I’ve dreamed of being an entrepreneur for as long as I can remember. I was working in a corporate job in the accounting field, but I felt I could contribute more by creating opportunities for rural women.
My company, Vrushti Creations, reflects my ambition for entrepreneurship and my passion for designing clothes. I quickly realized that the Mumbai market was saturated with imported and designer clothing, so I set out to create a brand that could stand out. Inspired by the beauty and history of khadi cloth, I launched Shatakshee as a brand under Vrushti Creations in 2017 in Virar, Mumbai.
Shatakshee aims to redefine khadi for today’s world, producing an exhaustive range of apparel in khadi fabric; from kurtis to suits and shirts. What makes us unique is the organic nature of our products and our distinctive designs. We use lab-tested pure organic cotton and handspun fabric, with machine and hand–embroidered finishing. Participating in KVIC exhibitions lets us showcase our designs and reach more customers.
I’ve had to overcome many challenges, of course. As a manufacturing business, we need access to working capital to cover our daily investment in raw materials. We have to meet high quality standards and rely on a skilled workforce. It was initially difficult to train unskilled rural workers. But I helped them to cultivate self-belief and confidence in their craft and encouraged them to realize the importance of self-sufficiency. As a result, 12 of our 14 current employees are rural women.
In October 2020, I attended the virtual launch of the Walmart Vriddhi Panipat e-Institute, where the former Union MSME Minister Nitin Gadkari delivered a live address. This is how I learned about the program.
It’s my belief that every woman should lead and showcase her talent. Being an entrepreneur means having dedication and heart, knowing how to deal with people, and loving and treasuring what you have. Being a woman entrepreneur gives me a feeling of confidence.
When I heard that Walmart was looking for aspirational entrepreneurs like me, I was inspired to connect with the Vriddhi team. The association with Walmart Vriddhi has given me a great opportunity to learn, step by step, how to take my business online.
Walmart Vriddhi has helped me gain a deep understanding of several aspects of running a business, including financing, costing, production, supply chain management, bulk purchasing, and taxation. The pandemic made me realize the importance of an online sales channel, and I thank the Walmart Vriddhi team for helping me onboard my products on Flipkart. We are already getting orders from across the nation and winning praise from consumers.
Our strategy is to take khadi to as many people as we can. In this regard, we are looking for small retailers to expand our distribution. We are also approaching online B2B markets like Flipkart Wholesale. All in all, I’m confident in our growth and envisage that Vrushti Creations will one day become the number one khadi apparel manufacturer in India.