It’s hard to describe the reality of starting a business. An idea that sparked over a year ago led to perpetual discussions and opinions before it actually became a business plan. What came next was a detailed ‘things to do for launch’ agenda that still probably has some unchecked boxes! The most important aspect of the initiative was to find the right brands. India is a remarkable and dynamic country, where globalization has led to significant western influences into our lifestyles. The growing consumer demand and awareness made it a challenging but interesting task to find unique brands and products that we believed would still intrigue our customers.
We started off with intense research to find the ideal brands and initiated the slow process of preliminary discussions and selling the idea of a large untapped market that can offer a tremendous potential. While it was exciting to discuss business relationships with European and North American brands, it was also nerve-wrecking to comprehend the challenges of executing this plan.
It was finally time to visit the suppliers and see the products in person. The trip started off in Paris, which hosts the incredible Maison & Objet fair – an event that is loved by western brands to showcase new designs and discuss evolving consumer trends.
Amazed by the diversity in concepts and styles, the fair was a great opportunity for us to interact with some very creative and talented minds. Day 2 and 3 led to our discovery of some ideal products for our launch, which helped us assure that we were (somewhat) on the right track. Long walks through the exhibition halls and lengthy chats to discuss partnerships - those four days were tiring but undoubtedly inspiring.
Paris was followed by Milan for a couple of days, where we attended the famous Homi Milano exhibition and then it was time to head back home. Reality kicked in that this was finally happening and it was not going to be easy! Everything from foreign remittances, import procedures, website development, warehouse setup – it seemed like an endless list. Few months in, we are finally ready to launch. The 'journey so far' has been full of a few bumps, some sighs, many smiles, and a lot of learning! Hoping for the best for the future now, fingers crossed! Do check out our entire collection!
- Sheena Garg (May 2017)