First things first, condolences to the family of VG Siddhartha, a remarkable entrepreneur of our time. 
The CCD story was a quintessential desi story of our time and B-school students around the globe learnt from the case study. Harvard business school -|| IIM - || IBS - || DSIM - || Others on
Given the success of CCD and Siddhartha’s business acumen in creating a brand and franchise from ground-up, most of us are wondering what went so wrong that he had to take his own life? While the media and digerati speculate, here are a few thoughts on running a business in India
- The topic of taking on debt, ( ) is perennial staple in B-schools and among business leaders and consultants. Good debt is exemplified in the old adage "it takes money to make money." However, when a business faces headwinds, the debt can turn “bad” very fast, and can be lethal.
- In before Siddhartha, wen missing, he had said that "tremendous pressure" from other lenders had made him succumb to the situation.
- Businesses periodically undergo financial stress. Some of the stress rubs on the founders, owners and business leaders.
- For example, another charismatic Indian entrepreneur Kiran-Mazumdar-Shaw was , “The hopelessness he seems to be indicating in his letter on financial stress is a real problem. And the way the stakeholders of the financial sector are dealing with business and dealing with entrepreneurs seems to be what the problem is.”
- Fates of Business, government and society are intertwined in India.
- Fate of many business leaders are closely aligned with their political sponsors. The government (ruling party) of the day uses IT raids as a tool to control/manage opponents. This can be exacerbated when there is some impropriety and business leaders think they can skirt some regulations or rules.
- VG Siddhartha was the son-in-law of S. M. Krishna, the former Chief Minister of Karnataka, Indian Minister for External Affairs and Governor of Maharashtra. In a recent letter, Siddhartha alleged ‘harassment’ from Income Tax authorities ( )
Psychologists who study human behavior describe the fight-or-flight response (also called hyperarousal, or the acute stress response) as a physiological reaction that occurs in response to a perceived harmful event, attack, or threat to survival. Human reaction to crisis is highly subjective. Some high-flying business leaders likeand chose flight, by literally flying out of the country when faced with financial doom.
In Siddhartha’s case, he seems to have Fought back for a while, before taking Flight to a lethal extreme.
[reposted on Quora]