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Early Retirement Success Story – How He Saved 12 Crores in His 30s | Fix Your Finance Ep 36

If you want to retire early, then this video
is for you. Today we'll meet a man who has a corpus of
more than 10 crores and has managed to retire completely before
the age of 40. We will learn how to start planning, how to
do the calculations for early retirement and what all things to keep in mind before
leaving your job. So watch this video till the end and to support
our channel, like the video right now. FIX YOUR FINANCE Hello and welcome to a new episode of Fix
Your Finance. Today I have Ravi Handa with me. Welcome to the show Ravi. Glad to be here. How's early retirement treating you? It has its good parts obviously. What are the good parts? You can spend time on things which you were
not able to do earlier. And what are some of the bad parts of retiring
early? You lose a lot of value and a lot of validation
that you used to get from a job.

You have described your retired life in 2023. Let's take it back to like 15-16 years back. So, what did you study? I have done engineering in computer science. And what was your first job? Where did you start working? I started working in the education sector
itself. I joined IMS Calcutta which is a CAT coaching
company. Okay. And what was your first paycheck? 25,000 odd rupees. When you retired in 2022, what were you doing
back then? Actually, before that, I used to run a business
from 2012 to 2021. Which was in the education sector. My company was acquired by Unacademy. So, the last 1-1.5 years of my working career, I was with Unacademy as director content sales. So, how many years did you work? I worked from 2006 to 2010.

Then I took a year break. 2011 is when I got married. 2011 is when I joined this IT company called
Mindtical. What was the trigger to start your own thing? When I was working for IMS, at that point of time itself, I started making educational videos on YouTube
around 2008. Gradually, they became popular. Not very popular. And this was CAT coaching for MBA? CAT coaching. First, I started with math. Then I went to GK through math. Then to LRDI, then to English. I kept on expanding. And how was the business? How did it work? Business was profitable from day one. Because there was no expense. Yes. In today's date, the cost of videos or ads
in EdTech has gone astronomically. In 2012, it was extremely simple. Because I don't think anyone was doing it. Or even if anyone was doing it, they were not such a big player that you cannot
really compete. On an average, what was the kind of profits
or salary that you guys were drawing? We had good years when we did revenues of
3 crores as well.

We had bad years when we did revenues of 25
lakhs as well. There was massive fluctuation. In 2021, your company got acquired. Correct. It got acquired and then there was that vesting
period wherein you had to work. Correct. And after that, you got an exit. Correct. So, were you actively looking for an exit? Yes. Again, I am telling you the same. So, during the COVID period of 2020, my wife was pregnant at that point of time, So, my wife and I used to sit and chat about
what to do with life. And this is what emerged that we have to sell the business at whatever valuation possible, whatever sort
of deal you get. Because getting out of business is the priority. After selling the company, there will be a
vesting period wherein you were working with Unacademy. Correct. What was your compensation then? Exact numbers I can't reveal because of the
NDA. But my salary was a little above 1 cr. And the ESOPs of the vesting, that was another additional 50 lakhs or a
little more than that.

Wow! So, you have a lot of money in Edtech, I am
guessing. Yes. But I didn't get this for my skill or my talent. Okay. This I got primarily because they were acquiring
my company and this is a way for them to pay out the
money slowly rather than on day one. What is your background? Which college did you study in? IIT Kharagpur. Did that also help in your, you know, starting your entrepreneurial journey? Absolutely. I am telling you, there are a few things which have helped me a lot in life. To take risks, to experiment. One, my parents were always independent. I have never had to give a single rupee to
my parents. The second thing which has really helped me
is my wife was very well educated and in a very good
job which allowed me to take a lot of risks. The third is that I went to a good college and through that college, you build a network. I have friends in senior positions in multiple
places. This is it. You are the sum of your privilege, your background and the people that you have interacted with over your life.

Okay, so now we will talk about your expenses. Do you live in a rented apartment or is it
an owned? It's an owned flat. I shifted to Jaipur in 2015 to be closer to
my parents and at that point of time, I purchased the
flat that I still live in today. Did you take it on loan or did you pay in
cash? No, it was entirely in cash because at that
point of time, I had been doing business for 2-3 years.

The second thing is your travel. So, do you have a car or do you travel in
cabs? I have a car but I don't really like to drive
that much. So, how much fuel do you spend on a monthly
basis? I have no idea. So, you don't track expenses in general? That way, no. So, The way I track expenses is at the beginning
of the financial year, I check how much money was in the bank account. Throughout the year, I just find out how much
money went out of your bank account. So, that's how I determine how much I spent
this year. So, on an annual basis, how much did you spend
in the last 3 years? Around 2 lakh rupees goes into maintenance.

Society, maintenance plus the other property
that I own. 5-7 lakh rupees is the vacation. Another 2-3 lakhs would be eating out, drinking,
parties. Parties, not the pub parties. Parents' 50th anniversary, the first birthday
of the child. So, all these parties add up. 3 lakhs or a little more than that would go
towards the house help staff. These are the big hits. Now, it is time for the main thing, which is talking about your financial independence
and retirement plans. The first and main thing is figuring out your
FIRE number. How much money would I need to not work and can retire comfortably. So, in which year did you seriously start
thinking about FIRE? Which year? Covid, 2020. 2020 is when I actually sat down and did the
numbers. Where I have this much money, I will put this
money here and there. So, it took me around 3 months, maybe 6 months to figure out how much money I exactly need,
how do I need to invest it. And then it took me a couple of years, 3 years
to execute that. So, if your annual expense is 25 lakhs, if you take a multiple of 30, it is 7.5 cr.

