Renting clothes in Nepal is not an uncommon thing however, the trend is usually to rent clothes for cultural events, fancy dress competitions or dance performances. Hiring clothes for any other purpose is quite unheard of.
Kapada Rent, therefore, is one of a kind in Nepal since they rent out party clothes for formal and informal events and/or occasions. With the hopes of decreasing the clothing footprints, the venture touches social aspects of the clothing industry. Catch this interview with Samundra Raj Aryal who elaborates more about his company.
1. How did you start your company?
A couple of years back, I bought a suit for rupees 10,000 but I only wore it 3 times. It doesn’t fit me now so I can’t wear it anymore. I felt like the money I spent on the suit did not justify its use. Considering this problem, I, along with my friend Rabin Rokka, established a company that rents clothes. In the research stage, we realized that this problem is persistent among women compared to men.
My company, Kapada rent, is a private limited company and has two concepts. First and foremost, we provide clothes for rent. Secondly, it is also a platform for people to earn money by renting out their clothing pieces from their own wardrobe. We generally provide sari, lehenga, gown, suit and other party wear to our customers. We are planning to add dresses for evening wear, photo shoots, formal and cocktail parties. As of now, we get customers on a seasonal basis.
From the last few months, we have been providing gents formal wears as suit-pants and have been receiving awesome responses from them.
2. What social problem are you trying to solve in society?
From one perspective, people can sell/rent the expensive clothes that they don’t wear anymore through our platform. Another perspective is that people who cannot afford expensive clothes can now rent the clothing they desire. We are particularly targeting middle-class families with low income so that they can save money on clothing all the while looking good in parties with our rented clothes.
Furthermore, research has proved that people send 90% of their clothes to landfills. The clothing industry is the second most polluting industry around the world. Hence, we are trying to decrease the number of new clothes being produced and old ones going to the landfill.
3. What challenges are you facing with the company and how are you overcoming them?
The main challenge is changing the mindset of people. People do not like wearing used clothes, sometimes even when people intend to wear rental clothes, the size does not fit. There are other organizational challenges as well as we faced a lot of problems while registering our company. In this generation, I feel that people accept that there needs to be a social change in society. This acceptance to change has helped us overcome our problem and more and more people are calling us or reaching out to us through Facebook and Instagram to rent clothes. This means that people have come above the negative thought and have been accepting this idea. Furthermore, we also share informative posts on social media about how clothing has been polluting the environment and how renting clothes can be helpful in reducing this.
4. Could you tell us more about your company including legal, operational, financial and future plan aspects?
Our company got registered in 2018. But I had started working on this idea after completing my bachelor degree which was around 3 years ago. We first brought the new clothes since we were not in contact with people who would sell their used clothes that were in great condition. We have invested up to 5 lakhs and are planning to further expand our company. We are in the process to sustain and as of now, we have been able to generate some revenue. Our future plan includes getting prime locations to set up our company in all municipalities and to include designers too.
5. Is Kapada Rent operating online or offline? Do you deliver the clothes?
We have both online and offline channels. For customers that prefer home delivery, they can order it online by choosing their clothes from our website/social media. For customers that prefer offline experiential renting, they can come to our store and select their desired apparels.
6. Do you consider yourself a social entrepreneur?
Initially, I did not think of myself as a social entrepreneur but after operating Kapada Rent for this long and acknowledging its impact, I have been feeling like one.
For more information about this interesting company, please contact them on Facebook or write to Samundra Raj Aryal at firstname.lastname@example.org.