The 42-year-old hairstylist attends to around eight customers a day, working in two shifts of 2-3 hours each, morning and evening. But what he does in between the two shifts is the stuff fairy tales are made of.
Ramesh Babu owns a fleet of 68 luxury cars
The man who wields the scissors at Bowring sits at a different office during rest of the day as CEO of a large car rental company that owns a fleet of luxury cars, including a dazzling Rs.3.3 crore Rolls Royce, and a range of Mercs, BMWs, Volkswagens, and Innovas.
His company, Ramesh Tours and Travels Private Limited, owns a total of 127 cars and has on its rolls around 120 employees. Most of them are drivers who draw a monthly pay of not less than Rs.14000, with additional overtime incentives.
“We are one of the top companies in the country in this field,” says Ramesh, who lost his father when he was just 7 years old, and later braved poverty and hunger to reach this position.
His rise to success is marked by hard work, a burning desire to succeed, and the favour shown by a few good-hearted men and women.
(Learn more about the success mantras of Champions. Sarath Kumar, top international motorcycle racer, and the first Indian to secure a podium finish at an international motorsports event, was a child laborer once. To Read his story Click Here)
He says, “We had a hair salon at Brigadier Road. The shop was called ‘Modern Hair Dressers’ and it was started in 1928 by my grandfather. My father was running the shop till his death. I was 7 then and I had two other younger siblings.
“The responsibility of bringing us up fell on my mother, who started working as a housemaid to support the family. For many years, we survived on one meal a day. I became so used to it that even today I don’t have my breakfast.”
In spite of the situation at home, Ramesh studied well and was among the top three rankers in class. He was a sportsman too. He played football in school and represented Karnataka in the junior nationals in 1500 metres athletic event.
At 13, he took up a part-time job as a newspaper delivery boy and earned Rs.60 per month. His mother took up small tailoring jobs and made some extra money. But that hardly changed the situation for the family.
He recalls an incident that happened when he was in class five. At that time, the family’s hair salon was being run by his uncle – father’s brother – who used to pay them about Rs.5 daily as their share of the income.
Bollywood actors and top industrialists travel in his cars when they are in Bangalore
“I was in class 5 and we were instructed to use fountain pens for the first time at school. Until then we were using pencils for writing. I went to our shop and told the person working there – an employee who had been appointed by my father – that I needed a pen.
He gave Rs.3.50 and I bought a Pilot pen with the money. In the evening, when I went to the shop my uncle was furious. He snatched the pen from me and said I don’t need such expensive pens and gave me a cheaper pen instead. That incident fuelled my ambition to succeed in life,” says Ramesh, who has the fortune of putting his own children in top schools.
He has two daughters and a son. The eldest daughter is studying in class ten at a well-known residential school in Kothagiri and he spends around Rs.1.5 lakh on her education per annum.
An important decision he took early in life was to learn the barbering skills of his father. He took charge of the family’s hair salon in 1990 and renamed it ‘Inner Space’. He became a hit with youngsters who started making a beeline to his shop and there were days when he had worked up to 3 am to cater to waiting customers.
Though he was not able to complete his PUC (Pre University Course), he managed to obtain a diploma in electronics later.
For couple of years, he worked as a marketing executive for a private company. But the turning point in his life came after he purchased a Maruti Omni in 1995 on a loan. Based on the advice of a well-wisher, he decided to rent out his car.
His first client was Intel, which had a small office in Bangalore then. His business grew as Intel expanded its operations.
“Intel had just four employees when we started working with them. But they grew fast. We looked after their transport needs till 2000 by which time they had around 250 employees and 25 of our cars were on duty for them,” he recalls.
Ramesh always looks back on the path he has travelled
Meanwhile, Ramesh’s client list continued to grow. He entered the luxury car segment in 2004 when he bought his first Mercedes Benz. He now owns a fleet of 68 luxury cars. Bollywood actors, celebrities, and top industrialists travel in his cars when they are in Bangalore.
In 1997, he had opened a hair salon at Bowring Institute. Though he has closed the other shop due to lack of parking space and other issues that cropped up with Bangalore’s exponential growth in the last couple of decades, Ramesh has no such plans for the one at Bowring.
Ask him why he needs to continue cutting hair, and he shoots back, “Why not? How can I forget the job that has made me what I am?”
