Ananya Birla

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Ananya Birla
Ananya Birla Mpower Fest (cropped).jpg
Birla in 2018
Background information
Born (1994-07-17) 17 July 1994 (age 25)
Mumbai, India
  • Singer
  • Songwriter
  • Activist
  • Entrepreneur
Years active2016 – present
LabelsUniversal Music India

Ananya Birla (/əˈnænjə ˈbɜːrlə/, born 17 July 1994) is an Indian singer, songwriter, entrepreneur and mental health advocate.[1]

In 2016, Birla signed with Universal Music India [2]. Her first five songs hit the 150 million mark on streaming platforms,[3] with singles “ Meant To Be” [4] “Livin the Life” “Hold On”, “Circles” and “Better” achieving platinum status.[5] Ananya is the first Indian artist with an English language single to go platinum in India.[6]

She released her debut EP “Fingerprint” in May 2019, via UMG and Island Records UK.[7] It included “Blackout” Featuring Vector and Wurld, which was one of the first collaborations between major artists from India and Nigeria.[8]

Birla is the founder of Svatantra Microfin, a company that provides microfinance to women in rural India.[9] She is also the founder of CuroCarte[10] and cofounder of Mpower.[11] Birla has received awards for her work and entrepreneurship, including the ET Panache Trendsetters of 2016 award for Young Business Person[12] and was listed as one of GQs Most Influential Indians of 2018.[13]

She is also the daughter of Kumar Mangalam Birla, an Indian industrialist and the chairman of the Aditya Birla Group.[14]me

Early life[edit]

Ananya Birla developed an interest in music at an early age, learning to play the santoor at the age of eleven.[15] She studied economics and management at Oxford University for her bachelor's degree, but dropped out without completing her degree.[16]


Music career[edit]

While at university, Birla started singing and playing the guitar at pubs and clubs. She also began writing her own music.[17]Her debut single, "Livin’ the Life", was co-written, and produced, by JimBeanz (who previously collaborated with Nelly Furtado, Cheryl Tweedy and Demi Lovato) and was recorded and produced at a studio in Philadelphia.[18] A remix by Dutch DJ Afrojack of "Livin’ the Life" makes Birla the first Indian artiste to get a worldwide release through PM:AM Recordings and hit over 14 millions views on YouTube as of June 2017.[19][20] Her songs have been topping the music charts in 2019.

She released her next single "Meant to be" in July 2017 which was subsequently certified Platinum as per the Indian Music Industry (IMI) recognised criteria for certifications. This makes Birla the first Indian artiste with an English single to go platinum.[21] In January 2017, she supported Coldplay at the Global Citizen Festival.[22]

She released her single "Hold On" on 1 March 2018.[23] On 7 June 2018, she released her fourth single "Circles".[24] On 17 Jan 2019, she realeasd her 5th single and 1st song of 2019 "Better", which was viewed 4 million times on YouTube within 2 day of its release.[25]

Business career[edit]

Birla founded Svatantra Microfin at the age of 17. The organisation makes small loans to women entrepreneurs based in rural India. Under her leadership, Svatantra won the Gold Award for Best Start-Up (Skoch Financial Inclusion and Deepening Awards, 2014), Spirituality @ Work: Sach Bharat Samman (Sach Bharat Confluence 2015) and has maintained a quality loan portfolio, offering one of the lowest interest rates in the country.[26]

In 2016, Birla became the founder and CEO of CuroCarte, an inventory-based global luxury e-Commerce platform.[10] The same year, Forbes named her one of Asia's Women to Watch.[27]

Campaign work[edit]

While in England, Birla became aware of a student helpline that supported young people suffering from anxiety and depression.[28] After university, she returned to India and, along with her mother, set up a mental health initiative called MPower aiming to stamp out the stigma towards people with mental illness across India. MPower is also responsible for opening a treatment centre for children suffering from mental health conditions.[29]

Personal life[edit]

Birla is the eldest child of the sixth richest Indian - Kumar Mangalam Birla (Chairman of Aditya Birla Group) and Neerja Birla and the sixth generation scion of the Birla family.



