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Big Billion Startup: The Untold Flipkart Story

Nominated | Book Awards 2020 | English Non-fiction

Big Billion Startup: The Untold Flipkart Story

Author: Mihir Dalal
Publisher: Pan Macmillan

Award Category: English Non-fiction
About the Book: 

IIT graduates Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal founded out of a Bangalore apartment what would become India’s biggest e-commerce startup. Established in October 2007, Flipkart began as an online bookstore and soon came to be known for its ‘customer obsession’. As the startup’s reputation grew, so did its value, with venture capitalists in India and abroad lining up to invest heavily in the company that stood for bold ambition, unabashed consumerism and the virtues of technology.

Investigative journalist Mihir Dalal recounts the astounding story of how the Bansals built Flipkart into a multi-billion-dollar powerhouse in the span of a few years and made internet entrepreneurship a desirable occupation. But it is also a story of big money, power and hubris, as both business and interpersonal complexities weakened the founders’ control over their creation and forced them to sell out to a retailer whose dominance they had once dreamt of emulating. Flipkart’s auction involved some of the corporate world’s biggest names, from Jeff Bezos, Satya Nadella, Sundar Pichai to Masayoshi Son and Doug McMillon, an ironic testimony to the strength of what the Bansals had forged.

Based on extraordinary research, extensive interviews and deep access to key characters in the Flipkart story, Big Billion Startup is the riveting and revealing account of how Sachin and Binny Bansal built and sold India’s largest internet company.


About the Author: 

Mihir Dalal is a journalist with Mint, from where he has covered Flipkart and other internet businesses for more than five years. He previously worked at Reuters and CNBC TV18. He was born and brought up in Bombay and currently lives in Bangalore, where he has spent most of his professional life. Big Billion Startup is his first book.


Review: 

‘Mihir Dalal’s deeply reported telling of the Flipkart story has it all: mercurial founders, avaricious investors and ruthless internet kingpins. Anyone interested in the remarkable history of the company that changed India should read this book’ Brad Stone, bestselling author of The Everything Store and The Upstarts

‘[A] thoroughly gripping narrative … a must-read for every entrepreneur, every employee wishing to work in a start-up’ Business Today

‘A pacey read … captures the twists and turns and all the drama at what has come to be recognised as the poster boy of Indian e-commerce’ Business Standard

‘Dalal’s book will go down as special’ Financial Express

‘A breezy, yet detailed, account of the journey of the e-commerce major and its founders’ Hindu BusinessLine

‘This real story of how two ordinary men struck it big through their wits and efforts makes for thrilling reading’ Moneycontrol

‘A fascinating look at the making of India’s largest e-commerce platform’ TechCrunch

‘Rooted in extensive research and objectivity … [gives] the reader a racy ringside view of a corporate story that went beyond the wildest dreams of its founders’ Week

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