Essex graduate who brokered deal between Indian tech giants wins Vice-Chancellor Award

  • Date

    Thu 16 Nov 23

Photo of Ankit Mehrota

A leading entrepreneur who went on to broker major deals in India after turning his back on a career in investment banking will be recognised for his outstanding success by receiving a Vice-Chancellor Award.

Ankit Mehrotra will be handed his award during the upcoming graduation ceremony in New Delhi in February, alongside three other winners.

The Vice-Chancellor Award celebrates the achievements and success of Essex graduates and postgraduates who have given back to their communities.

Ankit, who graduated from Essex in 2005 with a BEng Computers and Telecommunications Engineering, went on to work for BP Paribas in London for seven years, before returning to India where he and three friends launched restaurant discovery and tech platform, Dineout.

In his role as co-founder and CEO of Dineout, Ankit helped turn it into the largest dining out and restaurant tech platform in India through the acquisitions in the B2C and B2B space.

In 2022, he went on to lead the successful acquisition of Dineout by Swiggy, India’s largest on-demand delivery platform.

The deal saw Dineout purchased for $200million. Ankit is now investing his own money in start-up businesses in India and offering his expertise under the Angel Investor Scheme.

He is also working with Indian cricketer Shikhar Dhawan on setting up a bharat focused celebrity investment fund, the first of its kind in India.

Ankit said: “I am pleasantly surprised, honoured and humbled to have been both nominated and to have won this award.

“Essex taught me not to fear failure and instead test boundaries.

“This is what made me leave my career in investment banking in London in 2011 and take the next step in being an entrepreneur.”

Essex Vice-Chancellor, Professor Anthony Forster, who will personally hand Ankit his award, said: “Ankit embodies the Essex Spirit of pushing boundaries and being bold. He made a brave choice to quit a successful investment career to take the next step as an entrepreneur but has achieved incredible success since then.

“His innovative ideas have seen him leading significant business deal and it is inspiring to see Ankit now sharing his expertise and knowledge with start-up firms, supporting the next generation of business disruptors, just as we do through our Essex Startups team.

“It will be an honour and pleasure to present Ankit with his award at our graduation ceremony in India.”

Other winners of the Vice-Chancellor Award being recognised at February’s graduation include Sanchita Ain and Manish Michael.

More information about the ceremony, which takes place at the Andaz Delhi Hotel on Sunday 18 February, is available via our dedicated events page.