  • Fingerprint (2019)


  • "Livin' the Life" (2016)
  • "Meant to Be" (2017)
  • "Circles" (2018)
  • "Hold On" (2018)
  • "Blackout" feat. WurID & Vector (2019)
  • "Better" (2019)
  • "Unstoppable" (2019)
  • "Disappear" (2019)


  1. ^ "Ananya Birla Talks the Rise of Pop Music In India, Her New Song 'Unstoppable' & Female Empowerment". Billboard. 5 April 2019.
  2. ^ "Ananya is India's newest musician on the block". Vogue India. 11 November 2016.
  3. ^ "Platinum-Selling & Universal Music Singer Songwriter Releases Song, An Ode To Women Power". Music Press Asia. 1 May 2019.
  4. ^ "Ananya Birla's 'Meant to be' certified platinum". Business Standard. 28 November 2017.
  5. ^ "Ananya's 'Unstoppable' featuring Mary Kom, Sania Mirza, Juhi Chawla is about women empowerment". 12 April 2019.
  6. ^ "Ananya Birla's 'Meant to be' certified platinum". Indo Asian News Service. 4 May 2019.
  7. ^ "Interview: Ananya Birla". 19 May 2019.
  8. ^ Thomson, Zangba (19 May 2019). "Ananya Birla releases a lyric video for her "Blackout" single featuring Vector & WurlD". Bong.
  9. ^ Chaudhary, Deepti (29 October 2015). "Ananya Birla: Her father's daughter". Forbes India.
  10. ^ a b "Ananya Birla ventures into luxury ecommerce business with CuroCarte". Forbes India. 8 September 2016.
  11. ^ "MPower urges India to #StampOutStigma on mental health". Campaign India. 19 February 2016.
  12. ^ "ET Panache Trendsetter Awards 2016: Ananya Birla wins the Trendsetting Young Business Person Award". The Economic Times. 25 October 2016.
  13. ^ "GQ's 50 Most Influential Young Indians of 2018". GQ India. 5 December 2018.
  14. ^ "Birla heiress hits the high note with musical debut". The Hindu BusinessLine. 25 October 2016.
  15. ^ "Birla heiress hits the high note with musical debut". The Hindu BusinessLine. 25 October 2016.
  16. ^ "Meet India's Young & Successful Heiresses". Pursuitist.
  17. ^ "Ananya Birla is India's newest musician on the block". Vogue India. 11 November 2016.
  18. ^ "Ananya Birla launched a single in collaboration with Afrojack and Jim Beanz". Hindustan Times. 14 November 2016.
  19. ^ "'I love making history'". Deccan Herald. 13 March 2017.
  20. ^ "Livin' the Life by Ananya Birla (Afrojack remix)". YouTube.
  21. ^ "Ananya Birla's 'Meant to be' certified platinum". 28 November 2017.
  22. ^ "Coldplay Concert Live Updates: Global Citizen Festival has an all star lineup". 29 January 2017.
  23. ^ "English music is my calling: Ananya Birla". 24 March 2018.
  24. ^ "Singer-entrepreneur Ananya Birla releases her fourth single 'Circles'". The Economic Times. 11 June 2018. Retrieved 20 June 2018.
  25. ^ "Ananya Birla Biography, Education, Music, Videos – The Official Website". Retrieved 19 January 2019.
  26. ^ "Ananya Birla paves her own path". IndianCEO. 27 September 2016.
  27. ^ "Asia's Women to Watch 2016". Forbes.
  28. ^ "What's in a name: I want to build my own legacy says Ananya Birla". India Today. 13 May 2016.
  29. ^ "Mpower homepage". Retrieved 23 January 2017.

External links[edit]