Entrepreneurial Spirit Of CCD Founder V. G. Siddhartha: 7 Interesting Facts You Should Know
Two days ago, we received the news that CCD’s founder VG Siddhartha went missing, and soon after, the unfortunate news hit. The founder of the largest coffee empire in India is no longer amongst us.
To commemorate one of the most renowned entrepreneurs from India, here are 7 interesting facts that you should know about VG Siddhartha and his famed entrepreneurial spirit:
VG Siddhartha’s Family & Legacy Of Coffee Business
His family in Chikkamagaluru district of Karnataka owned about 350 acres of coffee estate, and they had a 130-year old legacy in the coffee business. But instead of joining the family business, he aimed to become an investor and start his own business. His family supported him, at every step.
VG Siddhartha Aimed For The Army
He initially had plans to join the army, and had appeared for the entrance exam of the NDA (National Defense Academy), but did not make it. He was also a part of the National Cadet Corps, and after that, he was sure that serving the nation was what would truly make him happy.
Siddhartha’s Adventures In Mumbai
He wasn’t scared of the cheap hotels in Mumbai, but elevators intimidated him! Despite his father not being very happy about it, Siddhartha traveled to Mumbai to learn about stocks and trading from Mahendrabhai Kampani, about whom he had read about in an investment magazine, and considered his Guru.
In the initial days, he lived in a cheap hotel in Mumbai’s Fort area, costing Rs 120 per day. He first met Mahendrabhai Kampani, he climbed six flights of stairs because he wasn’t familiar with escalators.
He is said to have been ‘intimidated’ by two elevators in the tall building.
Siddhartha’s Entrepreneurial Insights
His father was initially against setting up a business, but supported Siddhartha when he asked for help.
In 1985, his father gave him 7.5 lakh as capital to set up a new business, assured that his business would not work out.
His father’s words, to be exact, were, “When you lose it, you can come home!” To make sure that his father’s money didn’t go down the drain, Siddhartha invested 5 lakh in a plot, and invested the rest in stocks.
If all didn’t go as planned, the price of the property would definitely go up to Rs 7.5 lakh and this he would use to repay his father’s money. His backup plans definitely show that he had entrepreneurial skills in him.
Infosys and Mindtree
Infosys, back in 1993, was not getting a satisfactory response to its IPO on the popular Dalal Street, and it was VG Siddhartha, along with two others who stepped up to help, and underwrote a considerable amount. The future saw Siddhartha invest in Mindtree and make a massive Rs. 300 crore out of it.
CCD and Its Success
He laid the first brick of Cafe Coffee Day in 1993, and as of now, CCD has grown up to be India’s largest coffee chain. There are around 1700+ cafes, 60,000 vending machines, 532 kiosks and 403 ground coffee selling outlets across 6 nations. As per reports, CCD serves as much as 1.8 billion cups of coffee a year across six countries.
Through his ventures, Siddhartha provided employment to about 50,000 people across India, and single-handedly created India’s biggest coffee empire.
Siddhartha married the daughter of the former Chief Minister of Karnataka, Indian Minister for External Affairs and Governor of Maharashtra. The couple has two sons, Ishaan and Amartya.
Doing business in India is not an easy task, and unfortunately, he succumbed to the messier-than-it-looks state of affairs.