Zerodha is a financial services company built to offer online trading services and brokerage facilities to stock market traders. Founded by two brothers Nithin and Nikhil Kamath in 2010 and headquartered in Bangalore, Zerodha claims to be the largest stockbroker company in India.
With the largest number of active clients (over 6,277,434 people), Zerodha truly lives up to its claims. It also has one of the lowest fees in the market, making it accessible to a larger population.
The name Zerodha stems from the word ‘Zero’ and the Sanskrit word ‘Rodha’ meaning barrier. Hence, zero barriers. Zerodha is also considered one of the safest stockbrokers you can invest in as it is a zero-debt company; there is no borrowing and lending of any sort.
Zerodha also has a YouTube channel named ‘Zerodha Online’ where they explain all things brokerage. Zerodha Varsity is another free platform giving out in-depth financial lessons and stock market dedicated to educating the common public about
Zerodha Starting Up Story
Zerodha kick-started operations on the 15th of August, 2010 with the goal of breaking all barriers that traders and investors face in India in terms of cost, support, and technology.
The co-founders bootstrapped their way to success; building a company solely with personal finances rather than depending on external funding.
“We started out as a small team, had no pedigree education, no background in tech, no experience, but had a passion for capital markets and the intent to help other traders like us,” says Nithin.
He adds, “I did have a plan for the first year of starting the company; to build a brokerage firm for active traders like me. And if it doesn’t work, I’ll get back to trading.” However in the first year, the company realised that its scope was much more expansive than originally anticipated, and it surprisingly gained much trust from customers.
Previously, their customers used to invest only around 25,000- 50,000 rupees in the initial years of launching the service because they questioned the credibility of the service, but now they have people investing lakhs and crores of money on a daily basis.
Life Journey of Nithin and Nikhil Kamath
Nithin Kamath was born on 5th October 1979 in Karnataka and is the CEO of Zerodha. He attended Bangalore Institute of Technology, an engineering college. He started trading at the very age of 17. The need for launching a company stemmed from his interest in trading and the hurdles he faced during his trading days.
Nikhil was born on 5th September 1987, also in Karnataka. He dropped out of high school at the age of 14 and at 33, he became one of India’s youngest billionaires, proving that one doesn’t need to acquire a degree to persist in the world.
He says that he didn’t have any plans after dropping out, and his only goal was to earn money. He did so by selling used phones and surprisingly, profited off of it. He then started working at a call center at the age of 17 and eventually quit the job to unite with his brother, Nithin, in the making of Zerodha.
Besides Zerodha, he’s the author of three books- ‘Dropping Out of School into the Markets’, ‘Wealth Management: 101’ and ‘Risks vs. Rewards in Driving Capital Movement’.
The secret behind their extraordinary success
Zerodha went from zero to a valuation of $1 Billion in just a span of 10 years and all of this was done with absolutely no funding and zero marketing. This is what makes the company’s work so much more intriguing as well as impressive. How did a company witness such extraordinary success with no advertising and funding?
The efficiency of the company could determine this massive growth. This efficiency of the product elicits a certain irreversible behaviour of customers where they can’t go back to using any inefficient alternative of this product.
The product’s unique selling proposition (USP) causes people to spread the word about it. This is a phenomenon that can be explained by the Delta 4 theory put forth by Kunal Shah. In short, the ability of a product to successfully eradicate the inefficiencies in a specific market indicates a revolutionary startup.
The patterns of inefficiency were studied by the founders of Zerodha and they aimed at making a product so well structured and productive that it would bridge the gap between the need of the people and the availability of the product that an individual requires.
Today, over one crore clients place millions of orders through Zerodha every single day and this number is continuously growing day by day.