Because we human beings have no control over what happens in our lives
It is very rightly said “Push Yourself, because No one else is Going to do it for You” one such personality is a 19 year old engineering student, Ranodeep Saha, an art enthusiast who is currently pursuing B.Tech degree in Computer Science from West Bengal University of Technology (Formally known as Indian Institute of Information Technology-Kolkata) and runs an e-commerce startup in the name of “RARE PLANET”.
Ranodeep has been also selected as a Regional Ambassador Lead for Mozilla from South East Asia and is also interning at The Telegraph. In short, he is an ignited soul, whose potential and capability is beyond measures.
CampusVibes, speaks with Ranodeep to know as to what gave him the strength and wisdom to launch RARE PLANET at such a young age.
So Ranodeep, what exactly is RARE PLANET and what was the story behind it?
Founded in June 2015, RARE PLANET is just not another online e-commerce portal but we term ourselves as a handicraft brand ; we are trying to create a standard for Indian Handicrafts and take them to a global scale. We work with Artisans innovate products almost everyday maintaining a certain level of quality. We have 87 different kinds of products of which 85% are new and are unique to us as we have innovated the old existing product and have come up with a new innovation in that product.
I firmly believe in the fact that “We human beings have no control on what comes and goes in our lives”, something similar happened with me too. RARE PLANET happened after my break up. It was in first year of Engineering when I started working on Kulhars one fine night as a memory of my ex. She loved drinking Tea in those Kulhars and Fan Art ; My journey started with painting Fan art on those Kulhars. From those painted Kulhars to where we are it all happened in a blink of an eye as it seems today. As the whole thing started growing I started visiting different villages in our State (Bengal) and found a lot of people were working in this sector but there was no quality control and most importantly lack on innovation in terms of the products. I remember spending days in villages without electricity working on ideas and thus today we see RARE PLANET.
What are the Key features of RARE PLANET and what differentiates it from other platforms?
We have certain products which are our identity. We have got Patachitra painted bottles which have got QR Codes when you scan the code you get the story behind the bottle so each bottle has a different story to tell. We have got a range of History Crockery which includes two types of Ceramic cups one is on Indus Valley Civilization and other is on Mesopotemian Civilization; each of these cups takes 4-5 hours of hard work. Other than this our Signature product the Painted Kulhar is always there. These are now available online and we deliver all across country with Cash On Delivery.
What was the most challenging part of running RARE PLANET and how did you overcome that?[Heheh…smiles] Now that’s something unavoidable. Obstructions and Challenges helps you grow by leaps and bounds. So coming back to the question, the most challenging part was to keep up with the quality and quantity which can be only be done by maintaining a healthy relationship with your artisans. My artists are my god and I had overcomed this issue of Artists by making it more like a family ; I meet them regularly help them as much as I can; maintain a healthy relation with them; help them with money or any other help they need on a regular basis. I personally teach Maths to 3 kids of Artisans.
What is the current traction of RARE PLANET?
So we have 4 retail counters in West Bengal which includes counters with Oxford Park Street and 2 other Premium locations in Kolkata and one in Durgapur. One counter in Bhubaneswar. We are opening 2 counters one in Mumbai and another one in Bhubaneswar. So we have more than 10 lakh products (in quantity) sold in last one and half year. Majority in retail. And our website is also doing considerably good.
What are your future plans for next 3 years?
We want to have RARE PLANET counters in different countries and not only in India; My dream with RARE PLANET is to have counters in every International Airport globally; so that when Indians land on the respective airport they get enthralled with pride for the country and also feel the sentiments of artisans. And as far as the manufacturing is concerned we want to involve more and more artists now as our chain is of 143 artists which include Leather , Ceramic , Patachitra and alot more so the target is to take this no to 1000 and get in artisans from all across the country on board and not just limit it to Bengal.
Any advice that you wish to give to the new emerging startups?
If you are a seasoned Entrepreneur then I don’t have any advice as such but if you are a Student Entrepreneur and you are stepping into this world a few things to be kept in mind. This is not a easy world ; this is not a extended version of your college project understand that. Mentally get prepared first to tackle the situations because your client will not understand the fact that you are a student Entrepreneur he will only understand results.
What three qualities an individual must have to achieve success?
I don’t consider myself successful it’s a relative word and varies from person to person and I sincerely believe in setting up the Level really high so that you fight with yourself to achieve a higher level each day. The only thing I would mention is HARD WORK. Do it when you are young may be later on you will repent why you missed the opportunity back then.
ONE SUCCESS TIP: HARD WORK there is no other alternative ; I still work with my artisans sometimes till 4 at night.
ONE MISTAKE YOU BELIEVE EVERY INDIVIDUAL MUST AVOID: Don’t get carried away by the Valuation and the funding game ; always try and understand your Business. Create a Sustainable Business.
ONE MOST IMPORTANT LESSON THAT YOU HAVE LEARNT TILL NOW: To be diplomatic while answering Press and Media(Laughs).
SHARE ANY ONE HABIT WHICH YOU THINK MAKES YOU MORE PRODUCTIVE: I can work 24 x 7 if I feel the work I am doing is making any good to society , I can work super hard and that is something which makes me stand out.
ONE HABIT WHICH YOU WISH TO CHANGE IN YOURSELF: I spend something around 140-120 mins on Whats app and Facebook which I want to reduce it decreases my productivity level and disturbs my concentration on work.
A QUOTE THAT INSPIRES YOU THE MOST: “Life Doesn’t stop for anyone … it goes on Probably that’s the beauty of life ”
That was Ranodeep Saha from RARE PLANET, #staytuned for more amazing Campus startups from Campusvibes.
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