Founder & CEO (Group), OYO Hotels & Homes
OYO Hotels & Homes was founded by 27-year-old Ritesh Agarwal, the first resident Asian to be accepted to the Thiel Fellowship (started by Paypal founder Peter Thiel). Travelling across India at the age of 17, Ritesh stayed in more than 100 bed and breakfasts, guest houses, and hotels to realize there was a massive dearth of affordable and good-quality hotels in the unbranded budget hotel category. With this in mind, he started his entrepreneurial journey by creating a listing platform for budget accommodations, only to conclude that discovery alone will not solve this problem. Ritesh believed that everyone deserves a beautifully designed, chic and comfortable living space. And everyone deserves a better life. He believed that he could change the way people live. He did that by upgrading bland, generic spaces and places and designing them with next-gen chic and design moxie and offering them at varied price points. That’s how OYO was launched in May 2013 (known as OYO Hotels & Homes now). OYO today is the world’s leading chain of hotels and homes.
Today, Ritesh is one of the youngest and most successful founders in the world and has been honoured at several forums, for creating a global disruptor in the form of OYO Hotels & Homes.
Professional Memberships & Associations:
- FICCI Executive Committee Member since 2017
- CII National Council Member since 2018
- Co-Chairman of CII Tourism and Hospitality Committee since 2018
- Chairman CII Ecommerce Committee 2018 – 2020
- Board Member of the MDI
- CNBC’s Young Turk of the Year (2019)
- The Open Republic Achievers Awards – Business New Age category (2019)
- BTVi National Awards for Marketing Excellence: Young Achiever of the year (2019) – Ritesh Agarwal
- BTVi National Awards for Marketing Excellence: CEO of the year (2019) -Ritesh Agarwal
- Forbes Tycoons of Tomorrow List
- EY Entrepreneur of the Year 2018 – Services
- StartAP Entrepreneur of the Year Award (2018)
- Dataquest IT Person of the Year (2018)
- Best Entrepreneur of 2018 by the International Hospitality Council (IHC) (2018)
- GQ India – 50 Most Influential Young Leaders (2016, 2017)
- Real Innovation Awards by London Business School
- Forbes 30 under 30 – Consumer Tech (2016) (Global, India, Asia)
- Fortune 40 under 40 (2016)
- The Economic Times 40 under 40 (2016)
- Asian Centre’s New Age Entrepreneur Award (2017)
- Gaurav Samman by The Government of Haryana (2017)
- NDTV Dream Chaser of the Year (2016)
Ritesh sets the overall strategic vision and direction for the company which has spread its wings across the globe. With its foray into the vacation homes business, OYO today has footprints in more than 800 cities across 80 countries – UK, US, Europe, India, China, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Japan.
fireside chat: thur 26 Nov, 10:00 – 10:30
Tales of a Decacorn: The Importance of a Global Mindset
JPIN Venture Catalyst Ltd founders Nayan Gala and Gaurav Singh are joined by Ritesh Agarwal, the founder of OYO rooms – the world’s fastest growing and India’s largest hotel chain now valued in excess of $10bn. They will discuss the journey Ritesh took to become the youngest founder of a Decacorn and his views on having a strong investment and growth corridor between the UK-India.