16 Jun 2019, 13:00 — 9 min read
Background: A role model, an idol, a superhero a friend and what not. For a child, their father means all these things and a lot more. Father’s Day falls on the third Sunday of June every year and this year 16 June will be celebrated as Father’s Day throughout the country. To commemorate this special day and to let them know that they mean the world to us, GlobalLinker members share their fondest memories of their fathers, how their fathers helped them in their entrepreneurial journey and made them who they are today.
On fuelling the passion
Natarajan Ramanathan's story is unique because despite being just a cashier in a departmental store,his father fuelled the passion for many people to achieve their dreams, including Natranjan himself.
Natarajan is the owner of an Insurance Agency and his expertise has been utilised in Global Insurance companies such Alfa, Unitrin, Norwich Union and Zurich Insurance Group.
He shares, “We were a large family who lived in a single bed room house. My father was a cashier in a one departmental storein Delhi. While he worked as a cashier through his life, he supported many in realising their dreams and imaginations and personally helped many people.The year was 1970. My friend, who was the son of a family friend and studied in the same school as mine, came to visit us. My father got into a light conversation with him and seeing how bright he was in his studies said to him," You must try getting the Nobel Prize like Sir C V Raman as you have been recognised to pursue science with scholarship.” Later, this very boy went on to do his M.Sc. and then moved to UK where he completed his Ph. D in chemistry. The boy, who achieved several scholastic accolades, is none other than Dr. K. Kannan, and was shortlisted for the Nobel Prize in chemistry in the year 2004. He wrote to me a few days back saying, "I am still puzzled why that thought came to your father!"
My father told my friend, "You must try getting the Nobel Prize like Sir C V Raman". Years later he was shortlisted for the Nobel Prize in chemistry! - Natarajan Ramanathan
Similar is the story of Jaimin Doshi's father, who motivated him to take chances and foray into a field that was way out of his comfort zone. He shares, “In 2008 when I was in my first year of MBA, we came across this business of printing and packaging. It was a completely new opportunity for me. With my father’s support and advice I started Colours Polymers in 2009 and just recently completed 10 successful years in this Industry.”
On creating a platform for the second generation entrepreneurs
Kiran Shah's father founded the iconic Apsara Icecreams Pvt Ltd in the year 1971. Later joined by Kiran, they scaled the business together and today their icecream chain boasts of more than 50 flavours and also has a sugar free range of ice creams for diabetic and health conscious customers. Kiran shares, “Me and my father together learnt through customer feedback and audits at ice cream parlours in order to improve our business. We are always looking to improvise and take our service to the next level. Product-wise, there are many players at a high level. The differentiating is ensuring that a customer comes again and again to a parlour.”
I have seen my father create this business single-handedly, which was the inspiration for me to take his success one step further. Together, we have grown manifold increasing our turnover to INR 200 crore. - Umang Agarwal
Umang Agarwal and his father Subhash Agarwal's steel trading company, Kaushalesh Steels has achieved several awards and praises like the Agrasen Ratna in the year 2015. Umang recalls that his father started the business with an initial seed capital of just INR 2 lakhs and gradually scaled it to yield a turnover of nearly INR 2.5 crore in a few years. He shares, “Together we have taken the business from a strong position to one that is stellar. We deal with large infrastructure and real estate companies in Bengaluru. We have worked on the metro works and bridges, apart from many other infrastructural projects in Bengaluru. I have seen my father create this business single-handedly, which was the inspiration for me to take his success one step further. Together, we have grown manifold increasing our turnover to INR 200 crore.”
On trusting and letting go
Ranjeet Singh Gulati started Cutting EDGE in the year 1994. Since its inception, the company has established itself as a distinguished service provider in the kitchenware industry. His son Kirpa Singh Gulati was next in line for the business and Ranjeet diligently helped his son take over the reins of the business.
Kripa shares, "When I joined the business my dad had a very set philosophy. He believes the Japanese attitude and style for working is the best. He thought that I should work with all aspects of the business before moving forward. This was early on when I decided to join the business. I worked with workers, supervisors. Later when my father was confident that I could take up the business single handedly, he let go completely.”
When I joined the business my dad had a very set philiosophy. When my father was confident that I could take up he business single handedly, he let go completely. - Kripa Singh Gulati
While the story of Kirpa shows that fathers are the true pillars of strength when it comes to guiding their children towards their success, Geeta Handa's experience of working with her father is a classic example of breaking the gender stereotype and patriarchy.
When she took over her father’s fledgling organic animal supplement feed business, Geeta had little experience and faced the seemingly insurmountable challenge of establishing her credibility as a woman entrepreneur. In a short span of time, she earned the trust of her clients and peers in the industry and has established her company, Nature Organics Pvt Ltdas a leading manufacturer of organic animal feed supplements.
She shares, “I was working with my father in the year 1997 when he started the business. Eventually, my father moved awayaway from the business. By 2002 I was at the helm of the business and going out into the market to sell our products.”
Natarajan shares a similar incident where his father urged his sister to never give up on her dreams and to pursue every action with passion. He shares, “My father told my sister that he was unable to sponsor her studies in college and advised her to take a correspondence course and learn stenography. She was hurt but nevertheless took that route. It was the late 60s when my sister got her first job as a Steno and never looked back since then. Today she has completed over 45 years of service. She is a US citizen and travels to many places as part of the US Aid in empowerment of women, works on the aspect of human sanitation and hygiene areas. I’m proud of my sister and forever indebted to my father for showing us the right path."
Ankur Nagar, co-founder of Un-3 consulting ends it on a beautiful note. He says, “My father has always blindly supported me in whatever I wanted to do but at the same time was always aware of what I was doing, whether I need any support of any kind. Emotional support and trust is what I was looking for when I had started my entrepreneurial journey and that's what I constantly receive till date. Thank you. dad, for being there.”
A very Happy Father’s Day!”
Interested in reading similar articles? Check out some of our articles here:
What’s the most courageous thing you have done in your business journey?
Image courtesy: shutterstock.com
Network with SMEs mentioned in this article by clicking on the 'Connect' button on their profile. Natarajan Ramanathan, Jaimin Doshi, Kiran Shah, Umang Agarwal, Subhash Agarwal, Ranjeet Singh Gulati, Kirpa Singh Gulati, Geeta Handa, Ankur Nagar
Disclaimer: This article is based solely on the inputs shared by the featured members. GlobalLinker does not necessarily endorse the views, opinions & facts stated by the member.
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