Widely known as the Noodle King, Binod Chaudhary is Nepal’s first and only billionaire. He heads the Chaudhary Group (CG), Nepal’s biggest business conglomerate, that has forayed into fields as diverse as banking, insurance, finance, hotels, food, real estate, retail and electronics.
The Chaudhary family traces its roots to India. His grandfather Bhuramal Chaudhary was a textile merchant who migrated from the state of Rajasthan to Nepal in search of greener pastures. After his demise, his son Lunkaran Chaudhary expanded his business and set up Arun Emporium, Nepal’s first department store. Subsequently, due to his ill health, Binod Chaudhary was forced to take up the family business at the age of 18.
The high demand for Thai noodles among the Nepalese led Binod to take up the manufacture of noodles. He called his noodles Wai Wai, meaning “fast, fast” in Thai. Within a short period, Wai Wai noodles became the most popular brand of noodles in Nepal. He gradually expanded his business overseas and setup factories of CG Foods in India, Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia and Serbia. Wai Wai noodles are sold in over 35 countries today and have earned Binod a 2% stake in the world’s instant noodles market.
Binod Chaudhary set up the Cinnovation Group in Singapore as a multi-dimensional conglomerate offering world-class products and services. This group now includes over 48 companies and has vibrant offices in a number of countries. Cinnovation|CG made it to the Forbes list in 2013 as the first Nepalese group to enter the Billion-dollar club. With a personal net worth of over USD 1.3 billion, Binod is Nepal’s sole billionaire.
Binod says that entrepreneurs need not necessarily come from business schools and that there is a lot one can learn outside the classroom. He attributes his success to self-discipline and is very appreciative of the Japanese ethics of teamwork, meticulousness and never keeping work pending. He advises aspiring entrepreneurs to follow their dreams and take advantage of today’s technology in carving a niche for themselves.