Asians on the Forbes 30 Under 30 List 2015

Young and remarkable Asians share the honour of being named Forbes’ 30 Under 30 of 2015, among the likes of Ed Sheeran and Keira Knightley.

Young and remarkable Asians share the honour of being named Forbes’ 30 Under 30 of 2015

“The list celebrates the most extraordinary individuals under the age of 30 across the globe.”

South Asian high achievers have joined the ranks of alumni Mark Zuckerberg and Jennifer Lawrence in making the Forbes ‘30 Under 30’ list.

In its fourth year running, the list celebrates the most revolutionary thinkers and extraordinary individuals under the age of 30 across the globe.

A total of 600 millennials, including Cristiano Ronaldo and Emma Watson, have been chosen to represent the class of 2015.

Innovators and young leaders with an Asian background or origin have taken their seats in a stunning 16 out of 20 listed categories.

Deepika KurupCompiled by three accomplished leaders from each of the categories or industries, the list also welcomes submissions from the general public and from voting via social media.

These bright Asian youths defy the adage that ‘life begins at 30’. Of them include Eran Hodis, an MD-PhD student at the Harvard-MIT Program, made a revolutionary discovery in the quest to find a cure for cancer, when his mother was diagnosed with the disease.

The youngest achiever on the list is 16-year-old inventor Deepika Kurup. She created a solar-powered jug to purify water. The teenager is also the US winner of the 2014 Stockholm Junior Water Prize.

Nikhil Nirmel is the founder of Lawdingo, a company which created a network of 2,000 lawyers who help people who cannot afford the services of conventional law firms.

Social entrepreneur Fiza Farhan is the co-founder and CEO of the Buksh Foundation. Her ambitions include empowering women entrepreneurs and introducing formal energy and clean energy projects to all of Pakistan.

Fiza FarhanThe Marketing and Advertising category includes two Asians.

Shama Hyder, is the founder of the Marketing Zen Group a best-selling author of the The Zen of Social Media Marketing. She is also an international keynote speaker.

Asha Sharma is the Chief Marketing Officer at Porch, a company which helps you build the ideal home by providing a network of home improvement professionals.

In the consumer tech category, Ankur Jain, the co-founder of the app Humin and founder of the Kairos Society, makes the list. The Wharton alumni is the son of Indian billionaire Naveen Jain.

Here are some of the Asians that feature on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 List for 2015:

Venture Capital

  • Shivon Zilisco-founder of Bloomberg Beta
  • Nikhil Basu Trivedi senior associate at Shasta Ventures, founded three start-ups before leaving Princeton University
  • Gaurav Jain ~ founder of Founder Collective
  • Chetan Puttaguntapartner at New Enterprise Associates
  • Arun Mathew ~ principal at Accel Partners
  • Neil Chheda and Krishna Gupta ~ co-founders of Romulus Capital
  • Nitesh Banta ~ founder of Summer Workation and co-founder of Rough Draft Ventures

Consumer Tech

  • Ankur Jain ~ co-founder of the app Humin and founder of the Kairos Society
  • Rand Hindi ~ a French-Lebanese coding genius who created the app Snips
  • Rujul Zaparde ~ dropped out of Ivy League to co-found FlightCar
  • Jason Shah ~ founder of business meeting app
  • Umang Dua ~ founder of home cleaning service Handybook

Social Entrepreneurs

  • Fiza Farhan ~ co-founder & CEO of Buksh Foundation
  • Minhaj Chowdhury ~ co-founder of Drinkwell
  • Gayatri Datar ~ co-founder of EarthEnable

Enterprise Tech

  • Vinith Misra ~ engineer at IBM Watson
  • Vivek Ravisankar ~ co-founder of HackerRank
  • Ishaan Gulrajani ~ co-organised HackMIT 2014

Retail and Ecommerce

  • Deepa Gandhi ~ co-founder of Dagne Dover
  • Neil Parikh ~ co-founder of Casper
  • Aman Advani and Gihan Amarasiriwardena ~ co-founders of Ministry of Supply


  • Aarti Kapoor ~ co-founder of Moelis & Company
  • Sudar Purushothaman ~ Director at Fundamental Credit Opportunities
  • Brij Khurana ~ Vice President of PIMCO
  • Ali Khan ~ co-portfolio manager at Fidelity Investments


  • Deepika Kurup ~ a 16-year-old inventor
  • Shyam Gollakota ~ inventor of charging sensor for smartphones
  • Tejas Shastry ~ co-founder of Ampy, a self-charging wearable battery
  • Anish Harsh Thakkar ~ co-founder of Greenlight Planet

Law and Policy

  • Rahul Rekhi ~ a 23-year-old advisor to the chief medical officer for the UK Department of Health
  • Nikhil Nirmel ~ founder of Lawdingo
  • Joy Basu ~ JD-MBA (Juris Doctor and MBA) candidate at Stanford University
  • Ali Zaidi ~ energy policy advisor to the White House
  • Niraj Antani ~ Ohio House of Representative
  • Vikrum Aiyer ~ Deputy Chief of Staff for the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property


  • Nikhil Agarwal ~ assistant professor at MIT
  • Nicole McNeer ~ resident paediatric physician at Yale University
  • Neha Kinariwalla ~ founder of the Humanology Project


  • Ishveen Anand ~ founder of Open Sponsorship
  • Uzma Rawn ~ Vice President of Corporate Partnerships at Premier Partnerships

Marketing and Advertising

  • Shama Hyder ~ founder of the Marketing Zen Group
  • Asha Sharma ~ Chief Marketing Officer at Porch


  • Vijay Chudasama ~ co-founder of Thiologics
  • Eran Hodis ~ an MD-PhD student at Harvard-MIT Program

Food and Drink

  • Apoorva Mehta ~ founder of Instacart, the fastest-growing grocery delivery service in the US

Manufacturing and Industry

  • Partha Unnava ~ CEO of Better Walk, who make crutches that do not hurt people’s armpits

Hollywood and Entertainment

  • Avinash Gandhi ~ an agent for talent agency William Morris Endeavour


  • Vinit Sukhija ~ manager of Social Entrepreneurship & Innovation Initiative at Teach For America

While Forbes’ annual list is not definitive, it gives a very good indication to what our future beholds in the hands of young talents and visionaries filled with passion and hunger for success.

Though the 2015 list has been dominated by white males, the promising potential of Desi achievers should not go unnoticed.

DESIblitz congratulates everyone who made the 2015 list!

Scarlett is an avid writer and pianist. Originally from Hong Kong, egg tart is her cure for homesickness. She loves music and film, enjoys travelling and watching sports. Her motto is “Take a leap, chase your dream, eat more cream.”

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