18 December 2017

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Entrepreneurship -- within and without

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Radha MuralidharanTall, fair and elegance personified, that is Radha Muralidharan. Seated in her exclusive lingerie boutique, Srishty, on the first floor of Fathima Plaza in T Nagar, Chennai, she conceded to share her entrepreneurial experience with us.

Born and brought up in Madhuranthagam, in Chengal pet district of Tamil Nadu, she is a graduate in economics. Right from her youth, she had discovered for herself that she had everything in her to strike out on her own her early years were spent in devoting time to family and kids.

 

The drive in her to be her own boss reared its head and on the advice of a friend, she contacted manufacturers of saris Bombay and Bengal cotton, Arani Pattu Stockists, etc. And in the year 1987, she started her home business of selling saris on installments to family and friends. She was extremely successful and manufacturers and stockists from all over the north flocked to her, to leave their stock with them. Her fluency in Hindi was an added advantage as she could strike a rapport with them immediately. She continued with this for seven successful years, until personal issues intervened and she had to take a temporary break.

 

Her husband, Mr Muralidharan, a computer professional and vice president of an American MNC, offered his unstinting support to her entrepreneurial ventures, He personally financed her first boutique at Fathima Plaza in Chennai, in the year 2002. It had exclusive salwars, chudidhars and dress materials and a tailoring unit attached to it. But T Nagar being the commercial hub of Chennai, with so many ready made textile outlets, Radha could not withstand the competition. At the brink of despair, a co boutique owner and friend advised her to specialize in lingerie. Thus, the year 2003, saw the inception of Srishty, an exclusive boutique in imported innerwear and lingerie.

Radha’s friend introduced her to contacts abroad from Thailand, Bangkok, and China, who are regular suppliers of imported lingerie to Srishty, ever since its inception in July 2003.

She opts to remain a sole proprietor in her venture and is not willing to partner with anyone. She smiles, when she says, “I do not want to indulge in ego clashes with a partner It would adversely affect my clients”. Her customers are all mainly young girls from most of the colleges in the city.

Word of mouth praise for the quality of her lingerie and the advice she offers by guiding young minds to the right inner wear to choose for each attire, and for each occasion, goes a long way in bringing back customers to her boutique quite frequently. Most women are unaware of the importance of wearing the correct inner garments she quips. She guides, each and every customer who walks into her boutique, and helps to personally select the right inner wear suited to them. That personal touch, rapport, quality and the wide variety of her products, ranging from imported to branded ones from India like Angel form, Lovable, Daisy Dee etc, is what makes her the most popular and much sought after lady entrepreneur in the industry. Customers from even the suburbs of Chennai throng to her outlet. Her sales record reaches an astounding peak in the summer months and on all holidays.

Srishty boasts of different types of lingerie for different attire special ones for saris, chudidhars, seamless ones for T shirts, silicon transparent ones for people in the modeling and film industry. Disposable innerwears are fast moving, especially among those who travel frequently.

“Very few people realize beauty within is as important as beauty without. It’s the proper selection of the right inner wear that adds to the class and style of the outer attire,” Radha affirms confidently.

A rare woman of substance, her hobbies include astrology and reading spiritual magazines. Radha has huge plans for expansion. She wants to branch out into exclusive locales. Her dream is to own an exclusive show room in the heart of the city. She ascribes her success to her very supportive family and to her encouraging in laws, and also to her friend, a co boutique owner, who takes care of her shop on those days she is away on some personal mission.” she believes firmly.

 

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