Young entrepreneurs are starting up in areas unheard of. For instance, fashion segment which was once considered the domain of women is slowly giving way to men. And betting big on this shift is Bhuvan Bansal, who has founded Naughty Strands.
Sharing the concept of business, Bansal says, “Fashion conscious women want clothes that fit them well and they want a good deal of variety. I found a huge gap in terms of fast fashion which was not available in India time at affordable prices. So there was Zara, Mango which cost Rs 2,500 or more, then Chemistry was in the range of Rs 1200-1300.But if you are looking for something like Zara in the Rs 900-1000 price point, there was nothing. The Rs 900-1000 price point is what Indian women normally prefer buying things for regular wear and there was a gap there. Nothing was available in that space, either online or offline.”
Bhuvan has completed his graduation and is pursuing his post-graduation course in MBA. What he believes is formal training and education in specialized domain is not required in a particular discipline to startup, if you are chasing your passion. He has not undergone training in design or fashion. The first challenge he encountered was convincing family members of his dream venture, but he was surprised to find that they were actually quite supportive. He says, “motivation and strong desire to follow your dreams make anyone to take up entrepreneurship”.
Based in Chandigarh, the company started in August 2013. Today the startup has a team of 8 people managing affairs, and most of the team members like its customers are under the age of 30. “It is a very hungry and dynamic team. There are pros and cons with the team, but there is so much to do and go to the next level that they all have enough things to deal with. All our products are hand tailored and delivered to any part of India within a week. As of now we are selling only through the online portal.” says Bansal.
A bootstrapped success
Being bootstrapped and showing significant growth is a sign of a good company. And a good company is a sign of a knowledgeable entrepreneur. Bansal says, “We’ve spent a lot of money in the backend of the business, like our supply chain, logistics and our delivery system. We source fabrics from local mills and import mainly from China. We’ve got our local courier partners and we’re known for our quick delivery. We use Blue Dart primarily for all our courier needs ascertaining that the customer receives the product in stipulated time. A lot of this money, is reinvested in bettering the business, he adds. Most of the marketing is mainly word of mouth.”
Bhuvan concludes by saying, “I’m not trying to take on the Myntras and the Flipkarts of the world, because we can’t. If you want to enter a dense market, you’ve got to enter with a different model. That’s what we did and it’s working for us.” He shared that the Naughty Strands is looking to raise their first round of funding in the near future for their expansion plans.