Die Hard Entrepreneur.
His Inspiring Life Story
“Success is most often achieved by those who don’t know that failure is inevitable.” Gurbaksh Singh Chahal has proved this right. Let’s find out more about him, and get inspired by his incredible journey.
One of the most inspiring Internet entrepreneurs, philanthropists, and writers of our age, Gurbaksh Chahal is an America based NRI. He was born in 1982, and by the time he was 25 years of age, Gurbaksh had established two fruitful and flourishing start-up businesses in the area of Internet advertising. The two successful online ads companies Chahal founded are BlueLithium and ClickAgents. He sold BlueLithium to Yahoo for a whopping amount of three hundred million dollars. He also launched two more companies in the online advertising industry.
Following the success of his online advertising companies, Chahal entered the world of writing, and came up with a bestseller, “The Dream: How I Learned the Risks and Rewards of Entrepreneurship and Made Millions.” This book reveals his life story and the challenges he faced. The book was released in the year 2008, and came out as an inspiration for many people and won millions of hearts.
Gurbaksh Singh Chahal was also the only Indian-American to be invited to the Oprah Winfrey Show which made him an entrepreneur icon overnight. Oprah Winfrey presented her guest to the audience pleasantly by saying “My next guest is a high-school dropout who’s worth more than a hundred million dollars!” She gave a pause before people could react, and continued playfully by saying “And, he’s single.” One of the most inspiring entrepreneurs that I’ve come across is Gurbaksh Chahal, aka “G” she said as she interviewed him on the ‘Millionaire Moguls’ segment of her program.”
Early Days of Gurbaksh Chahal’s Life
Born on July 17, 1982, in the state of Punjab in India, Gurbaksh moved to San Jose, California, with his parents and elder brother, when he was four. Chahal was a very ambitious youngster, and at the age of sixteen, he dropped out of high school to pursue his dream of having a career in the first wave of the dot-com boom.
In his youth, he was a rebel. His upbringing was strict, and since he was the youngest, he wanted to get away from all the tasks his parents wanted him to do. His elder brother was a brilliant student, and his parents always persuaded him to study, as they wanted him to become a doctor when he grew up. He went on to Evergreen Valley College, and at the age of fifteen, butlost interest in studies, as he hated blood and dissecting animals. His parents thought their dream of him becoming a doctor were unimaginable.
His mother was a nurse in India, and father was a Police officer. His mother started working as a Hospital Orderly in San Francisco, while his father became a security officer after arriving to the US. Both had an academic background and had big dreams for their kids.
Gurbaksh Chahal’s Career
When he was eighteen, Chahal left his parents’ house and moved to his own place. In most Indian families, the sons are supposed to stay with their parents even after getting married. It is considered taboo amongst Indian families if a child leaves the parent’s house without their permission, it is marked as a sign of disrespect. So, his step was found to be unusual and rebellious. However, once he overcame those remarks, he worked on his looks by working out to lose his teenage chubbiness. He came out with the athletic looks and became an even more confident personality. He mentions all these experiences in his book “The Dream: How I Learned the Risks and Rewards of Entrepreneurship and Made Millions.” He also speaks about his success as an entrepreneur and how he used technology in making a solution that tracked the behavior of online visitors, and how at the age of only twenty-five, four years later, Yahoo bought his company for $300 million.
By the time his book was released, he was already an international icon. Gurbaksh was featured on the Fox reality show, “Secret Millionaire.” In this reality TV program, the millionaires secretly help poor communities and people. Chahal offered $110,000 to strangers on the TV show. Extra TV also interviewed him and named him “America’s Most Eligible Bachelor.”
His first project ClickAgents was a performance-based advertising network that he founded in 2000. After two years, ValueClick paid him 5.3 million of its shares worth $40 million and bought ClickAgents. Gurbaksh was only 18 at the time. In 2004, he founded BlueLithium, which specialized in understanding the behavioral pattern of the online users in banner advertising. This application tracked visitors’ interest like how they reacted to certain ads and how likely they were to click on them.
After selling his company BlueLithium to Yahoo, this tech entrepreneur became eligible for the exclusive club of young capitalists in San Francisco. He owned a penthouse, all the luxuries he could dream of and an entourage at such an early age. Then he founded two more companies, one of which was known as g-Wallet, an online payment system, which later pivoted to become RadiumOne, one of the first pioneers in programmatic advertising.
In 2014, Gurbaksh became CEO of Gravity 4 his fourth company, which is also in the Internet space.
