Menstruation is a cycle that every female has to deal with on a monthly basis. Now, it’s not as easy as it sounds; the worst part comes in the form of period cramp and stained clothes. Moreover, females in some communities or some parts of Nepal have to even deal with untouchability and other societal taboos.
Considering all of these, Eva Gyawali came up with the idea of Period Panties that will be specifically designed to be worn during menstruation and make the cycle easier to deal with. Let’s see what she has to say about this wonderful idea for all females.
1. How did you come up with the idea of period panties?
Products that are available in the Nepali market for menstrual hygiene are not environmentally friendly. Although I‘ve seen a lot of them available in the international market, they’re quite expensive and unaffordable here. Considering these factors, and with the motivation to make period products available to people outside Kathmandu, I thought of bringing Period Panties in the Nepali market.
For the longest time, I had wanted to manufacture period friendly products using local materials available here at a lower cost. I love creating things and I thought this was an opportunity to do that and also benefit society. Moreover, my university education and work experience both aligned to propel me towards this Business Idea.
2. Can you tell us about the product and at which stage it is currently in?
Period Panties is still in the ideation stage. Period Panties are reusable panties that are specially made to wear for women during their periods. I have a prototype but I am still working on the different versions of the prototype, while experimenting with different materials, so that we can tap into the most efficient production method and final product.
3. What social problems are you trying to solve? Who are your target customers?
Basically, I want to solve problems associated with menstrual health. Moreover, while solving that issue, I will also be tackling environmental problems caused by disposable sanitary napkins which is non-biodegradable in nature.
My target customer is women between the ages group of 13-50.
4. How are you planning to fund your product? What problems do you foresee after the product launches?
I am planning to fund my project through self-financing. Furthermore, I want my business to become self-sustainable and not rely on any other external sources.
The major problem that I am likely to face would be in regard to making people aware of the availability of the product in the market. Moreover, I will be making an effort to aware of those in urban areas where there are so many options available already.
5. How do you plan to solve those problems?
In rural areas and smaller cities, we can run different programs to aware people. In rural areas though, the availability of sanitary pads is quite low. So, describing the product and its benefits to people in rural areas can give us an advantage.
In urban areas, word of mouth can be the most effective marketing tool. Similarly, we can also use social media platforms and digital marketing to promote the products.
6. What business model would you follow for your product?
The product is priced at Nrs. 800 for a set of two or three panties. The product will be sold in the urban areas and a certain percent of the revenue will be used as a donation to the people in rural areas. I won’t follow ‘buy one give one’ strategy where if one product is sold, we give one product to the people in rural areas.
7. What do you think is the most important thing you would have to do after you launch the product?
I feel that the product is really a necessity among women. While having a conversation with my friends and family circle about the product, I got a positive response. It sounded like people would use it. So, I’m hoping that people would be willing to try it when it launches.
I think it is a saleable product and I don’t have to struggle much. I hope people recommend it to others once they use my product. Furthermore, I will also work with the local communities to sell the product and to get donations to provide the product to marginalized communities.
8. How will you measure the impact of your product? Do you think you are a social entrepreneur?
I will monitor and evaluate the product by talking with people and asking for feedback regarding the use of period panties. I will increase my networking and also work towards upgrading my product so that it suits my consumers’ needs.
I think I’ll be a social entrepreneur once my product launches in the market.
For more information about this idea, please contact Eva Gyawali at firstname.lastname@example.org
Interviewed by Sadikshya and Edited by Shambhavi Singh