Who is Manoj Bhargava?

Sakeeb Satter

Manoj Bhargava
Manoj Bhargava

Manoj Bhargava is an Indian American businessman and philanthropist who has given 90% of his wealth towards many great causes, and also pledged to give 99% of his money in 2015 for philanthropic causes. Charities and programs he’s funded include free lunches at underprivileged schools and teaching women how to take care of themselves in businesses. Manoj Bhargava also heads foundations such as The Hans Foundation and Rural India Supporting Trust. And, he has earned a billion dollars in sales from a product he invented. Figured it out yet? Have you heard of 5- Hour ENERGY? Well, Manoj Bhargava is the founder and CEO of the 5- Hour ENERGY company. There are many wealthy people out there who, in my opinion, aren’t doing the most they can with their money for the benefit of others.

Bhargava was born in Lucknow, India, and moved to United States as a teenager. He lived in an impoverished neighborhood in Philadelphia. His family rented a house for $80 a month and used to split a coca cola for four people as a treat. He attended a prestigious boarding school, Hill School, and excelled in mathematics early in his academic career. He was a student at Hill School before going to Princeton. He dropped out of Princeton after one year, because he didn’t find himself fit for the lifestyle of a Princeton student. He also didn’t find the learning challenging enough. So, he dropped out without getting a college degree. Afterwards, Bhargava didn’t get any job offers he wanted. Manoj did some office work and construction jobs. He did these jobs until he went back to India and became an ashram monk.

After a decade in India he ended up permanently moving to America to help his parents’ plastics business. He wasn’t enthusiastic about running the family business. So he used the business and his skills to buy manufacturing plants and make them more efficient. He then sold the company in 2006 for $20 million, and went into the energy drink business. He made a huge success in his business. He funds many projects in order to help the world around him.


Manoj Bhargava constantly works towards a better future for people in need of water and electricity. He had a team invent a hybrid bicycle. Basically, if you pedal this bicycle for an hour you will have electricity for 24 hours. They call this, “Free electricity.” In many other countries electricity isn’t stable. Even in the U.S. the electricity can go out after a natural disaster. There isn’t  any pollution being produced by this machine. He also recognizes the need of water everywhere. A project called Rainmaker, which turns seawater or any dirty water into drinkable water. The Rainmaker can make a thousand gallons per hour. This is efficient for people who have trouble getting drinking water on a regular basis. This could help places like California that suffer drought problems. He is always looking for inventions that could change the world and chooses to help the project by funding them and hiring people to work in them. These inventions could eventually change how the world runs.
Being an ashram monk, he learned that excessive consumption can harm you, while a simple life could have you better off. He doesn’t even have a second house, because he already has, “Enough problems with his first house.” He believes that if you have wealth, then it is your obligation to help those who are in need. These goals he has developed aren’t just for himself, but for the benefit of others. If there were more billionaires like Manoj Bhargava, then maybe our world would be easier to live in.