Women's Day 2018: 8 Indian Women Entrepreneurs SaleBhai Is Proud To Work With
Women’s Day is celebrated to empower women in all settings – be it rural or urban – and takes a step forward towards gender parity.
We’re using this day to shine light on some of the most amazing Indian women entrepreneurs with whom SaleBhai is fortunate enough to work with. We are proud of their achievements.
According to Global Gap Gender Report 2017, the global gender gap will take 100 years to close, compared to 83 last year. That’s why there’s an urgent call to seriously give the power of entrepreneurship to women in order to drive change economically and socially on a global level. This would also help unleash the limitless potential of women and they would be able to stand financially independent.
We’ve seen women in India stepping out of the regular role of being a homemaker and forging new ways of working. Below is a list of eight fantastic women entrepreneurs who may have started small but have achieved newer heights for themselves. Let’s get inspired.
1.Dr. Bhaswati Bhattacharyya and Archita Bhattacharyya, Kolaj
The exceptionally talented mother-daughter duo of Dr. Bhaswati Bhattacharyya and Archita Bhattacharyya decided to break free from the social taboos and spark the creative streak within them. Archita says, “Women have a hidden treasure of talents buried under social taboos. To become successful in this world, women need to be really badass and follow their passion.”
Their brand – Kolaj – takes inspiration from the kolaj artform – where the finest of all crafts are brought together to bring out a whole new piece of stunning artwork. In just a short span, all the incessant coaxing and cajoling by friends led them to their much-awaited entrepreneurial debut in 2016 in Hooghly.
Archita mentions how her mother always used to say, “Never be self-satisfied because success has no limit. Always try to grow higher and higher.”
2.Sunita Jaju and Swati Maheshwari, Rustic Art
Sunita Jaju and Swati Maheshwari, who founded Rustic Art in 2011 are making a fundamental social impact in rural India – the products offered by this setup are handcrafted by rural women.
“The inspiration behind Rustic Art was the fact that we used natural substitutes for soap and laundry at our home. We were never able to easily find high-quality organic personal care products in the market. So, we usually made our own at home. However, that’s not possible for everyone who might be interested in organic products. So, we realised there was a need that we could fill. That’s how we started out initially with a line of organic soaps”, says Sunita Jaju.
Many big brands have approached them, offering to sell their products in bulk under their name and they also have suppliers trying to sell them chemical ingredients. But, they have decided to adhere to the motive with which they started their journey – to stay organic.
When we asked them if their journey had something to teach them so far, this is what they had to say, “I would say success and failure is a function of many elements, some within your control and some out of your control. However, if you can find meaning in what you do, that’s all that matters. It’s important to work hard and go to bed feeling satisfied that you did something that you are proud of.”
Did we tell you they also won MIG Best First Generation Women Entrepreneur Award 2015? They offer us a breath of fresh air in this machine-dependent modern society.
3.Manjri Das, Manjri Madhubani Arts
Manjri Das is one of India’s women entrepreneurs who has in the truest sense tried to step out of the conventional zone of being a homemaker and found ways to ensure a source of income, while working from home. She is an artist who carries the experience of 20-22 years in the field of painting.
Having grown up in Bihar, she took to the regional art of Madhubani painting easily, though her skills were further honed with a year-long training at a prestigious art school in her youth. She is an award-winning Madhubani painter who established her own banner, ‘Manjri Madhubani Arts’ in 1995.
She says, “There are uncertainties involved with this work. There are times when I don’t get much order for my paintings. But when I do, I’ve trained a team of 10-15 artists under me to help me secure my order in bulk on time.”
She also displays her paintings at exhibitions organised by the government. She hasn’t left any stone unturned towards turning her passion into a profession and making something out of it for herself and her family.
4.Priyanka Singh, Sweet Life
Priyanka is the sole mastermind behind Sweet Life – baking magical dishes since 2016. She is a homemaker who turned into a full-time baker.
“I’m an M.tech and I’ve always wanted to work but since I got married and had kids, I had to stay back for a while because kids are a big responsibility. When they grew up, I had free time to spare and so I enjoyed baking for kids and see them smiling. Initially it started with baking only for friends and family, but eventually, I decided to turn it into a profession when I got calls from my clients saying their kids were really happy with my cakes. This was the mood lifter for me.”
