A young Kiwi-Indian techie, Ashutosh Sharma, is among four recipients of 2017 International Leadership Award announced today by the Minister for Youth, Nikki Kaye.

“This award supports outstanding young New Zealanders to access an international opportunity to develop their own leadership skills, and in turn support the development of other young people,” Ms Kaye says.

The announcement of the award was news to Mr Sharma who was boarding a plane to Australia to pitch his venture to few angel investors when The Indian Weekender contacted him earlier today to speak about the award.

“To be honest, I was surprised and did not see it coming,”

“My focus is bigger than the award.

“I feel happy, and my parents feel happy as well but what I want to focus is on how to make an impact on the lives of other people through various medium,”  Mr Sharma told The Indian Weekender.

Mr Sharma has built a maths Q&A app called Extreme Math before starting up ARCOM NZ, which makes new technology accessible to people, develops holographic software for business and has also been developing a social good app for people who are deaf and mute. 

However, ARCOM NZ is not the only start-up enunciated by this tech wizard in the community.

Mr Sharma’s social media profile says that he is the founder of Share My Garage, Sell My Good, Co-Founder of Free Will, Founder of Memes 98, Partner at Gamestation, along with being Founder and CEO of Sell My Good – his first website.

The profile post quotes Mr Sharma saying “Sell My good was the very first website that I wrote when I was 11 years old.

“I launched the website when I was 13 years. This website was like a trading platform for computers buy and sell.

Sell my good has reached 1 million users in 14 days of launch. Recently Mr Sharma has re-launched this website and has since experienced rapid growth. 

Sell my good aims to hit 1 billion dollars in transaction value and estimate a gross merchandise value of over $1billion.

As part of the award, the recipients will travel to China from 16 to 23 September, where they will take part in the Follow the Footsteps of Rewi Alley Programme in Shenzhen.

“A big focus of the International Leadership Award is the sharing of insights gained overseas with local young people,” Ms Kaye says.

“Recipients of the inaugural International Leadership Award visited China as part of a Ministerial delegation last year, and returned with a deeper understanding of innovation, technology and entrepreneurship in a country with a burgeoning startup scene,” Ms Kaye says.

The other recipients of 2017 International Leadership award are April McLennan (Christchurch), Stephanie Benseman (Wellington), Rees Vinsen (Auckland).

Mr Sharma is of Fiji-Indian descent, born in Fiji and educated in Auckland Grammer School.