UDAY LELE - CREATOR OF NEW WEALTH
Innovative, driven and self-made describes Uday Lele. He has created successful businesses in eight industries and on 4 continents every one as a start-up.
HIS PHILOSOPHY: To create products or services distinctly unique from anything else out there in the market place and which are perceived to be distinctly unique by the customer. This unique product or service transcends from being a want to a need or perceived need by humanity, leading to an improvement in the quality of life resulting in a very profitable enterprise and the creation of new wealth!
Background “I have been an entrepreneur and creator of new wealth all my life”
Graduating with distinction and honors from the University of Cambridge with a degree in Chemistry and Physics, Uday came home to his father who was in the hospital, the family steel mill in bankruptcy and the Union on strike. At age 18, Uday stepped in. In order to save the business he needed to deal with the suppliers, customers and the union. Faking bravado and age beyond his years, he negotiated extended terms with vendors, cash discounts for early customer’s payments and a deal with the union. In 6 months the mill was stable and Uday handed it back over to his father and went to continue his education at his father’s insistence.
In 1976, he graduated from the University of Bombay. His parents wanted him to continue his formal education but Uday was ready to tackle the world. With $20 dollars Uday began U-Sales and Aida Chemicals, Inc. Realizing it was impossible to compete with the “Big Boys” in the chemical commodity market, he focused on innovation and branding. At the age of 24, he offered 24 hour delivery and just-in-time supplies to his customers. The company slogan “We deliver on time” closed deals. His accomplishment was monumental. He grew the business to $54 million in seven years and achieved the distinction of being the youngest CEO on the Bombay stock exchange at age 32 and the stock issue oversold 40 times. Further leveraging his education in Chemistry, Uday moved into the Pharmaceutical Industry. Again innovation was his target. Here he developed India’s first over the counter women’s contraceptive, Today. To this day it is the best selling OTC contraceptive for women in India.
Moving to the United States in 1990, he went into confectionary. Keeping to his vision, he was the first to add fruit juice to sugar confection inventing the Juicee Gummy. He developed creative packaging and a pre-packaged, 360 degree display unit creating a new standard for packaging. His products were sold in all 50 states to retailers including Dollar General, K-mart, Target, Eckerd, Rite-aid, Walmart, 7-11, Dollar Tree, Safeway, Albertsons, and more. His candy company was one of the fastest growing and most successful in the Unites States for 2 decades.
While still in the candy businesses Uday started in Real Estate Development. Applying his vision he created a hybrid between luxury, single family homes and condos by offering 10 ft ceilings, direct elevators to their home and with minimal shared walls. Uday directed sales of over $30 million in the first 2 years by providing direction and leadership on lunch breaks and weekends. He now has $150 million worth of projects in the pipeline in Real Estate and Hospitality.