How often do you see an All-India Rank Holder Chartered Accountant & a Fashion-Designer ‘cum’ Pastry Chef joining hands to start an e-commerce venture, proudly merchandising mainly “MADE IN INDIA” products? Bet, this is a first.
Anushree, a new doting mommy, is like the logical left side of the company’s brain, a Chartered Accountant by education (All-India Rank holder, no less) and received her B.Com (Hons) from Delhi University (again, gold medalist).
Prerna pursued Fashion Management from the London College of Fashion before going to Le Cordon Bleu, London to become a certified Pastry Chef. She is an author & a Vipassana meditator. She loves travelling & has worked in merchandising, advertising & branding previously making her a design aficionado and giving her an eye for detail.
Did we just say – Jill Of All Trades, Master Of Some? 🙂
Diversified backgrounds & rich experience spanning from varied genres of professional specialization, the siblings conceptualized & morphed their vision into reality & The Conscious Collective was born when Anushree was expecting her first baby. She was scouting for eco- friendly, luxury, trimester-appropriate organic products for her pregnancy only to realize that this is an unorganized market. They identified a need for high-quality & customised premium products to pamper a mommy-to-be. With the desire to fill this huge gap, The Conscious Collective was born & found it’s niche.
In conversation with Anushree & Prerna – See what they got to say about their entrepreneurial journey.
1) Did you always knew you wanted to be an entrepreneur? Or did you make a conscious choice much later?
Since early years, we both had a very strong inclination to start our own enterprise. As teenagers we used to always discuss ideas and be intrigued by problem-solving businesses that were causing disruptions. It was only last year that we got the opportunity to act on this dream.
2) What is the ideology you live by?
The main philosophy behind The Conscious Collective – which also reflects the ideology of its team is SUSTAINABILITY. In everything we do, our endeavor is to look beyond the profits and weigh the social impact of every decision. This belief is reflected in form of various things we do at ConsciousCo – whether it is our Be-Kind initiative, our Made-in-India product selection or the dedication to use reusable packaging.
3) How do you intent to expand? How do you go about picking the right products or vendors that represent the brand?
Our expansion plans are always governed by demand. Since our launch, we have added more verticals based on consumer feedback. We now have organic superfoods, chemical-free beauty products, a monogram store which have received rave reviews. As and when our customers ask for more, we will honour them by adding new lines.
We have strict guidelines that our merchandising team adheres to for product/vendor selection. We curate top of the line products from artisanal niche brands only.
4) Tell us something about the obstacles you face while starting up (as a woman) & how you both overcame it to make The Conscious collective where it is today?
Every entrepreneur, whether a man or a woman faces obstacles in their journey. Whats important is that one perseveres and tries to find solutions rather than getting bogged down. In that respect, we both have the spirit of a boxer. Every time we face difficulties, we come back stronger. Infact, based on past experiences we can safely say that every obstacle has taught us something and led us to improve our offering.
5) Are you looking for funding in the near future? What is the way forward?
Receiving funds are always a validation of your idea, however, in keeping with our ideology, we aspire to create a business that grows organically and is not dependant on external fund infusion. Organic growth is sustainable growth.
6) With so many inspiring people around, who is your inspiration?
We draw inspiration from every indiviual that has the pizazz to fight & overcome their own unique set of circumstantial challenges. On a particular day it could be a gardener who at 70 works just for his passion… On another day it could be elon musk who is aiming to take humanity to mars… Or it could even be Swami Parathasarathy who at 90 plays cricket and still has hope for humanity.
7) Tell us something more about the “Sister-Chemistry”?
Its great fun working with someone you’ve grown up with. We never struggle understanding each other’s quirks and find a way to align with one another’s thought processes always. One flip side is that the business discussions never stop, even on dining tables or family vacations.
8) Many of the products sold on “The Conscious Collective” are premium inclined towards the affluent segment. How do you intend to make it more mass-market?
In our view our products are very much within the reach of India has an increasingly affluent middle-class that lays emphasis on spending on conscious products. We are confident that the market is poised for tremendous growth in the years to come.
The USP of ConsciousCo.in are their curated boxes be it the ones for an expecting mom or for a new baby or their healthy Superfood boxes. The boxes start Rs 1750 and bring together a perfect blend of products for each of the underlying themes. These are not only great for personal consumption but are excellent for gifting as well.
Our Pick – What did we buy?
2. Krysalis Silver Rattle & Bracelet
The Indian customary tradition necessitates gifting of a Silver Spoon, Rattle, Bracelet, Anklet, Diya & Bowl for the little munchkin. This is a perfect gifting hamper for a mommy-to-be. The silver bracelet & rattle is priced at Rs.3,150. You can also personalize it by engraving the little baby’s name. The products come packaged in beautiful boxes with a pink/blue theme.
2. The Infant Gift Box
Is there a confusion on choosing the best gift for a new born? Let’s clear the confusion. The Infant Box’ is curated to have all the best-selling essential things you require as a new mommy. An organic onesie, a quirky bib, a luxe cotton swaddle, cold pressed baby oil, all natural rubber teether & organic diapers make a perfect gift for the little bundle of joy – The Infant gift boxes start Rs 1750 and can be customized to your requirement.
What we love the most:
Quality of Products – 9.5/10: Well-researched & tested, ethically made & sourced products are offered whilst consulting nutrition & health experts. Why resort to imported products when “Made In India” products are so
Eye For Detail– 10/10: Every product sold on the website is drilled for quality, performance, functionality and design aesthetics. They have an incredible ability to go broad & deep, which is the hallmark of a great Founder.
What could have been better:
Assortment of Products – 7.5/10: There is a lot to offer in the pregnancy & early motherhood
Assortment of Brands – 8/10: Some brands sold on the website are unheard of. And that in most cases is a blessing in disguise, since we are introduced to fantastic products that are meticulously hand-picked and abide by the safety norms that every mommy wants for her child.