ASCENT Foundation, a not-for-profit, peer-to-peer learning platform founded by Harsh Mariwala, Chairman, Marico Ltd, completes 10 years of providing unmatched peer support to entrepreneurs, SME business owners, growth-oriented doers and leaders of tomorrow. Consisting of 840+ members in three chapters across 54 cities in India, ASCENT aims to become a 1000 member cohort by FY23.
ASCENT was founded by Harsh Mariwala, Chairman of Marico, ten years ago with the goal of providing the necessary peer support to business owners and empowering the entrepreneurial ecosystem by enabling the doers with learning, support, motivation and a sense of camaraderie. With the aim to give back to the entrepreneurial ecosystem ASCENT was set up with the aim to support founders and business owners in navigating the challenges of running a business in a dynamically evolving market reality.
Started with a single city chapter, ASCENT has now expanded across India not only to metros but also to other cities including Srinagar, Cooch Behar, Guwahati, Dharwad, Varanasi, Tirupur, Bhuj, Guwahati, Hubli and Mangalore priding itself in maintaining Inclusivity – in terms of different cultures and mindsets across these cities. In 2012, ASCENT started with members whose annual turnover was upto 100cr and is currently hosting members with upto 2500cr annual turnover. The ASCENT Annual Health survey of 2022 showcased that members have witnessed upto 200% increase in revenue with 50% increased efficiency in operations.
Commenting on the occasion, Archanna Das, CEO, ASCENT Foundation said, “It has been an incredible journey for all of us as ASCENT completes a decade of existence. We all are delighted to be a part of an initiative that not only focuses on enriching and empowering entrepreneurs but also aids in the tangible scaling of their enterprise through peer support. In the past decade, ASCENT has become more inclusive in terms of culture and mindsets growing to 54 diverse cities and we aim to achieve greater heights in the near future. We are in the right direction to continue this growth by celebrating diversity in all aspects of businesses with entrepreneurs of the right mindset of willingness to learn.”
The Trust Groups leverage the power of the collective and enable entrepreneurs to share and exchange experiences, ideas, insights and learn from each other in a healthy and non-competing ecosystem. Since its inception, 170 ASCENT cohort entrepreneurs (accounting upto 20% of the cohort) continue to be with the Foundation like
- Sanjay Arora, Group Medical Director – Dr Lal PathLabs and Founder – Suburban Diagnostics
- Shweta Mangal, Group Chief Executive Officer, MUrgency
- Vikram Bhat, Founder, Enrich Salon
- Ravneet Singh, Director, Ace Energy Infrastructure Pvt Ltd
- Roopak Saluja, Founder & CEO, BANG BANG Mediacorp, Founder – The 120 Media Collective, Founder – Jack in the Box Worldwide
- Smriti Dalvi, CEO, Florista India Pvt. Ltd
ASCENT also gives a great opportunity to its members to learn and network with the leaders of the industry by organizing its flagship annual event ‘ ASCENT Conclave’ for the last seven years that has witnessed 100+ prolific speakers including Rajiv Bajaj (Bajaj Auto), Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw (Biocon Ltd), Uday Kotak (Kotak Mahindra Bank), Nandan Nilekani (Infosys), Dr. Raghuram Rajan (Ex-RBI Governor), Sangita Reddy (Apollo Hospitals), Naveen Tewari (InMobi), Falguni Nayar (Nykaa), Sriharsha Majety(Swiggy), Harshil Mathur (Razorpay), Sajjan Jindal (JSW Group), Sourav Ganguly (BCCI) and many more. The annual entrepreneurial event to look forward to will be revived physically this year for its seventh edition on 24 November 2022 in Mumbai. The conclave will be focused at the theme of ‘Thriving on Change’ – deciphering the dynamically changed new-normal and carve out the path to the future of work.
Harsh Mariwala, Chairman – Marico LTD. and Founder of ASCENT Foundation said, “Ten years ago, I started ASCENT with an intention to offer peer-to-peer support to entrepreneurs and help them in their entrepreneurial journey as it gets lonely at the top. Today ASCENT has entrepreneurs from diverse regions and industries representing an annual turnover of more than Rs. 53,000 crores+. ASCENT, in its own way, has contributed towards building a new India by supporting and encouraging the entrepreneurs. We are thrilled to hold the 7th edition of the ASCENT Conclave physically in Mumbai after two years of organising it virtually owing to COVID-19. It has been one of the successful mega events for entrepreneurs across the country to learn and network with the leaders. I would like to thank all the people associated with ASCENT in our journey so far and urge us to keep contributing to the entrepreneurial ecosystem with a sense of gratitude and giving back.”