Leading a group of leaders is not an easy task, but Amdavad’s Chiranjiv Patel — who founded the Entrepreneurs’ Organisation (EO) chapter in Gujarat in 2010 — has been bestowed with this responsibility after he was unanimously chosen the area director of EO-South Asia for 2014-15.
It is for the first time that EO-South Asia has got a director from Gujarat. With this, Patel will now lead the billionaires, leaders and next generation entrepreneurs of the region. He will take charge from July 2014 wherein he will be leading a group of 1,950 entrepreneurs, who today collectively employ 4.3 million people and have a combined turnover of $42 billion (over Rs2.50 lakh crore).
“It is going to be a totally different experience. I will be leading the most influential community of South Asia. Here, I will get a chance to help, guide, support and shape the members of EO in South Asia. For every event or meeting, I will lead the members before taking any decision,” said Patel, who is the managing director of PCS Group of Companies.
As an area director of EO–South Asia, Patel now eyes to open new chapters of the organisation in the region. “Purpose of the EO is socialising, networking, learning, grooming, supporting and most important, partying. We are not allowed to lobby and use this platform for any other reason. Hence, the criteria and eligibilities of becoming a member are strict and stringent. We take members only on invitation with the basic criteria of having turnover of at least Rs30 crore,” said Patel.
At present, EO South Asia has chapters in India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Pakistan, Nepal, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Philippines. “Soon, we will open new chapters in Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and other cities of India. In India, there are currently 12 chapters, including recently launched — Ludhiana and Pune. Looking at the demand and requirement, we may open a few more chapters,” said Patel.
Globally, EO has 9,500 members in 131 chapters in 40 countries. The total turnover of all these members across the world is estimated to be more than $150 billion (about Rs10 lakh crore). “Every year we meet several times. We invite renowned speakers and have informal interaction with members. The speakers include politicians, Bollywood actors, spiritual gurus, businessmen and others,” said Patel.
EO organises Regional Integration Event (RIE), University and different programmes where in all members gather, discuss and debate on different issues. “In our last edition of RIE in Kolkata, the theme was ‘Action Changes Things’ where hundreds of members participated with their spouses. Next year, the RIE will held in Kathmandu with theme ‘Beyond’,” said Patel.
Patel founded the Gujarat chapter in 2010. There are 42 members — who are currently employing over 3,800 employees with a total annual turnover of more than Rs2,100 crore. The average age of EO members in Gujarat is 32.
“The members of Gujarat chapter meet every month. Here, we have also invited guest speakers like Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif,” he said.