• Mon. May 29th, 2023

Upasana Taku (file photo)

Upasana Taku (file photo)

Upasana Taku was born in Gandhinagar to a Kashmiri family. His parents were teachers.

MobiKwik turned profitable in the March quarter and no one could be happier than Upasana Taku, co-founder and chief operating officer (COO) of the fintech company. Taku expects MobiKwik to be able to become fully profitable and double its revenue to Rs 1,000 crore in the current financial year.

If MobiKwik has inspired millions of start-ups in India, the story of its co-founder is no less motivating. From a Stanford graduate to the founder of a mobile payment company in the country, discover Upasana Taku’s journey here:

Upasana Taku was born in Gandhinagar to a Kashmiri family. His parents were teachers. She completed her education in Surat and decided to pursue engineering studies at NIT Jalandhar.

After that, Taku left to pursue a master’s degree in management science and engineering at Stanford University. There she became interested in entrepreneurship. After graduating from Stanford, Taku worked at HSBC and then at Paypal. But she has always been interested in doing something locally. In 2008, she packed her bags and returned to India.

Taku’s return to India left his parents in shock. They tried to dissuade her from leaving her comfortable life in the United States. Taku was determined to achieve her goals. She worked for a non-governmental organization, Dristhee, at first. In an interview with Business prospects, Taku said, “I liked what they did but not how they did it. NGOs in India are very poorly managed.

In 2008, a few tokens fell into place for Taku’s ambitions. In December 2008, she met Bipin Preet Singh, the man who would co-found MobiKwik with her. Singh was working with a Noida-based chip company at the time and wanted to start an e-wallet business. In August 2009, Singh launched MobiKwik and Taku joined his company a few months later.

Later, Singh and Taku got married.

The couple initially faced difficulties in their efforts to make MobiKwik a success. No bank was ready to offer them a platform, it was difficult to hire employees and funding was low. Taku also faced gender bias as an entrepreneur. But she and Singh managed to defy the odds.

In 2012, Taku created Zaakpay, a subsidiary of One MobiKwik Systems. The platform provides a digital payment gateway for e-commerce businesses.

In 2018, Upasana Taku received an Indian President’s Award for being the first woman to lead a payments startup. She was included in Forbes Asia’s Power 25 Businesswomen list in 2019.

Taku plans to launch a public listing for MobiKwik, but believes the market is not right for a tech company to list at this time, PTI reported. The company was valued at $700 million in a 2021 fundraising.

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