Inspiring Journey of Ruchi Kalra and Asish Mohapatra: From Rejection to Building Rs 52000 Crore Business

Power couples are not just a thing in movies, but they exist in real life and their success stories can serve as a beacon of inspiration for many aspiring entrepreneurs. One such extraordinary tale of perseverance and triumph is that of Ruchi Kalra, who, along with her husband Asish Mohapatra, has emerged as one of India’s most successful start-up founders.

Ruchi Kalra, a name associated with success and innovation, is the co-founder of two companies that have reached the impressive milestone of becoming unicorns. For those unfamiliar, a unicorn company is privately held and valued at over $1 billion. Achieving this status with one company is a significant feat, but Kalra and Mohapatra have done it twice, showcasing their exceptional business acumen and relentless drive.

Ruchi Kalra’s journey began with a strong academic foundation. She completed her Bachelor of Technology (B-Tech) from the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi, followed by an MBA from the Indian School of Business (ISB). These premier institutions honed her analytical skills and strategic thinking, shaping her path towards entrepreneurship. Post her academic endeavors, Kalra worked at McKinsey & Company for over eight years, where she gathered valuable insights into business operations and strategy.

In 2015, Kalra decided to venture into the start-up ecosystem, co-founding OfBusiness with her husband Asish Mohapatra. OfBusiness is a B2B platform that provides raw materials and industrial supplies, playing a vital role in the supply chain of numerous industries. Over the years, OfBusiness has grown exponentially, achieving a staggering valuation of Rs 44,000 crore. This platform not only facilitates procurement but also seeks to optimize the entire process, thereby creating significant efficiencies for its clients.

Parallel to the growth of OfBusiness, Ruchi Kalra co-founded Oxyzo Financial Services in 2017, serving as its CEO. Oxyzo operates as the lending arm of OfBusiness, offering financial services to those purchasing products from their platform. The focus on providing business loans, especially to small and medium enterprises, has addressed a critical gap in the market. In a significant milestone, Oxyzo raised $200 million at a valuation of $1 billion (approximately Rs 8,200 crore), making Ruchi and Asish the first couple in India to own two unicorns.

Kalra’s business philosophy is straightforward yet effective—extract profit from every transaction. This principle has guided both OfBusiness and Oxyzo, resulting in substantial revenue and profit growth.

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. For instance, during the financial year 2021, Oxyzo’s revenue stood at Rs 197.53 crore. This figure saw a remarkable increase to Rs 312.97 crore the following year, with profits soaring to Rs 60.34 crore in the fiscal year 2021-2022, up from Rs 39.94 crore the year before.

OfBusiness has also showcased impressive financial performance. The company was valued at Rs 7,269 crore in FY-22, with a profit after tax of Rs 125.63 crore. This growth trajectory underlines the effectiveness of their business strategies and operational excellence.

However, the journey to this pinnacle of success was not without its challenges. In a 2016 interview, Kalra disclosed that their initial business idea was rejected by 73 investors. This phase was undoubtedly testing, but their unyielding resolve paid off. They required just one investor to believe in their vision, and the rest, as they say, is history.

The combined valuation of their two unicorns now stands at an awe-inspiring Rs 52,000 crore. Ruchi Kalra’s personal net worth was reported to be around Rs 2,600 crore in 2022, a testament to her incredible success and the impact she has made in the start-up ecosystem.

The story of Ruchi Kalra and Asish Mohapatra is a powerful example of resilience, innovation, and partnership. Their achievements redefine the benchmarks of success in the entrepreneurial world, proving that with vision and determination, even the most daunting challenges can be transformed into opportunities.