The charismatic Naveen Jain shot to limelight when Fortune magazine put him among the 40 richest Americans under the age of 40. Quitting his job as a group manager with Microsoft, the Meerut lad started his own thing, InfoSpace in 1996, which soon went on to become the next big thing in content aggregation over the Internet.
With clients like Netscape, AOL and the Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition, InfoSpace is now garnering its strength on the wireless Web and hoping to command a sizable portion of it.
Naveen Jain, born in Meerut and son of a central government servant, went to study further in the US in 1979. An engineer by profession and restless by nature, he completed his MBA in general management and started working with several tech companies before landing a job with Microsoft as a program manager in 1989. Jain, thanks to the MS stock options, was a rich man when he left Microsoft.
The entrepreneur inside awakened soon and Naveen quit Microsoft, founded InfoSpace, and went out in the market with a mission to "deliver real-world content on the Internet - anytime, anywhere and on any device."
InfoSpace took the market by storm. The company teamed up with top wireless carriers and manufacturers, and now has an affiliate network of more than 3,100 Web sites. Under Naveen’s stewardship, InfoSpace started enabling navigation of the Internet from phones, pagers, Palm Pilots, kiosks, and any other wireless devices.
The charismatic Jain, who has a host of adjectives describing him, like "outlandish" and "a fireball of energy" and "Naveen-centric", is nothing if not manic with his 20-hour workdays and high-octane lifestyle.
Jain also has the vision of making his company the first "trillion dollar company" in the world. He hasn't managed to achieve this vision yet, but he's come mighty close to being the best entrepreneur on this planet.
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