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Wisdom Stories Ep.48: Jayesh Parekh

Cultural expectations surrounding the elderly are being challenged today, and with good reason!

While it was the norm to slow down and retreat into a quieter life post-retirement, more men and women are finding purpose and joy in doing the opposite.

WisdomCircle honours such men and women by shining light on their journey through an inspiring series called “Wisdom Stories”. These people have successfully smashed stereotypes, and their stories remind us that life should be lived to the fullest, no matter what age or stage.

I have been Co-Founder of Sony Entertainment Television, and Managing Partner at Jungle Ventures, a Pan-Asian Venture Capital technology fund based in Singapore. Currently, I am Managing Partner at Good Protein Fund, a cross-border, multi-stage fund focused on driving innovation and growth in the alternative protein sector.

I spent 12 years at IBM in Houston (USA) and Singapore and was part of the IBM Offshore team that brought IBM back to India.

We interviewed Jayesh Parekh, one of the honourees of 58 Over 58, a collaborative endeavour spearheaded by WisdomCircle and INK. The mission is to spotlight the narratives of 58 remarkable individuals annually, individuals who are meaningfully engaged in their post-retirement phase.

Image of Jayesh Prakash

What was a key moment that defined your current path?

Flip from a professional career to an entrepreneurial journey played a significant role in defining my current path.

 How would you define your purpose? And why did you choose it?

I was drawn to Social impact investing and philanthropy. Today I am an Advisor to Akhand Jyoti Eye Hospital in Bihar, which focuses on health care and within that, eye care. There is a high need of such services in low-income states like Bihar.

What is your flex today?

I tried to retire twice, unsuccessfully. I have kept myself relevant by staying engaged with the world around me. I feel that the need of the hour is for protein food security in the next 2 decades, and therefore I have decided to focus on the Alternative Protein industry.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Take risks and work on purposeful social entrepreneurship.

What are the current gaps in the post retirement eco-system? Where is the pressing need for attention?

Today we have a runway of 25 years more post-retirement. This begs the question – what would professionals, businessmen and entrepreneurs do for the remaining 25 years?

What would your advice be to the WisdomCircle?

You are already working on the solution to what one will do with “25 years more” – keep it up.

Why is leaving a legacy important for you? What would you like yours to be?

“I don’t want any legacy – once I’m gone, I’m done”.

3 words that describe your life right now.

Happiness, grandkids, travel.

Read more Wisdom Stories on WisdomCircle

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