Top Bootstrapped Companies in India


Last updated on April 19, 2024

As the most populous country in the world, India holds a prominent position in the startup ecosystem. It may not be obvious on the surface but the vast majority of mom and pop stores and retail oriented businesses are run like startups. It is no wonder then that some of these companies eventually made it to the upper echelons in the corporate world. In this article, we list the top bootstrapped companies in India and chronicle their journey from the beginning.

Top Bootstrapped Companies in India

While there is no universally accepted definition, a bootstrapped company is generally viewed as a self-financing business that doesn’t dilute equity. External funding may come in the form of loans and monetary support from family and friends but such funding is usually returned and doesn’t impact the entrepreneur’s control on the business. Another common characteristic is that bootstrapped ventures are founded by first-generation entrepreneurs.

Given the considerable constraints faced by these bootstrappers in navigating the challenges of starting and scaling a business without external financial support, these ventures essentially demonstrate resilience, creativity, and entrepreneurial spirit. A wide majority of bootstrapped companies are found in traditional, non-tech industries such as FMCG, Pharmaceuticals, Construction and Engineering, and others but this scenario is rapidly changing as we will read in this article.

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List of Top Bootstrapped Companies in India

CompanyHeadquartersValue (INR Cr)Change (%)
Serum Institute of IndiaPune1,92,300(12.5)
Megha Engineering and InfrastructureHyderabad67,50022.1
Zoho CorporationChennai65,70034.4
Parle ProductsMumbai59,400(5.1)
Macleods PharmaceuticalsMumbai41,700(3.5)
Inox Air ProductsMumbai35,00059.1
Godrej & Boyce Manufacturing CompanyMumbai26,20015.9
Source: Hurun Research Institute, 2023 Burgundy Private Hurun India 500

#1 Serum Institute of India – Biggest Among Top Bootstrapped Companies in India


Established in 1966, Serum Institute of India is the largest vaccine producer in the world and the ninth-largest unlisted companies in India. The Institute is a production company currently run by Adar Poonawalla and manufactures and sells a range of diseases, vaccinations, and immunizations, including polio, diphtheria, and tetanus pertussis , hib, BCG, and r-hepatitis B, measles, mumps, and rubella, somalin, and COVID-19 immunizations.

Several studies show that Institute vaccination reaches nearly 66 percent of all children globally, and nearly 98 percent of all children newborn in India due to vaccination are immunized. Vaccination is super helpful in obtaining Institute vaccines, which is why, more notably, it is the most extensive business in India.

#2 Megha Engineering – Emerging Star Among Bootstrapped Companies in India

Megha Engineering and Infrastructure

Established in 1989, Megha Engineering & Infrastructures (MEIL) stands as a prominent infrastructure firm based in Hyderabad. Over the years, the company has delivered a multitude of projects across verticals including Hydrocarbons, Transportation, Power, Irrigation, and Drinking Water.

The company has established its footprint in over 24 states in India and 24 countries globally. Approximately 80% of MEIL’s revenue is derived from the EPC segment.

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#3 Zoho Corporation – Redefining Business Software Solutions

Zoho Corporation

Zoho Corporation is a multinational technology company widely recognized for computer software and web-based business tools. It rose to prominence with its flagship product, the Zoho Office Suite, an online office suite. Founded in 1996 by Sridhar Vembu and Tony Thomas, the company has evolved into a giant, employing over 15,000. The company operates in seven locations, with its global headquarters located in Chennai, Tamil Nadu and corporate headquarters outside Austin in Del Valle, Texas.

In March 2023, Zoho entered into a partnership with Payoneer, a financial technology company that streamlines transactions for businesses. In April 2023, Zoho unveiled Trident, a novel collaboration platform enabling communication across multiple channels, such as email, messages, and audio/video calls. Furthermore, the company announced a partnership with StartupSouth aimed at empowering startups.

#4 Parle Products – Heritage in FMCG Excellence

Parle Products 2023

Parle Products is a prominent player in the Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) sector and often pops up as the first name when it comes to biscuits. Interestingly, it also holds the distinction of being one of the earliest companies on the list of the largest unlisted companies.