Right? So, what are some of the milestones that you
took into account? There are two major chunks that I have kept. One of them is nearly everyone likes and accepts
that you have to save money for your child's higher
education. So, I have earmarked 50 lakh rupees for that. Wow! I will give it to him at 18 or whatever appropriate
age. 7.5 Cr plus 50L. For this? Yes. 8 cr. Another 50L is what I wanted to keep as a
sort of play money for experiments that I would want to do. Angel investing is one of them. Crypto investments is one of them. I am doing a podcast right now, so it has
its own expenses. Yeah. You should check out his YouTube channel,
okay? Every month, two videos come up specifically
talking about how to achieve FIRE. Okay? There is a link in the description. Definitely subscribe. That is 50 lakhs, your play money. How is that going by the way? Angel investments and other investments? I have lost a lot of money in angel investments. I have lost a little bit of money in crypto
as well.

But the biggest problem in angel investments
is that it is extremely illiquid. There is no honesty. So, I had put 3 lakh rupees in a company in
2019. In 2021, it became 45 lakh rupees. Ravi Handa is happy that it is done. Did you get an exit? Exit? The company closed in 2023. It became zero. Oh shit. So, that is the problem with angel investment. That's why you have allocated an amount which you yourself have called play money. Correct. Any other milestones that you have covered? No, these two. 8.5 cr was your FIRE number. You said that you started investing a huge
amount since 2015. You started investing or saving more. From 2006 to 2015, did you manage to save any portion of your
salary? Yes, we were always saving more than 50-60%. We used to save this much. So, it was business, revenue was high, that's
why you didn't save. It was something which was there. Your expenses were always lower than what
you were earning. So, have you accumulated the 8.5 cr ? A little bit more than that. Very nice. How much percentage of that, if you are comfortable
sharing, how much percentage has come from selling
your company and how much percentage of the proportion
has come from your savings? I would say that selling the company probably
gave me 20-25%.

Which basically means that this was not a
result of a certain event. No, no. So, this was because my business was successful. The second factor was that my expenses were
very low. The third factor was that I always had substantial
investment in equity. The fourth factor is where I would say the
selling of the company comes in. The main money that was made was made by business. And let's say if you were doing your software
job, you would have been in the top positions, In that case, do you think this much wealth
accumulation would have been possible? If I was in India, then no. If I had gone abroad, then I would have been
way ahead of this.

Is that one of those things that you would,
you know, you look back and want to change? I regret it every week. If I had been a good student, if I had studied
in college, then I wouldn't have been in the coaching
line. I would have moved to the US or Canada or
Europe or somewhere after college. I can't believe that you are saying that you are not content with what you have achieved
financially. I am absolutely content with what I have achieved. Because I have bounced back from the mistakes
of not studying in college. Yeah. The 8.5 cr that you have accumulated, that too, what are the percentages where you
have invested? My current net worth would be somewhere between
12-13 cr. Out of this, 1-1.5 crore rupees, which is
my 4-5 years of expenses, I keep it in absolutely liquid low risk investments. So, this is my cash bucket. In the medium term bucket, I have taken a
balance advantage fund. I have long term bonds, gilt funds, which is another 4-5 years of expenses. So, a mix of equity and debt. Third bucket, which is my long term bucket, another, I believe, 6-7 crores would be in
that and then there is a piece of land that I own
which is around 2 cr.

Tell me one thing, how to go about it? Primarily if you are young you need to save,
develop as a habit sort of a thing but your focus should be on making money. Where will you earn money from? Either you will grow in a job or you will
join risky jobs like startups to get ESOPs or you leave the country, you go abroad you
earn a lot more there, you save a lot more there and you come
back and you know you can be in a very good situation or what you do is you get a higher
degree.

Suppose you have done engineering, MBA, Masters
in Engineering, there are plenty of avenues. Your main focus should be on making more and
more and more money. Because after one point your expenses can't
get less. So if you want to increase the alpha, the
difference in income and expenses that will only happen if you are constantly focusing on increasing
the top line. Let's say I have decided that I want to retire
early. What was the framework? What were some of the thought processes? One according to me even hoping for planning
for early retirement is sort of accepting a failure that you couldn't make your career
in your life better that's why you are going towards retirement. Yes financial independence is important, early
retirement is not. If you are in a job that you like, that you
enjoy or I will say if you are in a job or in a career that you don't hate, do not think
about early retirement. Early retirement became important for me because
I wasn't liking what I was doing.

So this is our quick finance round. You have to answer the questions as soon as
possible. If you had an unlimited budget, what would
you gift your wife? Vacation, luxury vacation. If money was out of consideration which in
your case holds true, what would you do for a living? I don't know I will keep experimenting with
it which is what I am doing right now. And the last question is for people who want
to achieve financial independence and you know are seeking early retirement, what are
2-3 nuggets of advice that you would share with them? For financial independence, increasing your
income as much as possible that should be your priority. The second priority should be that bulk of
your savings should go into equity. If you are chasing early retirement, I think
that is a bad chase to have. That should be, that is like surgery, that
should be the last option. Try changing your job, try changing the city
you work in, try changing the country you work in, try changing your careers. If there is no avenue, that is when you think
about early retirement.

Alright, that brings us to the end of the
episode. Thank you so much for sharing your journey. I am sure that a lot of people have learnt
a lot from today's episode and video. Make sure to check out his YouTube channel. Every month at least 2-3 videos are made on
this topic. Subscribe to his channel and if you liked
anything in this video, subscribe to my channel as well. Goodbye..

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