Intel’s Nivruti Rai says her company will spend $20 million on women led businesses in India by 2020. In what promises to be a big booster for women led innovations, Nivruti shattered any concerns that women couldn’t lead tech giants.

Founder of SheThePeople.TV, Shaili Chopra spoke to Nivruti Rai in a fireside chat on women creating the next wave of innovation. Nivruti spoke at #Elevate100, which partnered SheThePeople.TV for the #WomenSummit. She has committed to spend $14 million in women led businesses over the course of 2017. She plans to raise that number to $20 million by 2020.


Rai says that she was inspired by her parents’ dreams.

“I was the third girl child, when I was born my parents got condolence letters!” she says.

“I felt sad that my parents had to go through this just because I am a girl. I said that I will live my parents dream. My father’s dream was to be a great engineer- so I want to be the best engineer India has seen.”

On taking risk: 

Typically they say that women don’t take risks, and as a result they work in areas in which they do not need risk taking, she pointed out.

“I don’t agree. I am a big risk taker- I go jump. I want to create value.”

If we keep telling young girls that women are not supposed to take risks, then it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. We will start believing that we cannot take risks because we are not supposed to.”

“Let’s not create self fulfilling prophecies.”

On innovation: 

The only thing that differentiates managers and leaders is innovation, she says. And innovation comes from risk taking.

If you start woking on your own problem, put technology to it, and create value- that is innovation.

Creating good work environments for women: 

It is important to create a work environment where women are not afraid to fail, and where they can speak up. If a flower doesn’t blossom, we cannot force it. However we can create an environment where there is enough sun and water so that it can blossom organically.

On the future of digital: 

In historical days people used to say that geography is destiny. Smaller countries that were landlocked were destined to be poor. In the new world- connectivity is destiny. Connectivity happens in two ways- new technologies like 5 g, and technologies like autonomous driving.

In tomorrow’s world everything will generate data- a microwave, and even a home,- If we are not prepared to take data and translate information to value to create GDP- we will run behind. We need to adopt technology at the same time as the rest of the world, she says.

All entrepreneurs should think about what they can do  with all the digital information available.

Innovation is finding an idea, and making sure you iterate it enough to create value out of it.

Read Also: “Raised Money at the Idea Stage”: Rashi Menda at Elevate 100