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R Narayanan

R. GOPALAKRISHNAN (Gopal) is an author, speaker and corporate adviser, with three parts to his career of over fifty years: first, thirty-one years in Hindustan Unilever, ending as vice chairman; second, seventeen years as director, Tata Sons; and third, since 2016, as author and corporate adviser. Currently, he is the non-executive chairman of Castrol India, and independent director of Hemas Holdings PLC, Sri Lanka. He is also distinguished professor at IIT Kharagpur, and executive-in-residence at Mumbai’s prestigious SP Jain Institute of Management and Research. He has so far authored fifteen books, notably, The Case of the Bonsai Manager, When the Penny Drops, A Biography of Innovations and Crash: Lessons from the Entry and Exit of CEOs. Gopal greatly welcomes feedback and comments on this book at

R. NARAYANAN began his career in Coca-Cola and Nestlé, followed by extensive experience in advertising. Since the 1980s, Narayanan has been deeply involved with start-ups. He founded and ran a company to make and market Big Fun, a chewing gum product. His next venture was to create a machine or business system to dispense dosa, just like hamburgers, an offering that he branded as Dosa King. He then became a passionate participant in angel investing and mentoring.

Books by the author

Wisdom for Start-ups from Grown-ups

Wisdom for Start-ups from Grown-ups

R Narayanan, R Gopalakrishnan
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