Nor has he forgotten those who helped him in his hard days. He makes special mention of two people: Ms. Nandini Ashok and Mr. Philip Louise.
Take a bow, Nandini and Philip. You have helped a worthy man!
Mysuru: His is a B to B story or to be more precise a Barber to a Billionaire story. Starting out as a humble barber, Mr Ramesh Babu , 45, today is a proud owner of 378 ordinary cars and 120 top-end luxury cars , including the Rolls Royce Ghost which he hires out to corporate giants, and filmstars like Amitabh Bachchan and Aamir Khan when they come to Bengaluru on visits.
The entrepreneur, who now runs Ramesh Tours and Travels in Bengaluru , is still in touch with his roots, making sure he cuts hair three days a week at his salon at the Bowring Institute in the city. “It keeps me humble,” he told the audience at a symposium held as part of the three day “Mysuru travel mart,” here on Friday.
His father Gopal, who ran a barber’s shop on Brigade road, died when he was seven years old and his uncle took over the business, but gave the family only Rs 5 a day, forcing his mother had to work as domestic help.
He took a job while in class VIII delivering papers and milk to houses on a cycle gifted to his mother by the daughter of the house she worked in, Ms Nandini. But he doggedly did his SSLC and worked as an office boy while doing his PUC in commerce at a night college.
Then one day he confronted his uncle and asked him to hand over the salon, which he did. Soon he decided to give up his studies and gave all his attention to the salon. While to begin with he only watched his hired barber cut hair, one day he was forced to do it himself when a customer arrived early. That was the beginning.
His travel business began quite by chance in 1994 when he bought his first Maruti car on a loan and found it hard to pay it off.
Ms Nandini again stepped in and helped him hire it out for people travelling outside the city. “In 2001, I was asked to send a Mercedes for someone in Bengaluru. I borrowed it but it stalled halfway. So I decided to buy one in 2004. Now I have 378 cars including 120 luxury ones. People want luxury, they are ready to pay for it,” added the entrepreneur, who hopes to own 700 cars in a decade.
“Even when I had to clear a road tax of Rs 3.78 crores I sold my wife’s jewellery and other properties but not the cars. I still have my Maruthi van,” he smiled.
Bengaluru barber Ramesh Babu just bought a Rs 3.2 crore Mercedes-Maybach S600
IndiaToday.in | New Delhi, March 2, 2017 | Written by Pratik Rakshit | UPDATED 17:53 IST
Billionaire Ramesh Babu is the proud owner of a brand new Mercedes-Maybach S600 which has a market price of Rs 2.6 crore. However, Babu bought his Mercedes-Maybach S600 for a whooping Rs 3.2 crore and is only the third person in Bengaluru to own a Mercedes-Maybach S600. The first two being Vijay Mallya and a city-based builder. Ohh, also, Ramesh Babu happens to be a barber by profession.
Ramesh Babu, owner of Ramesh Tours and Travels, is a luxury car aficionado and has been collecting expensive cars for over 30 years now. Babu began his career from giving Rs 75 haircut at his Bowring Institute, where he spends at least 5 hours every day, catering to his regular clientele. Ramesh Babu is also the owner of a Rolls Royce Ghost, 11 Mercedes-Benz, 10 BMWs, 3 Audis, and 2 Jaguars. The latest addition to his growing collection is the Maybach.
Now, before you raise your eyebrows, let us clear out that Ramesh Babu has bought all his cars from his own money and also bank loans. Due to his well connection with the rich and famous of Bengaluru, Ramesh has had a very lucrative car rental business.
The Mercedes-Maybach S600 was launched in India in September, 2015 and comes with a 6.0-litre V12 petrol engine that churns out a mammoth 530 BHP of peak power and a mind boggling 830 Nm of peak torque. The engine comes mated to a 7-speed automatic transmission and has the ability to rush from 0-100kmph in under 5 seconds.
Ramesh Babu started his car rental business in 1994 when he used to rent out his first car, Maruti Suzuki Omni and has been growing ever since.
Representational: Cabs lined up and ready to go for Ola rental service. Photo: IANS
Taxi-hailing app Ola has now entered the car rental business. The company has put together a new service which charges people on an hourly basis instead of the point-to-point to charges in the current model.
