Ritesh Agarwal

Founder & CEO (Group)

OYO Hotels & Homes

OYO Hotels & Homes was founded by 26-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 safe, hygienic
and comfortable living space, irrespective of their budget. 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
Recognition:
● 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.

Brief Profile:
Ritesh Agarwal is a young entrepreneur and the founder and CEO of OYO Hotels & Homes.
He believes that everyone deserves a safe hygienic and comfortable living space,

irrespective of their budget and founded OYO in India in 2013 to achieve this aim. Today the
unicorn start-up is India's largest hotel chain and is present in over 800 cities across 80
countries. OYO is backed by leading investors, including the SoftBank Vision Fund, Sequoia
Capital, Lightspeed Ventures, Hero Enterprise, and China Lodging Group, amongst others.
Ritesh was the first Asian resident to be accepted to the Thiel Fellowship. He is a Co-
Chairman of the Confederation of Indian Industry National Committee on Tourism &
Hospitality.

About OYO Hotels & Homes:
Opening its doors in 2013, OYO Hotels & Homes, a young hotel startup, today is the world’s
leading chain of hotels and homes. The portfolio combines fully operated real estate
comprising more than 43,000 hotels with over 1 million rooms. Through its vacation homes
business, the company offers travellers and city dwellers access to over 130,000 homes
around the world under OYO Home, Belvilla, Danland, Dancenter and Germany-based
Traum-Ferienwohnungen brands. OYO today operates in over 800 cities in 80 countries,
including the U.S., Europe, U.K., India, Middle East, Southeast Asia, and Japan.
OYO is backed by leading investors, including the SoftBank Vision Fund, Sequoia Capital,
Lightspeed Ventures, Hero Enterprise, and China Lodging Group, amongst others.
At an organisation level, OYO has received several notable awards & recognitions, a
selection of which include:

● IAMAI India Digital Awards - Travel Tech (2018)
● Hotelier India Awards (2017)
● National Entrepreneurship Awards - Hospitality Category (2017)
● India’s Most Promising Hotel Network, HolidayIQ Better Holiday Awards 2017
● Digital Startup of the Year at IAMAI India Digital Awards (2016)
● Startup of the Year- Express IT Award (2015)
● #2 in BT Coolest Start-ups Survey 2016
● CX Innovation of the Year at Quest CX Awards 2017
● OneDirect Quest CX Award for Best Use of Social Media (2016)
● LinkedIn has recognized OYO as one of the top employee attractors in India three
years in a row (2016, 2017, 2018, 2019)
● Startup of the Year at The Economic Times Startup Awards (2018)
● LinkedIn’s Top Startups in India (2018, 2019) - First ranking
● TiE's QGlue Design-led Entrepreneurship Awards (2018)
● Best Travel Startup - Jury at Zee Business Travel Awards (2018)
● Fast Company: OYO among Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in India (2018)
● Best Startup - SATTE Awards 2019

● The Diamond SABRE Awards For Excellence In The C-Suite - Company of the Year -
OYO (2019)
● Market Entrant of the Year at the UK-India Awards 2019 (2019)
● Achievement Award at 4 th ASEAN-India Excellence and Achievement Award (2019)

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