Although the Indian corporate terrain boasts of several A-listers, most of them did have a good foundation to begin with. Only a rare few began from scratch and have displayed class and acumen throughout their journey to success. A decade back, a young magnetic persona entered this genre of individuals presenting rare savoir-faire and round up laurels. Dr Vivek Bindra is an ordinary gentleman, really; but he is someone who found the strength to persevere and endure despite overwhelming obstacles. From quite young, he learned that life does not get easier or more forgiving, we get stronger and more resilient. Growing up, Dr Vivek did not have life on a silver platter. Instead, he had a difficult childhood and growing up years.
He lost his father at quite a young age and grew up with his grandparents. Due to old age, they too passed away, and Dr Vivek was raised by different relatives, living a not so stable life. Thanks to the help of a kind neighbour, he was admitted to St. Xavier’s school, one of the best schools in Delhi and was able to get a good schooling experience. Just because he went to a good school does not mean he had it easy, several instances put him down, but thanks to his love of sports, he always bounced back after every setback. He also turned to self-help books to shape a better personality for himself. He knew the importance of education and excelled at it, managing to get land seats at 4 International Universities for MBA. Unfortunately, due to insufficient funds, he could not pursue it further. Undeterred, he worked odd jobs and sold dictionaries at traffic signals to collect enough money to pursue an MBA from International Business from Amity Business School.
Work Well with What You Got
Unlike his peers, he was aware of how little resources he had, and although this did lead up to several humiliating situations, nothing could prevent him from dreaming big. He devoted a considerable chunk of his time for self-learning; reading all sorts of books and building up is knowledge base, one page at a time. “My experiences helped shape the person I am and craft a leader out of me. A major turnaround came in my life when I read “Srimad Bhagavad Gita”. It became the motivational philosophy of my life and led me to join ISKCON and become a monk. I spent four years as a monk, searching for answers and learning about life. Finally, in 2010 with the blessings of my spiritual guru, I stepped out of the monk life and entered the career of a motivational speaker and business trainer,” says Dr Vivek Bindra.
In 2010, Dr Vivek marked his first step towards his entrepreneurial journey with Global ACT. The company worked as a corporate training partner with leading corporate houses. Soon, Dr Vivek became a trusted advisor to over 1500 corporates. He was awarded as the “Best Corporate Trainer” by Maruti Suzuki, for three consecutive years. He also etched another significant milestone with the creation of his Leadership Development Program called ‘Leadership Funnel’ that trained entrepreneurs, businesspersons and organizational leaders in business leadership and management skills.
The Birth of a ‘Bada’ Idea
In 2019, he decided to expand the scope of his business training programmes to reach the least common denominator in entrepreneurship. After all, management education should not just be the preserve of a select few people. In a country where small businesses are the largest employment creator, he found a glaring lack of business skilling and mentoring solutions for small business owners and wantrepreneurs, particularly in small and semi-urban towns. This thought led him to rechristen his entrepreneurial venture as ‘Bada Business Pvt. Ltd’ with a new model and goal.
The objective was to create an alternative business education model that would be affordable and accessible to everyone, such that anyone from a lower-middle-class background in a small town can access it and learn valuable business management skills. To realize this, he created a two-year management program condensing into it the course materials of all leading global MBA Institutions, albeit in vernacular languages. Thus in 2019, Bada Business took its first steps to garner a not so baby revenue of over Rs 60 crore in its first financial year itself. In January 2021 Bada Business touched the Rs 100 crore revenue mark.
Founder and CEO of Bada Business, Dr Vivek Bindra shaped the company as an EdTech platform offering digital educational courses and business lessons to arm small entrepreneurs and wantrepreneurs with the requisite knowledge and skills to startups and run businesses effectively. The organization is unique as it is the first such EdTech platform to create a category of business learning services for small entrepreneurs. Bada Business offers a series of digital business learning courses ranging from 2 months to 2 years. The courses are created specifically to help SMEs and MSMEs find solutions to their businesses’ burning problems in a comfortable, practical and implementable way by using frameworks, case studies, and proven techniques relevant to the Indian market.
Bada Business has also partnered 75 top business leaders of different sectors and industries and brought them on board as ‘professors. These ‘professors’ offer valuable business learnings to students based on their first-hand experiences and knowledge through video lessons. Some of these professors are none other than Ms Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, T V Mohandas Pai, Alfred Ford, Manu Jain, and Arvind Lal, to name a few. The organization has also started an Independent Business Consultant Model under which the organization supports entrepreneurs on the ground, by training and mentoring them to create their own businesses. 5500 IBCs have already been piloted, and the organization is now aiming to take this number to 125,000 IBCs.
“While working as a business trainer with a series of top corporate houses for several years, I realized that while there was no dearth of business training facilities for large organizations, SMEs and MSMEs hardly had access to modern business training resources. Even though this sector forms the backbone of the Indian economy, their need for business skill training remained largely unfulfilled. This was when I decided to turn my attention to create a first of its kind Ed-Tech platform, particularly for the MSME sector,” Dr Vivek explains.
In April 2020, when the country’s pandemic panic was at an all-time high, he launched ‘India Revival Mission’ that offered business training and hand-holding solutions to millions of SMEs, helping them strategize post COVID business models. The initiative trained 10 million people – entrepreneurs, students and self-employed individuals, and impacted as many as 50 million lives. Today, his YouTube channel is one of the world’s most subscribed entrepreneurship channel with close to 14.9 million subscribers and 700 million viewership. With over 38 lakh followers on Facebook, is it any surprise that ‘India Revival Mission, bagged 5 Guinness World Records? It also put India’s EdTech sector on the global map.
Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
Dr Vivek iterates that all this was possible because he had an equally talented team to back him up. “My team enjoy complete freedom and support when it comes to ideation and problem-solving. As a tech-centred company, it is important to institute strong monitoring and accountability mechanisms to ensure that productivity and efficiency remain high. Moreover, the team’s focus should be on identifying people’s problems and solving them. ‘Thinking as the consumer’ is how we operate. As long as you continue to offer commendable solutions to problems, your organization will continue to grow,” adds Dr Vivek.
A technopreneur, Dr Vivek observes that AI and VR are expected to affect education technology and online education. He further says that through Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, we are set to see an increasing shift towards immersive learning. “Use of data analytics and machine learning to improve learning experiences is another emerging trend for 2021. Similarly, gamification is another markedly noticeable trend,” says Dr Vivek.
With an aggressive and detailed expansion plan for Bada Business, Dr Vivek expects the company to grow leaps and bounds in the next 2-3 years. He also aims to double the company’s branch offices across India from the current 75 to 150 and establish its presence in most Tier II and III cities and smaller towns where a bulk of small entrepreneurs are based. Bootstrapped initially, the startup is now also in active talks with multiple VCs to raise funds to finance its next phase of growth. Dr Vivek plans to expand Bada Business beyond India to countries with a similar entrepreneurial environment in the long run. “We aim to become a major global player over the long term and a force to reckon with in the global EdTech space,” he adds.
As someone who took every obstacle, challenge and dilemma into his stride and turning them into golden opportunities, Dr Vivek Bindra is truly a champion of the quote by Marcus Aurelius, “You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.”