Journey of ultimate success: School dropout to CEO

Journey of ultimate success: School dropout to CEO


Shruti Aggarwal

Shruti Aggarwal

26 Jun 2019, 17:22 — 5 min read

Background: The story of the founder of Quick Heal proves that sky is the limit if you want to achieve something big in your life. Shruti Aggarwal in her previous article explained 10 genius ways to create a buzz around your startup. In this article she shares the amazing story of Kailash Katkar.

This is the success story of a 10th grade dropout whose humble beginnings from being a radio and calculator repairman to becoming the CEO of a million dollar company is truly an inspiration for all. Kailash Katkar, founder and CEO of Quick Heal, a company providing antivirus solutions since the last 28 years, is a personality interwoven with experience, hard work, opportunities and vision without any theoretical knowledge. Sounds impossible right? Read on to know how this man built a kingdom out of nowhere.

The mere beginning

Born in a typical Maharashtrian family of a small village Rahmitapur in Maharashtra, Kailash spent his childhood with two siblings, a mother and a father who worked in Philips as a machine setter. They later shifted to Pune where he grew up.

Being quite weak in studies, he flunked his 9th standard and dropped his school to support his family financially.

It was the year 1990 when Kailash started his own repair shop with an initial seed funding of INR 15,000. This was his first step towards his entrepreneurial journey.

The new life

Starting with a pay of INR 400 per month, Kailash started repairing radio and calculators in a nearby shop with a great enthusiasm. Seeing the determination and zeal to do something better with his life, the owner of the shop sent him to Mumbai to gain knowledge and learn how to repair other gadgets. He returned with a bag full of knowledge and life became a little better. His pay was raised to INR 1500 per month.

Also read: Love yourself, love your work

A new upgrade

As days passed, his passion grew further. Within a short span of time he shifted from repairing radios to ledger posting machines. However the Facit (a vintage pinwheel mechanical calculator) machines and desktop electric calculators at his office would interest him more than the repair of calculators that had, by then became his forte. Later on, he signed an annual maintenance contract with a leading newspaper company to repair machines and product.

Laying the foundation of Quick Heal

It was the year 1990 when Kailash started his own repair shop with an initial seed funding of INR 15,000. This was his first step towards his entrepreneurial journey.  Once that took off, he moved on to his next project and started CAT Computer Services. It was during that period that Kailash realised that viruses affecting computer systems were increasingly becoming a case of concern. His younger brother, Sanjay, was a computer engineer from Pune. Together, they decided to do something about this and later laid the foundation of ‘Quick Heal’ in the year 1993. In 1994, the first Quick Heal anti-virus for DOS was released followed by Win 3.1 in 1995 and Windows 95 in 1996 as well and it was well accepted by the market.

Also read: 
Should you pursue your passion?

The final outcome

Kailash mentioned that the company grew with a pace of 100% and by 2006 Quick Heal was the number one antivirus software in India.  

The optimistic entrepreneur presented his words in a Chandigarh event saying, “We reached the number one position and became the top antivirus company in India as per the market share in 2006 and we reined the position till the last survey of the surviving company. They actually stopped doing the survey as we had the largest share according to their consecutive surveys in the market and it was growing by the year.”

Today the company has more than 12000 employees with more than 17 million customers across 112+ countries and has transformed into a globally-known brand.

Also read: What’s the most courageous thing you have done in your business journey?

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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views, official policy or position of GlobalLinker. 


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