How Priyadeep of Manipal Institute is changing the world

Interview with an Upcoming Edupreneur

You know that you are about to meet someone incredible, when a google search of “PriyadeepSinha” yields 1500 search results for your reading pleasure .Here is a summary of his carbon footprint and the impact he has created so far through his startup ADD-on-GYAN Educational Services:

Priyadeep Sinha is recent graduate (2011 batch) at MIT, Manipal where he studied Mechanical Engineering. Having a childhood dream since the 8th Grade to have his own enterprise, he is now exclusively taking care of marketing and sales, product launches, legal department and media representation at ADD-on-GYAN – his start-up in the education sector. He has been a winner of over 10 technical presentation and Business-Plan Contests. He has helped and mentored many teams from Manipal University develop their business plans and win at various institutes across India. He has held leadership positions at college (President, Renewable Energy Club – Manipal) and school (House Captain) levels.

He was awarded ‘Global Achievers Award for Educational Excellence for 2012′ by Economic Development Forum, India. Recently, he was also selected as the ‘Achiever of the Year – 2011′ by He was the creator of Synergia – Manipal’s 1st ever Renewable Energy based Technical Fest and served as its first convener. He also has international work exposure as a Research Scholar at Strathclyde University (Glasgow, United Kingdom) in 2010. He is deeply interested in the education sector and was a selected fellow at Teach for India – 2011 which he could not undertake due to his commitments to ADD-on-GYAN

Here are excerpts from interview conducted by Nurture Talent Academy-India’s 1st Training Institute for Entrepreneurs :

NTA :What motivated you to take this initiative?

Priyadeep: I did not want to join the rat race and get a job, I wanted to do something different which was meaningful and useful, like change the inefficient education system in India. That is why I took up this initiative.

NTA: What roadblocks did you hit? How did you overcome them?

Priyadeep: 1) Raising money-I am grateful that my family supported me and helped me out financially in the initial stages. ADD on GYAN is now incubated at MUTBI (Manipal University Technology Business Incubator).

2) Forming a team-Getting the right mix of individuals for the team was initially very difficult.

NTA: What is an average workday like for you?

Priyadeep: No two days are ever the same, every day is different. I work 12-15 hours a day and sleep for about 4-5hours.

NTA: What are the most crucial things you have done to grow your business?

Priyadeep: Building a team was the most crucial part for me.

I currently have 5 members working full time and 20 interns.

 NTA: What’s the worst business advice you’ve ever received?

Priyadeep: Worst business idea I have ever received is “You have to lie and make things up to sell your product.” For example if a pencil costs Rs 1 to make, sell it for Rs 10.

I have never implemented this.

NTA: What’s the best business advice you’ve ever received?

Priyadeep: Listen to your heart and have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.

NTA: What is your favourite book/movie of all time?

Priyadeep: The Godfather by Mario Puzo is my favourite book and it is also my favourite movie of all time.

NTA: Which inspiring personality past/present would you like to have dinner with? Why?

Priyadeep: Steve Jobs

He was my biggest inspiration. He did what he liked, lived life on his own terms. Being the richest man in the cemetery did not matter to him. Going to bed at night feeling that he had done something wonderful, that’s what mattered to him.

NTA: If you were to start another business, what might it be?

Priyadeep: I am a big foodie, I love to eat. So I would probably start a restaurant.

NTA: Many entrepreneurs complain about not succeeding in business due to lack of adequate funding, what is your take on this matter?

Priyadeep: They are not entirely wrong in complaining. It is comparatively easier starting up in the US than it is in India. In India every tiny detail is scrutinised and is very difficult to start up by yourself without help. In the US start-ups receive more help both financially and otherwise.

NTA: How would you describe your leadership style?

Priyadeep: I am a team player at heart. I treat my team like my family. I do not like bossing people around unless it is necessary.

NTA: In your opinion, does an entrepreneur need an MBA to be successful? Are you planning to do an MBA in the future?

Priyadeep:  I don’t believe an MBA is necessary for being successful as an entrepreneur. An MBA becomes necessary when you are moulding someone to take the top management seat in an already established company. I would not do an MBA in the near future, say in the next 6 – 8 years.

NTA: Finally, Your advice to young entrepreneurs

Priyadeep: Do what you like to do, go by your gut instinct and stop worrying about other trivial things.

Link to Facebook page:

You can follow Priyadeep on twitter@PriyadeepSinha



-Interviewed by

Harshith Mallya

Campus Ambassador,

Nurture Talent Academy


About the Author

Amit Grover, founder of, is an IIT Delhi and IIM Indore alumnus, having more than 12 years of industry experience. He started Nurture Talent Academy, and earlier worked with Infosys, Asian Paints, Onida and Mumbai Angels. He regularly blogs on AHA Taxis, his recent venture, offers one way outstation travel across India.

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