By Team NSHM | Nov 6, 2017

Inspiring Start-ups: How Chumbak turned Un-conventional into Attractive

Like most start ups, every big idea starts from a small need. For Shubhra Chadda and Vivek Prabhakar this small need became a big opportunity, which they pursued proactively to create something they never dreamed of.

Birth of an Idea:

Subhra & Vivek, shared the same hobby – collecting souvenirs from countries worldwide. Suddenly they realized that India has very little to offer in this department. Compare the variety of fridge magnets and mugs from European countries with the usual Taj Mahal miniature, pashmina shawl, brass elephant, etc. and you’ll know for keepsakes they are delicate, high maintenance and fragile. Travelers would end up not taking any. This repetitive and boring pattern was the opportunity they needed to explore. Therefore, with a will to offer travelers something more creative, funny and colorful, Chumbak was born in 2010.

Evolution of a 360 degree lifestyle brand:

The founder of the brand, Shubhra and Vivek initially started this with a seed capital of Rs.45 Lakhs, which they raised by selling their house in 2010. In 2012, they got a boost by Seed funds. During introduction stage, they relied on flagship stores in few metro cities. Soon, they realized that their customers wanted to buy all their products from under one roof. As a wise marketer, to fulfill their consumer’s needs, they opted for one-stop pop-up kiosks around the nation. Alongside, they made a move into the promising e-commerce sector.

After the successful debut, their core team of 30 grew close to 150 and they started extending their product categories beyond souvenirs, into interior decorative items, clothing, etc. From an unconventional start up, they become a successful 360 degree lifestyle brand.

The Chumbak team understands the business mechanism very well. The credit for the success of the brand however largely relies upon the innovativeness of the products. They dare to execute an unconventional idea into something very relatable with a dash of humour. They bring all medium of marketing under their Big idea umbrella. They understood the needs and preferences of their consumer and reacted upon it wisely. Their online and offline presence benefits them in different manner.

The social media impact:

According to them, one of their most successful medium is Instagram. The reason was simple. The consumer is now exposed to designs from across the globe. This has brought a refinement in their tastes and preferences. The social media buzz keeps telling the company what their target audience likes and wants more of. Keeping this in mind, they now try to bring core Indian themed designs for consumers with a dash of international touch. This approach and pocket friendly pricing has helped gain popularity and helped enlarge their consumer base.

Start –up Mantras

In their multiple interviews, the founder duo gives some important insights for all start up enthusiasts.  Some of these are:

  1. Consumer study is very important for a business to succeed. One needs to understand their consumer’s taste and preferences to become successful.
  2. Raising funds in a competitive field is difficult. But if you can establish your idea successfully, then investors are bound to take interest to invest in your business.
  3. The idea of the startup must be very broad. This will help develop the brand by extension of products and adapting innovative medium of marketing.
  4. Finally, if you have an idea in your mind and are confident about it, then don’t wait for any favorable conditions. Just follow your heart and success will follow you.