Zerodha's Nikhil Kamath Opens Up Why He Doesn't Have Children: 'Going To Ruin...'

The 37-year-old entrepreneur revealed he doesn’t subscribe to the traditional idea

In a recent episode of his podcast, WTF, Zerodha co-founder Nikhil Kamath discussed his views on parenthood. He mentioned that the traditional idea of having children to carry on a legacy doesn’t resonate with him. He prioritises his current pursuits and doesn’t feel the need to dedicate a significant portion of his life to raising a child.

“This is also partly why I don’t have kids,” Mr Kamath said. “I’m going to ruin 18-20 years of my life babysitting this child and then if luck serves me right, the reverse will happen at some point. What if he says ‘scr** you’ at 18 and leave anyway.”

When the topic of legacy came up, the 37-year-old entrepreneur revealed he doesn’t subscribe to the traditional idea of leaving one behind. “I think we all feel that we are more important than we are… you are born and you die like every other animal on the planet and then you are gone and nobody remembers anybody,” he said.

Nikhil Kamath further explained that having children solely to ensure he’s remembered after death doesn’t align with his values. “What’s the point in being remembered (after death)? I feel like you should come, you should live well, you should be nice to the people you meet in your life,” he said.

Demonstrating his dedication to social good, Zerodha co-founder Nikhil Kamath became the youngest Indian signatory to The Giving Pledge last year. This prestigious initiative unites philanthropists who commit a majority of their wealth to charitable causes. Mr Kamath credits fellow Bengaluru entrepreneurs and pledgers, Infosys co-founder Nandan Nilekani, Biocon founder Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, and Wipro founder Azim Premji, as a source of inspiration for his own philanthropic journey.

“So, there are four people in India who have signed The Giving Pledge — the other three happen to be really good friends of mine. And Bangaloreans will resonate with this — all of them are from Bangalore. All four of us are friends. Me and Kiran live in the same apartment… we all tend to meet once in a month for dinner or travel together,” Mr Kamath said. 

When asked about his decision to dedicate a majority of his wealth to philanthropy, Zerodha co-founder Nikhil Kamath pointed to the influence of his fellow philanthropists in Bengaluru, particularly those who are also signatories of The Giving Pledge. Witnessing their dedication to social good inspired him to maximize the positive impact of his own wealth.  He expressed a preference for directing his resources towards causes he values rather than accumulating wealth for the future.

“I think everybody should realise the importance and understand the concept of mortality… I am 37 and if the average lifespan of an Indian is 72 years old, I have 35 years left. There is no value in leaving money in the banks… so I would rather give it to things I believe in. So rather than leaving the money I have earned in the last 20 years and what I would earn in the next 20 years to a bank or institution like that… I would rather make the most of it,” Mr Kamath said.