He is only 16, but Ojas Batra is already worthy of the title – serial entrepreneur. Batra is the Founder and CEO of Hive Group of Companies, and just published his first book, Teenage AF.
The young lad dropped out of school at 10 after he felt that the education system was not equipped to impart him the life skills he needed.
How did your parents react to you dropping out of school?
My parents were sceptical, but gave me an opportunity to rationalise my decision. I worked out my plan of action for the next few years, detailing my interest in 3D design and VFX that I wanted to turn into my career. I came up with a backup plan, and only then, I presented it to them like a business deal, telling them if none of these plans worked in three years, I would return to formal schooling.
Don’t you think going to school is important?
For social well-being, it is to some extent extremely important. But moving on to experience other practical skills that interest you is also critical as schools mostly teach theoretical, traditional knowledge and lack executional skills.
When did you set up your first venture, and what was it all about?
I was 14 when I started my first venture. It was an edu-tech startup that provided skill-based learning at an affordable price and a great deal of practical exposure. I launched it with the intent to give back to the community all the skills and practical knowledge I had acquired in the four years of being away from school. The start-up was for students who were keen to learn, but lacked the opportunity to drop out of school and pursue their interest in marketing, coding, game development, etc. It was structured and made available online so that the students could access it anytime. This start-up got acquired in less than a year.
Tell us about the four companies that you set up.
Three of these start-ups fall under the Hive Group of Companies. The first is Teen Hive that helps teenagers develop a growth mindset, learn life skills like time management, communication, decision-making, etc. and build a career roadmap towards success. The second is Skill Hive, a skill identification and training institute where we help individuals identify the skill and career path meant for them and then mentor them. The third is Talent Hive, in its MVP (Minimum Viable Product) stage, is an initiative to help skilled individuals who are inclined to learn, but lack resources. The fourth venture is Advengers, an automation-based web development and marketing agency.
Tell us about Teenage AF, your debut book. How did you find time to write?
Teenage AF is semi-anecdotal and targetted at teenagers. Every stage of teenage life is covered in the book like age gaps and relation with them, stability and sustainability of relationships, mental health issues, academic career and role of technology, etc. I believe in time management, so I always try to maintain a fixed schedule. Also, I automate and delegate various tasks.