With a curious mind since an early age, Ms. Anugraha Ghale has always been excited to try new ideas with friends and families. Getting the joy in spreading happiness, she used to sell small gag gifts to her close ones when she was only 12. Despite the deviation in recent years from her zeal to do something, she got the opportunity during the lockdown to self-reflect. Lockdown came as a boon for her, which led to the idea of creating her own artwork and providing a platform for other fellow artists. Thus, she started Gharmai Productions at the beginning of 2021 from her own home.
A couple of weeks back we connected with Ms. Ghale, who answered all of our questions about her entrepreneurial journey.
Read our conversation to find out more about this interesting business.
Tell me about your motivation to start your own enterprise?
The concept idea started when I showed my artwork to my parents. They really liked the concept, but they warned me that it is quite easy in Nepal to copy someone else’s creative work. That is when I started exploring ways to use my designs and arts. Like an epiphany from my own past, I felt that I can do something on my own. I did not want to wait for someone else to create a platform where I could showcase it. Overall, I also realized that it is better to fail than not to try at all.
Can you tell me more about the production process?
As I am an undergraduate student, I do not get the opportunity to produce whenever possible. The production process is quite tedious and critical that a single mistake can really affect the final product. Hence, the production is done quarterly at the moment based on the existing market demand. The entire production process happens at home and is done by me. The overall process involves collecting artworks from artists, sourcing material within Nepal, cutting and printing the paper, and creating the final products. It takes about a month to complete the process.
What are the products currently being offered?
At Gharmai Productions, we had started with a stationary line while recently we further added an apparel line. For the stationery line, we offer notebooks, postcards, bookmarks, posters, planners, and guitar journals. For the apparel line, we have started with crewnecks and t-shirts. There will be more innovative products added in the future.
Who are your allies in running the business?
I am working towards building a team. But, as it is fairly new, I work solely in the production process. However, my prime objective in starting this enterprise was to provide other emerging artists a platform to showcase their work. Hence, I collaborate with other designers who provide me with their creative work in return for the royalty share.
How would you define your target market?
My products are mainly focused on the younger generation, mainly people who are trying to explore themselves and find new perspectives. I believe in today’s tech-savvy generation, notebooks can still be a powerful tool to develop creative ideas, in other words getting started with mindfulness.
Is there any other social impact created by your venture?
I have made plans to donate 100% profit from one of my new designs to Feed The Hungry Nepal. I have designed a notebook for this specific purpose to contribute to this social cause for my second project.
What are the main challenges in starting this venture?
The main challenge was the initial confusion on entering this industry. There isn’t much information available on the internet. Additionally, I also faced difficulty in collaborating with the existing stores or physical shops because most were reluctant to display my products. There is a lack of support from established businesses towards emerging ventures.
How do you deal with competition?
I see Chinese products as my main competitor. In terms of the Nepali market, there are several stationery brands running from generations. Nevertheless, I am satisfied with the quality of my products, which is the best in terms of paper quality in the market. Since I have clarity about my niche market and my target audience, I feel competition is not a negative thing. It is a community. I am happy with the market of my brand.
Where can the customers find your products?
How has this entrepreneurial journey been so far for you?
It has been an amazing experience to witness your idea turn into reality. I am someone who continuously questions my own work and thinks about what I can do more. So, I believe that having an internal motivation to do something different has helped me throughout this journey.
Is there any additional suggestion you would like to give to other emerging entrepreneurs?
Let me break your thought with a fact: you are going to fail; everything will never work out in your favor. However, doing nothing is also a failure. Instead of contemplating and not taking action, it is better to fail and learn from those mistakes. The best advice would be to take failure as a driver towards your success. Keep walking or crawling, but never stop trying!
Want to showcase your work in Gharmai Productions or just want to buy its creative products? Shop now from the links below!