BharatPe Co-Founder, 23-Year-Old IITian is Youngest Among Richest Self-Made Indians 2021


The IIFL Wealth Hurun India Rich List came out with its latest top 100 wealthiest people in the country and there are quite a few new faces on there. Notably, the youngest person on the list is 23-year-old Shashvat Nakrani. He is the entrepreneur and founder behind the payment platform BharatPe, which he founded in his third year of college. He is among 13 individuals on the list who were born in the 90s who are all considered self-made individuals by the listing entity.

Nakrani co-founded the BharatPe payment gateway with his colleague Ashneer Grover, in 2018. Keep in mind that he had only joined the In Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi in 2015. In just 2 years he established his very own company, which has gone on to give competition to the likes of Paytm and PhonePe and other payment gateway platforms in India.

Nakrani, who was part of the 2015 batch of IIT Delhi, got his bachelor’s degree in Textile Technology. Hailing from Bhavnagar, India, this young entrepreneur has come a long way. During his third year, he had identified a large gap in the market, the presence of a payment gateway that was accessible to merchants that did not cut into their margins.

He went on to figure out a solution that would help these merchants by leveraging the Unified Payments Interface’s (UPI) star feature – interoperability. This was largely ignored by the closed ecosystems of payments companies back then. It was only in October of 2020 that the Reserve Bank of India stepped in with a mandate that required the payment companies to shift to interoperable QR codes by March 31, 2022.

Nakrani’s solution was unique as it allowed merchants to just use one QR code that would be used to conduct transactions for any other payment app as well. This level of commercial compatibility and innovation is one of the reasons behind this young businessman’s success in the industry.

It should be noted that the company has also seen great success since its establishment. BharatPe has so far partnered with other non-banking financial companies (NBFCs), which were approved by the RBI, in order to launch the 12 per cent club. This is a first-of-its-kind investment, consumer lending and borrowing platform in app form. Through this app, customers will be able to invest and earn up to 12 per cent of annual interest without a lock-in period, hence the name.

The company has a revenue model that depends on providing its customers with a digital payment platform. It also has a separate app for its merchant partners. The company mainly counts on the interdependent cyclical connection of credit to merchants and application usage to boost the revenue from its platform. As of today, the company stands as the fourth largest UPI provider after Google Pay, PhonePe and Paytm.

Speaking on the launch of the new list, Karan Bhagat, Founder, MD and CEO of IIFL Wealth said, “The rising wealth creation documented in IIFL Wealth Hurun India Rich List 2021 is a reflection of the robust foundation of the Indian businesses and the confidence they command from their respective stakeholders. Key facts from the list that stand out for us are the rise of women wealth creators, the reduction in average age, and the inclusion of Tier 2 cities such as Pune, Rajkot, Surat, Faridabad and Ludhiana in the top 20. For us at IIFL Wealth, these factors are already translating into newer solutions and strategies around the wealth management business.”

Anas Rahman Junaid, MD and Chief Researcher of Hurun India added, “Hurun Report’s mission is promoting entrepreneurship through its lists and research. The stories of the people from the IIFL Wealth Hurun India Rich List tell the story of the Indian economy. Hurun India has managed to bring the cut-off of the Hurun India Rich List down to 1,000 Cr from 1,800 Cr ten years ago. This enables Hurun India to tell exciting stories about local heroes from smaller cities and towns -stories that might otherwise get missed.”

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