Ritesh Agarwal, founder and CEO of OYO Rooms, will join Shark Tank India Season 3's newest shark. Agarwal will judge alongside Aman Gupta, co-founder of Boat; Amit Jain, co-founder and CEO of CarDekho; Anupam Mittal, founder of the People Group; Peyush Bansal, Lenskart co-founder and CEO; and Vineeta Singh, co-founder of Sugar Cosmetics.
Agarwal took to X (formerly Twitter) on Saturday to announce that he will join Shark Tank India Season 3. Stating that he "assisted" small businesses across India, he said he "wholeheartedly contributed to the community" that stood beside him.
"@sharktankindia made entrepreneurship a household conversation and I am excited to be a small part of Season 3 and support more entrepreneurs emerging out of every corner of India," Agarwal wrote in the lengthy post.
Who is Ritesh Agarwal?
Agarwal is a 29-year-old founder and CEO of OYO Rooms. By becoming Shark Tank India Season 3's judge; he became the show's youngest shark.
Born in Bissam, Cuttack, Agarwal spent his childhood in Titilagarh in Odisha. He completed his primary education at Sacred Heart School in Rayagada, and later continued his academic journey at St John's Senior Secondary School in Kota, Rajasthan. After moving to Delhi in 2011 to pursue college education, he dropped out from the studies. In 2013, he was selected for the Thiel Fellowship, founded by renowned entrepreneur Peter Thiel.
Agarwal found himself in a legal soup in November 2019 when a hotelier Betz Fernandez filed a case of cheating was against him and six others. Fernandez, the owner of Roxel Inn in Domlur, Bengaluru, alleged that OYO had booked rooms with an agreement to pay him Rs 7 lakh per month. However, OYO failed to make any rent payments since May 2019, resulting in a loss of Rs 35 lakh for Fernandez.
The company responded saying that the allegations were "incorrect and defamatory in nature".
In 2020, Agarwal was one of the two against who Chandigarh businessman Vikas Gupta filed a complaint alleging that OYO abruptly withdrew from the business agreement with a criminal intent. Dera Bassi police registered a case against Agarwal for fraud and conspiracy. However, OYO denied the allegations.