Can you please brief us about your childhood, your schooling and your family?
I was a good keyboard player and used to participate in several extra curricular activities. I was awarded district and state prizes in Yoga and I was part of a Scout team. But all this changed when I got my first computer. I come from a middle class family. My father is employed in BSNL and my mother is a homemaker.
My schooling..... I completed my 10th standard in Gopalan Higher Secondary School. I joined G.D. Matric Higher Secondary School for my Higher Secondary Education.
VISHNU PRASATH :
Who are your clients?
I run a company called Bright-bridge Infotech Solutions. My clients are in the field of digital advertising. Toshiba was one of my clients. Right now Brooke Bond a leading multi-national company is my main client.
Could you tell us what is the turning point of your life? What made you become an entrepreneur?
Turning point of my life......That is a good question..... Well, I got my first computer when I was 13 years old. Actually it was bought for the whole family. I created my own site spending Rs.500/- and blogged about various electronic products. I was a gadget freak and this helped in writing good reviews about various products.
You said you had 5 employees working under you when you were 15 years old. How did they trust a small teenage kid like you?
Initially it was very hard to rent office space and to hire people as I was very young. My dad too did not believe the cheque for $69 was for me. It was my first pay from a client. After about 5 years in the business, I have currently 75 people working under me.
Kindly tell us about your business.
I do internet marketing. I identify the target audience for a product and help the clients customize their marketing according to their clientele. I write blogs reviewing about various mobile phones, cars, tablets and insurance. My reviews on these products started to come on top in Google search. This was very useful to the users.
What were the reactions of your parents and relatives?
There was a lot of pressure from all sides because they thought I was frittering away my time. I had to convince them to believe in me. They were against me dropping out of school. My teachers too did not encourage my ambition to enter my business full time. I did not have any passion for a particular subject though I was able to score good marks - around 90% to 95% in all my exams.
What is your biggest challenge?
My biggest challenge was dropping out of school and proving myself to others that I can run a successful business. Now my employees' livelihood is dependent on me. So I have to ensure that my company becomes stable.
Who is your Role model and who are your inspiration?
To be frank I don't have any role model because I started doing things by myself. But at different stages of my life, I was inspired by G.D.Naidu, who achieved many things in his life without any formal education.
So according to you, education has no impact on entreneurship?
Yes, If somebody has dedication and thirst for knowledge, then education is not an issue.
Do you want to continue your education?
Yes, I intend to complete my education abroad preferably in US in the area of my interest.
Career, Family, Money can you rank this in the order of highest priority?
Family is first. I do not see my business as money. I see my business as my passion. I love doing what I do and that is why I am doing it. Some 60 - 70 people depend on me for their livelihood. I do not do my business for the money it fetches me.
Behind every successful man there is a woman , so who is behind your success?
Till I dropped out of school or till I made my first cheque nobody really supported me. I would say my parents supported me a lot but they never supported my decision of dropping out of school. They supported me in the sense they allowed me to sit in front of the internet for hours which made my business happen.
What is the message you would like to give to the youth?
The message that I would like to give to the youth is to start looking at entrepreneurship as an alternative to normal employment irrespective of the money you get from it. Money will automatically come to you if you do something wholeheartedly, with complete devotion.
Aleema Amreen (IV ECE) and Nikitha Mathew (IV Civil) interviewed Vishnu Prasath, a teenage entrepreneur who has 75 people working under him.