There are times when she has to stay awake the whole night to complete her order but she still feels as fresh as a daisy the next day. She says if you enjoy doing what you do, you don’t feel any kind of stress. And that’s her mantra for success.
5. Pragati Lakra, Woods and Petals Herbals
Pragati Lakra had a corporate job at ITC before she decided to quit and begin her own brand ‘Woods and Petals Herbals’ in 2014. “I wanted to opt out of the rat race and do something which is much more meaningful rather than drawing salary every month.”
She ensures that all ingredients for her products are sourced from women only, especially tribes belonging to the most remote regions of Himachal, Jharkhand, and the Northeast. “I myself belong to the tribal belt of Jharkhand, so the cause of the tribal women was much closer to my heart as I’ve seen them through my childhood – how poverty hits them and other things. That’s how it began for me, I thought of bringing them on the mainstream and engage them in certain things thereon. We procure the ingredients from them and the more we procure the more employment they get which means income for them.”
It is her conscious attempt to encourage marginalised women to be part of an exciting journey and help sustain their families. Salebhai.com has furthered this noble cause by showcasing her products and helping her empower women by generating more jobs.
6.Pallavi Gupta, Nutty Yogi
Pallavi Gupta is the founder and current owner of Nutty Yogi, which delivers wholesome food without any compromise on quality or flavour. She liked the idea of taking a risk and making things happen, and that’s how she decided to undertake this entrepreneurial journey.
Before starting her enterprise, she carried a rich experience in the food industry and in managing large food chains. She derived the idea for this enterprise by taking inspiration from her grandmother’s kitchen – from old cookbooks and recipes – where taste and nutrition went hand in hand.
“I have always wanted to be on my own destined path and lead through example. The whole high of developing a proposition and going through the everyday struggles to make it work is my way of doing things. The struggle for an entrepreneur never ends. It’s an ongoing thing. That is the spirit of entrepreneurship.”
She further says, “It's a matter of hustling. It's pure hustling. It’s getting out there and meeting people, making things happen. More and more of hustling you do, more you get better at it.”
7.Sanchita Bajaj, Gourmet Medleys
An economics graduate with a postgraduate degree in computers, Sanchita Bajaj started her entrepreneurial journey by taking a dive into the education industry first and in the same year, she got a chance to exhibit wheat papris (fried) at someone’s stall. That’s how the idea for her second venture ‘Gourmet Medleys’ swept in. She started her enterprise in 2014 in Gurgaon.
“As I worked on it, I remembered and realised that providence had guided me here many years ago (which was long forgotten). Thus slowly a path started to open up and we now have a menu of titbits & munchies; of medleys that don’t meddle with your health!”
She says, “Being a spiritually inclined person and having an aversion to processed food as my own food choices - it was natural to make a menu of natural snacks free of additives and creating a line of snacks not available otherwise. It gave vent to my creative abilities.”
She would like to reach every home that is conscientious about food, and make the ones who aren’t, shift to healthier snacking.
8.Pallavi Ved, Velvet Fine Chocolates
Pallavi Ved was a banker before she turned into a chocolatier six years ago. She founded ‘Velvet Fine Chocolates’ – which serves premium, handcrafted chocolates.
“It was a big deal for me to quit my well-paying corporate job to start something of my own without domain knowledge. But I had always dreamt of having my own chocolate factory. We started in a very small way from home and built the business bit by bit. We faced many up and downs but each was a learning for us. We acquired a lot of large and small customers over the years and now we are setting up our factory of launch our retail products across India”, says Pallavi.
What began as a modest venture for her is today a brand representing a line of exquisite, premium chocolates and truffles. When we asked her if she has any piece of advice to give out to aspiring entrepreneurs out there, this is what she had to say, “It is very important to have a vision and also your product should have a USP to succeed in the long term. Clearly laid down goals keep you focused so that any short-term failures don’t deter you.”
There’s so much to watch and learn from them. Don’t you agree?
International Women’s Day is observed on March 8 every year to celebrate the achievements of women and recognise their efforts. Empowering women is taking a step towards diminishing the gender gap which would contribute towards the progress of nations.
Please note that this list is in no particular order and those featured here are the ones with whom we were able to get in touch in order to get an insight into their stories.
So, has any of these Indian women entrepreneurs mentioned above triggered your inner spirit? Get bold and fearless, it’s time you take a leap towards your dreams.
Let us know what you think of this article. We shall love to hear from you.
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