We are friends to 100 but strangers to 10000000 and more. Despite being strangers, we unknowingly share many things and thoughts in common. SahiBanda’s work is to make quirky & witty designs based on this commonality which aims to unite the youth of our country, along with bringing smiles to many. In addition, their designs give strong messages for the betterment and upliftment of the society/individual.
College life has always been fascinating for us and we enjoyed the journey of the corporate world too. SahiBanda provides all sorts of solution for employee engagement in corporate and college fests through merchandising. They want to send a strong message through their designs.
In conversation with us is Tirthankar Gupta, Founder of SahiBanda.
Tell us a bit about your background and the path that ultimately led you towards Sahi Banda.
I belong to North-Eastern state Tripura. I have completed my B.tech in Mechanical Engineering from GMRIT, Visakhapatnam in 2010. After completing my degree I opted to work for A2Z group, Gurgaon. I worked for 1 year.
The cubicle life was safe and cozy but somewhere the adventure was missing. In 2012,I resigned within a two day in notice and with two of my other friends I started an on vehicle advertising company Wheels Media Pvt. Ltd without doing enough market research. Our investor put in a condition to break even within 3 months (:-o) and we couldn’t bring a single business in that grace period. We failed miserably. Our dreams were shattered and we had to go back home with hardly any clue about our future plans. Being a 25 year old, I decided to do something for the same age group wherein I could atleast know about the moves of the target audience. On September 2012,I finally decided to start making quirky and witty graphic t-shirts which portray on uniting the youth of our country. It took me about 3 months to convince my family (who were being constantly insisted by the relatives on dropping the idea of starting up and rather putting me into a 9 to 5 job) for the second time.
“It’s hard to convince them to start something of your own and it’s even harder when your performance in your 1st attempt is as good as No.11th‘s batting performance”
It was my father who believed in me amidst the storm, backed me up &eventually in June, 2013, SahiBanda was founded.
How long did it take to put together Sahi Banda?
Since I hardly had any idea about the garment industry and the retail business (both online and offline) in this very segment, it took me about 5 months to gather the necessary resources for starting up.
What is one mistake you’ve made, and what did you learn from it?
Whatever you’re starting, proper market research is a must. You should know where your product will stand. That’s what I missed in my first startup. Before starting up, you’ll feel the journey to be as smooth as in a National Highway, but once you start up, you’ll get to know that it’s a roller coaster ride. So, be prepared for it.
How extensive is the market that the startup is working in? And who are your competitors?
There is a huge potential in this youth segment because today’s youth generation is active in both online and offline buying segment and a trend has been developed to wear and flaunt with clothes through which they can relate to oneself.
What are your plans for promoting Sahi Banda?
We have stepped onto internet marketing to promote our products. In that we mainly focus on SMO (Social Media Optimization/Social Media Marketing) .Today Social Media marketing is one of the quickest, easiest and economical ways to place your brand in the eyes of internet users. We have been getting good responses through this mode, and we opt to carry on with this in future.
Apart from this we have tied up with 25 retail shops across the country. We also got the opportunity to participate in events like Comic Con which helped us a lot in promoting our staffs to a large number of target audiences.
Do you have any new features in the pipeline?
We are planning to come up with more customized fashion accessories under our own brand and are on the verge of introducing special & unique employee engagement programs for corporate through merchandising. We are trying to cater to more colleges and institutions in India.We are also launching exclusive women empowerment merchandise from the month of April.
Where do you see Sahi Banda after 5 years?
After 5 years, we want to see SahiBanda t-shirts in 50% of our country’s youth’s wardrobe J
If not for Sahi Banda, where would you be now?
I would have been stuck somewhere in a cubicle thinking to start SahiBanda someday 😛
What one piece of advice would you give to soon to be startup founders?
If you are planning to start up, pull your socks up, and get into action. The worst thing that can happen is that you’ll FAIL.
F.A.I.L – Fighting Attitude In Life.
Don’t give up ‘FIGHTING’. Learn from your failures, re-strategize and move on.
For me, the 3 months that I have spent with my first startup boosted me up the most and made my journey easier for the second one.
Thanks Trithankar! Funny quirky and unique merchandise that can lighten and brighten anyone’s day. Do visit their website and order for some funky items.
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