions, such as the Business World Young Entrepreneur Award. He is a regular speaker at entrepreneurial events in India, as well as belonging to the Thiel Foundation.
Ritesh Agarwal : @riteshagar