The honesty, struggle, and emotional appeal of some stories make an indelible mark on our psyche. The life of Ram Chandra Agarwal is one such amazing tale which shows us that his patience and determination to create a vast empire won over his physical challenges.
Starting with a small photocopy shop, Agarwal went on to revolutionize the retail sector of India. He overcame countless challenges in life besides regaining wealth after getting bankrupt. He has absolutely startled everyone in the business world.
Born in a poverty-stricken family, Ram Chandra Agarwal fell a prey to polio when he was a toddler and lost his ability to walk. Moving on with the help of crutches, every day of his life became a struggle. Constant suport from his family helped him believe in himself and he successfully completed his graduation in 1986. He then opened a photocopy shop with some money he arranged on loan.
After running the shop for a year, Ram Chandra took a shot at opening a retail clothing outlet. He did his market research and set up a garment shop in Lal Bazar, Kolkata. This gave him a good experience in retail business and he successfully managed the shop for the next 15 years. Then, he planned to start a retail business on a larger scale.
In 2001, Ram Chandra Agarwal decided to leave Kolkata and move to Delhi to start his new retail business known as the Vishal Retail. Initially, it was a small outlet but grew bigger by each passing day. In 2002, he became the first one to introduce the Hypermarket concept in India in the form of Vishal Megamart in Delhi. This successful venture enabled the company to emerge as a well-known and popular brand in the surrounding areas.
Gradually, the business kept on increasing and he then opened new Vishal Megamart stores in many nearby cities and the company rolled out an Initial Public Offering (IPO) of Rs 2,000 crores in 2007. Ram Chandra Agarwal was experiencing new heights of success each day. In 2007, he decided to magnify the popularity of Vishal Retail during the stock market rally. He insisted on setting up new facilities in every outlet of the brand. This led on to taking huge loans from the bank.
Unfortunately, in 2008, owing to the steep fall in the stock markets, Vishal Retail suffered a huge loss of Rs 750 crores and the company became bankrupt. Agarwal was forced to sell Vishal Retail to repay the creditors. After a lot of hard work, the deal was finalized in 2011 with Shriram Group.
One can easily understand the massive impact of such catastrophic event on his life. Any normal person will be paralyzed after such a turnaround of events. But surprisingly, Ram Chandra Agarwal did not give up. Instead, he set up a new retail chain called the V2 Retail and once again entered into the world of retail business.
V2 Retail Limited is one of the fastest growing retail companies in India. Presenting a vast range of apparel and non-apparel products, this company has already opened its own outlet in 32 cities in the country. It is providing the latest fashion products at affordable prices. Today, it has become one of the leading retail trading companies in the country.
The success of Ram Chandra Agarwal is not only inspiring but also one in a billion when a person despite having physical disabilities believed in himself and became a star businessman. He built his empire starting from zero not only once, but twice. His life is a lesson for every Indian.