Established in 1929 by Mohanlal Dayal Chauhan, the company started as a manufacturer of candies and other confectionary items before shifting to biscuits in 1939. Parle initially catered exclusively to the needs of the British Army and it was only in 1947 that the company pitted its Parle-G biscuit to masses as an alternative to British brands. According to a report by Nielsen, Parle-G achieved the distinction of being the world’s top-selling biscuit brand in 2020.

Today, the group has expanded beyond biscuits and has organized its business under three companies – Parle Products, Parle Agro, and Parle Bisleri.

#5 Zerodha – Revolutionizing Trading in India


Zerodha was founded in 2010 in Bangalore by Nithin Kamath and Nikhil Kamath. The company revolutionized stock broking through its discount model and easy-to-use apps. It offers trading services in the NSE, BSE, and MCX exchanges across equity, currency, and commodity segments and charges a flat fee of INR 20 per order, irrespective of the order size. Zerodha operates over 120 partner offices and branches across India.

Zerodha serves its customers through a range of innovative mobile apps, including Zerodha Kite, Zerodha Coin, and Zerodha Varsity. As per the latest available data, the company has a customer base of around 12 million (1.2 crores) users and has over 1,000 employees.

#6 Macleods Pharmaceuticals

Macleods Pharmaceuticals

Established in 1989, Macleods Pharmaceuticals is recognized for its specialization in anti-infectives, cardiovascular, anti-diabetic, dermatology, and hormone treatment medications. The company boasts of vertically integrated operations and has grown at an average rate of over 84% in terms of volume over the past 5 years.

Fueling this growth has been a combination of diversified product portfolio, geographic expansion and innovation. As of 2024, the company has presence in over 170 countries across developed and emerging markets in North America, Europe, Africa, Asia, South America, and the CIS region. Macleods also has over 70 approvals with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Macleods Pharmaceuticals holds a significant market presence with WHO-pre-qualified medicines utilized in treating HIV/AIDS, Malaria, Tuberculosis (TB), and opportunistic infections.

#7 Inox Air Products

Inox Air Products

Originally setup as Industrial Oxygen Company Private Limited in 1963, it got rechristened as INOX Air Products in 1999 following a joint venture with Air Products & Chemicals of USA. Over the years, the company has evolved into a leading player in industrial and medical gases and currently operates from 45 locations in India.

According to latest statistics, its manufacturing capacity stands in excess of 3,150 tonnes per day (TPD) of liquid gases. The company’s future expansion strategy aims to boost its total liquid gas production capacity to 4,800 TPD.

#8 Amalgamations Group – A Legacy of Technological Advancement


With its history dating back to pre-independent India, the Amalgamations Group is among the oldest bootstrapped companies in this list. The group primarily focuses on auto component manufacturing and specializes in engines and engine parts, transmission parts, batteries, and instrumentation.

The group’s first venture, India Pistons Ltd., was established to manufacture auto components in Chennai. Today, the group encompasses 47 companies, operates 50 manufacturing plants, and employs over 15,000 employees. The crown jewel of the group is Tractors & Farm Equipment Ltd (TAFE) which is one of the prominent agri tractor manufacturers in India.

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#9 Godrej & Boyce Manufacturing Company

Godrej & Boyce

Established in 1897, Godrej & Boyce Manufacturing Company is another veteran in the list of top bootstrapped companies in India. The company has varied interests in the fields of construction, engineering, consumer durables, aerospace, defense, logistics, technology, healthcare, tooling, process equipment, material handling, locking, and storage solutions.

Godrej & Boyce is the flagship company of the Godrej Group and it is therefore not really a surprise that the company has thrived without external funding. The company had revenues surpassing INR 14,796 crore and employed over 15,000 individuals in FY 2023.

#10 GamesKraft – Newest Entry in Biggest Bootstrapped Companies in India


Incorporated in 2017, Gameskraft operates in the online gaming industry, providing skill-based gaming platforms for both computer and mobile games. The company offers a variety of gaming platforms, including Rummy Culture, Gamezy, and Pocket52, catering to casual gaming, fantasy sports, poker, and fantasy league cricket games.

Gameskraft has demonstrated remarkable growth, reporting an annual revenue of USD 340 million as of 31 March 2023. As of September 2023, the company employs 519 individuals and is affiliated with legal entities such as Kworks Technologies Private Limited and Gameskraft Technologies Private Limited.


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