The Chahal Foundation
The Chahal Foundation, a 501(c)3 registered non-profit defines Limitless Dreams and Possibilities, and was rebranded the same year as Gravity4 was formed to broaden its scope. This non-profit organization was born on July 17, Chahal’s thirty-second birthday. He said he wanted to give something unique to the world as his legacy. He wanted to stay grounded and meet ordinary people more than rendering the society with particular privileges. The Chahal Foundation’s mission is to create a positive change in the society. The organization originally spread awareness about the Wisconsin Sikh temple shooting and stopped people from indulging in hate crimes. It laid stress on improving education, providing scholarships and supporting disaster relief efforts.
The website of the foundation is www.chahalfoundation.org .
Gurbaksh Singh Chahal: Motivational Speaker & Philanthropist
Gurbaksh has personally donated millions to various charities. He has worked tirelessly for the underprivileged, throughout his life. In recent years, he has started a very moving and motivational blog, BeLimitless, where he goes into many of his secrets to success. Since then he has also gone on to start an Entrepreneurial Scholarship Program in the year 2010, named Gurbaksh Chahal Entrepreneurial Scholarship Program, in collaboration with the Pace University.
Recognitions and Awards:
Chahal was awarded the ‘Top Innovator of the Year’ award in 2006. In the year 2010, he was named as the Best Young Tech Entrepreneur in Business week. Darpan, Extraordinary Awards, also named him as the International Sensation in the same year. In mensXP.com, X51, he was called India’s Most Influential Businessmen of the Year. Later, Gurbaksh was also honored with the Leaders in Management Award and was given an honorary degree in Commercial Science by the Pace University.
In the Year 2011, Under30CEO honored him as the Most Influential CEO. Gurbaksh Chahal also featured in Forbes Greatest Risks. On the other hand, the same year, Men’s Health magazine recognized him as one of the world’s “richest and fittest guys ever.”
In the year 2012, Gurbaksh was awarded “People’s Award for Excellence in Business Leadership” as well as “Amrapali Award for Entrepreneur of the Year,” by Light of India Awards 2012. He also emerged as iMedia’s Top 10 Hottest Digital Marketers, in the same year, while Complex magazine recognized him as one of The 25 Richest Tech Entrepreneurs Under 30.
He came across as one of the Top 40 Entrepreneurs Under 40 in San Francisco Business Times and also Direct Marketing News, in 2013, and also received the esteemed Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
Gurbaksh Chahal Quotes
“If you genuinely want something, don’t wait for it – teach yourself to be impatient.”
“If you waste time, you miss on opportunities. I’ve also learned that the biggest lessons came from my biggest mistakes.”
“If you implement the fundamentals in your life; you can achieve success in whatever you pursue.”
Chahal has a few tips for his followers, and says that to become successful entrepreneurs, they must keep these things in mind:
• Don’t do things that you don’t want to do
• Never feel sorry for yourselves
• Don’t believe the world “owes you a living.
• Decide to be happy
• Don’t fear change
• Always give back
• Always believe in yourselves
• Don’t squander mental energy on what you can’t control
• Shouldn’t be scared of taking risks
• Don’t hold grudges
He motivates people by saying that life is like a roller coaster ride. It may be scary to some while exciting to others. Individuals who feel the thrill can work towards achieving their goals. He adds that life is given once, and it is up to us what we want to do with it. You can keep your emotions in control and be confident in whatever you do, and success will find you.
His presence on Social Media is motivating for many new entrepreneurs. For the people, who want to follow him, below are the links to his social media presence:
Gurbaksh Chahal Videos
His inspiring videos can be watched on Youtube. He is actively present on Youtube, and his dynamic personality and knowledge give him a very loyal following. Find Gurbaksh Chahal’s Youtube Channel here.
Gurbaksh is still a young and successful serial entrepreneur. He has a massive number of followers that want to learn from his continued tenacity in entrepreneurship. Since he is active on Twitter, you can follow him on Twitter. Gurbaksh’s Twitter handle is www.twitter.com/gchahal
His presence in Wikipedia, news, fan pages, books, social media and his individual sites are also remarkable. His writings have a great influence on his followers.
The Story Ahead
Chahal has had his own ups and downs in life. But he persevered. Without his family’s support, Gurbaksh achieved what he wanted to. He represents the youth of today. With so many awards and presence in magazines like Business Week, Forbes and Entrepreneur Magazine, he is one of the most influential people of his era. However, he was featured on many TV programs and talk shows, and his story has been written in golden words all across.
With his success and image, he deserved respect and recognition that he got through numerous awards. It is rightly said that hard work pays off. And in this case, his efforts paid him off very well. He aspires to achieve more. There goes a saying, “When you cease to dream, you cease to live.”
Dream Big. Hustle Harder.