Skyroot Aerospace made history in November 2022 when it became the first private company in South Asia and India to launch a rocket into space. Here are some important business lessons learned from founder Pawan Chandana.
After the historic achievement of the Chandrayaan-3 mission, in which India became the first nation to land a spacecraft close to the lunar south pole on August 23, it is no secret that India is now a major participant in the space industry.
India’s space industry is anticipated to reach USD 40 billion by 2040, according to Union Minister of State for Science and Technology Jitendra Singh! A profession in the space sector is in high demand right now, and starting a business there would be even better. According to Singh, there were just four space startups in India in 2014, but by 2023 there would be more than 150.
Skyroot Aerospace accomplished the historic feat of being India and South Asia’s first private firm to launch a rocket, the Vikram-S, into space in November 2022. In April 2023, less than a year later, they announced the successful test fire of the Dhawan-II, a cutting-edge 3D-printed cryogenic rocket engine.
With its headquarters in Hyderabad, Skyroot has quickly become India’s first company for private space launches, with ambitions comparable to those of SpaceX. The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) scientist Pawan Kumar Chandana and former ISRO engineer Naga Bharath Daka founded their firm in 2018, and it has achieved substantial advancements in the aerospace sector.
The fast development of Skyroot Aerospace has been made possible by Pawan Kumar Chandana’s remarkable track record at ISRO, which spans over six years.
India is now a major player in the commercial aerospace industry thanks to his avionics technical prowess and visionary leadership, which have enabled the business to create cutting-edge space launch vehicles to fulfill the soaring needs of the satellite market.
Skyroot is set to transform India’s future in space exploration thanks to support from ISRO and the Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre (IN-SPACe).
A day after ISRO’s successful Chandrayaan-3 mission, India Today spoke with Pawan Chandana outside of the SmartIdeathon competition hosted at GITAM (considered to be a university) in Hyderabad.
For the benefit of the students participating in the startup competition, the chief guest gave a presentation in which he discussed his journey from childhood through ISRO to Skyroot and enumerated a few entrepreneurial skills he acquired along the way.
Here are seven crucial entrepreneurship lessons from the pioneer in space technology that might serve as motivation for ambitious businesspeople and engineers:
According to Pawan Chandana, instructors have an extraordinary capacity to influence the course of their pupils’ lives.
He claims, based on his personal experiences, that it was the committed teachers in his life who were instrumental in guiding him toward his enthusiasm for space exploration.
“I think because all the teachers here give great attention to their students, they actually have the potential to change the future,” he says.
One of the most important things Chandana has learned from his entrepreneurial path is the importance of steadfastly following your passions.
He encourages everyone to follow their own path “even if everybody else in the world is going in the opposite direction.”
When he thinks back on his time at IIT, he remembers that although many of his peers chose safe government employment, he had his heart set on something far more risky. He was interested in learning more about the difficulties of space travel.
With this unwavering commitment to following his passion, he set out on a unique adventure that finally resulted in the formation of Skyroot Aerospace.
Any successful endeavor is built on fundamental knowledge, and Chandana thinks that his success was facilitated by his thorough mastery of these ideas.
He devoted a significant amount of his time to learning the specifics of technology and business.
“Dhirubhai Ambani, for instance, had excellent business foundations. He doesn’t have a Harvard MBA or anything else, right? He clarifies.
Thinking large is the name of the game in the world of entrepreneurship, according to Chandana. He counsels budding business owners not to avoid risky endeavors just because they look intimidating.
According to Pawan Chandana, “When you think something or start something very big, I think you will have fewer competitors. And in fact, the world will conspire to make it happen because people would love to work with you, investors would love to invest in you, and I think the whole world will support you.”
Chandana is an enthusiastic supporter of entrepreneurship. He thinks it provides unmatched freedom, fulfillment, and the capacity to bring about transformational change. He views it as the best career option since it enables people to construct, generate employment, and make a big contribution to the advancement of their nation.
He states with confidence, “In my opinion, the finest job option is entrepreneurship since it grants flexibility and independence. It offers the chance to develop a nation. It provides a chance to generate jobs.
He also adds by saying, “If you want money, I think nothing better than entrepreneurship to give money. You want satisfaction? Nothing better. And if you want great impact, entrepreneurship is the way to go.”
Entrepreneurship is a great career choice, but Chandana understands that it may not be for everyone. He personally worked at ISRO for six years before starting his own business.
He calls out space technology as an area of engineering that is very promising. He argues that rockets are wonders of automation that require knowledge from many different technical fields.
He says, “You know, it’s just two years since the space sector has opened up. I think it will be a great future for us in the next 10 years. And I strongly suggest exploring space as a career in the future.”
Chandana wraps off his enlightening speech with a motivational message for India’s young that is resonant with potential and promise.
He thinks that the sky is simply the beginning and not the end. He exhorts young people to have lofty goals and influence their nation’s future.