The company in a Google Playstore post said, “Need a car on standby to take you around? Now rent a cab on an hourly package with the all new ‘Rentals’. Available for local travel in select cities.”
The rates for the rental services for 4 hours/40km are Rs 750 for an Ola Mini (Tata Indican Maruti Ritz, Nissan Micra), Rs 850 for a Ola Prime (Dzire, Etios, Sunny) and Rs 2,900 for Luxury car (Camry, Accord, Mercedes-Benz).
Currently, players such as Zoomcar.com and Rentalcars.com operate in this segment which has largely been dominated by local players.
Zoomcar’s rental services are much cheaper depending on the car as well as package in terms of km. For instance, renting a Ford Figo in Mumbai for the same time span of 4 hours/40 km would cost Rs 380, while a sedan Honda City would cost Rs 440.
However, Zoomcar’s offers only self-drive rentals and does not have the option of a driver. Ola on the other hand is a cab service and comes with this option. It may however choose to self-drive option in the future, says an Economic Times report.
Ola’s rental service is available in all major 31 cities in India, including Viskhapatnam, Warangal, Delhi, Jaipur, Hyderabad, Indore, Ahmedabad, Chandigarh, Pune, Coimbatore, Chennai, Mumbai, Kolkata, Kochi, Vadodara, Bhopal, Bangalore, Surat, Jodhpur, Mysore, Guwahati, Bhubaneswar, Shimla, Hubli Dharwad, Vijayawada, Siliguri, Jabalpur, Kanpur, Rajkot, Ranchi and Durgapur.
Rival Uber currently does not offer rental services. Uber recently launched its Rs 6 per km charge for the UberGO service in order to compete with Ola Micro. So it remains to be seen whether Uber will follow in the same way.
Ola currently has around 3.5 lakh cabs on its platform and is present across 102 cities, according to an Indian Express report. Apart from this, it has also started an outstation service which offers customers inter-city travel.
Courtesy: Zee Business
Car Rental Business in India : How to Start
Do you know about the Car Rental Business in India. Its is one of the most growing industry from past year. There are many leaders in Car Aggregators and Car Rental Business in India.The Indian taxi market is pegged at USD 9 billion (Rs 54,000 crore), of which less than 10% is organized.
Car Rental Business Plan and Model in India
Starting a Car Rental Business in India you have to create a best business plan for the car rental company. There are many types of car rental business plan like you can start a Rental Fleet Business (owned the Fleet) or you can act as Cab Aggregators like Ola or Uber even you can attach your Car with Ola Cabs & start the business from Small investment.
Even India’s leading Cab Aggregators like Ola or Meru Cabs started from the rental fleet business and on later stage they change their business model into an app based cab aggregation service (similar to Uber) and the rest is history.
A Car Rental Business in india have following revenus lines –
- Fleet Management via Tele Sales
- Percentage Commission from Trips being served through its platform (Trip Based Commissions)
- Corporate Tie Ups / Event Tie Ups
- Vehicle On-Boarding Fee
- In-Cab Advertisements
- Fleet Leasing (To Drivers)
- Car Type
- Peak Time Charges
In a best car rental business plan you have to include target market, your start up investment, supplies. How you access the market considering the demand, projected annual revenues and expenses. Below are good presentation on Car Rental Business Model in India.
How to Register a Cab or Car Rental Business or Company in India
After the preparing your business model and plan you have to register a car rental company in India. There are lot of option for the registration a cab company in India like from register a private limited company to solo firm. some website like myonlineca which can helps you to choose right legal entity for your cab business in India.
Apart from the legal entity you have to apply for the service tax registration as cab service provider and recover the service tax from the customer & pay to the government. You need some license also for the running a Car Rental Company in India.
Meet Ramesh Babu, the Billionaire Barber Who Owns 400+ Cars, Including BMWs, Jaguars & a Rolls Royce
By: Sohini Dey On:
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Tailor-made to all your executive/guest transportation needs. Corporate tariff is designed for a long-lasting relationship. We assure a 24 hours ‘Yes Sir’ service which is maintained 365 days a year. Special coordination and systems are in place for handling large requirements like conferences and delegations.
We are one of the few car rental companies in India licenced to offer a “Self-Drive Option”. We also design tours specific to our clients travel & tourism requirements.