Woman entrepreneur who took BPOs to rural India

In today’s world, where everyone gives priority to their own needs, wants and problems, there do exist some who think beyond themselves and take the initiative to help others while helping themselves. Saloni Malhotra is one such example who started her career by opening BPOs. While it might not be a big deal to start a BPO business, the twist is that she opened them in rural areas of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Her effort is commendable as it has generated employment in these areas.

With an engineering degree from the University of Pune, Maharashtra, Malhotra is the founder of DesiCrew. In today’s modern world when people want things to be done quickly and efficiently, DesiCrew is a one-stop destination that strives to make the functioning of different industries like New Media, IT etc. cost-effective and productive.

According to Saloni, she always wanted to start her own business. After graduation, she worked for an interactive agency while still looking for avenues to implement her ideas. Coincidentally, she came in contact with professor Jhunjhunwala of TeNet group IIT, Madras, who proposed this idea of rural BPOs to Saloni. She then worked towards gaining knowledge about rural BPOs and inaugurated the first BPO in 2007 at Kollumangudi with a staff strength of just four people.

Saloni had to work extremely hard to achieve the success she desired. She faced a lot of problems convincing clients that the BPO will work out and gaining their trust. She shelled out extra investments to ensure that there were no power cuts at all in the offices. When quizzed about the purpose of establishing BPOs in rural areas, Saloni responded that when they enquired, they found out that most BPOs employ people from rural areas, who migrate to cities to work so Saloni took the initiative to take the BPO to rural areas so the workers don’t have to migrate.

Today, DesiCrew is such a huge success that it has given work to around 400 people in rural Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. With four branches in different parts, DesiCrew has won the Udyog Rattan Award in 2013 from the Institute of Economic Studies in New Delhi. Saloni won the distinguished TiE Stree Shakthi Award in 2011 and was nominated in BusinessWeek’s Asia’s Youngest Entrepreneurs and MTV Youth Icon 2008.

Saloni is among a few people in this world who have made a difference in the lives of highly-neglected people. She saw a dream not just for her own self but for hundreds of others who work in DesiCrew. She has earned recognition just not in India but outside the country as well, making India proud.

Sources- DesiCrew, The Hindu and Rediff

Image credit: The Next Women