Ratan Tata backs healthcare startup founded by teenager

By Joseph Rai

  • 08 May 2020
Credit: Reuters

Ratan Tata, chairman emeritus of Tata Sons, has invested in healthcare startup Generic Aadhaar founded by an 18-year-old.

Generic Aadhaar, launched last year by chief executive Arjun Deshpande, says it follows a pharmacy-aggregator business model by sourcing generic drugs directly from manufacturers and providing it to retailers. This helps reduce cost by up to 80%, it added.

The startup currently sources medicines from facilities in Palghar, Ahmedabad, Pondicherry (or Puducherry) and Nagpur. It offers branded, generic, homoeopathy, and ayurvedic medicines. 

The firm has partnered 30 retailers from Mumbai, Pune, Bengaluru and Odisha following a profit-sharing model.

Deshpande had started on this project at the age of 16 with an initial investment of Rs 15 lakh from his family. 

The startup said it has an annual revenue of Rs 6 crore and aims to clock Rs 150-200 crore in the next three years.

Tata has been actively investing in startups after he quit as chairman of Tata Sons in 2012.

He has mostly invested through RNT Associates Pvt. Ltd, a Mumbai-based company that takes its name from his initials. The investments include several high-profile startups such as digital payments firm Paytm, eyewear e-tailer Lenskart, furniture e-tailer Urban Ladder, cab aggregator Ola and Chinese mobile handset manufacturer Xiaomi.

*A previous version of this report incorrectly stated that Arjun Deshpande had received the Thiel Fellowship.

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