22 Jun 2016, 11:02 — 8 min read
Every entrepreneur’s journey is punctuated with change. What differentiates the successful ones from the also-rans, is the ability to veer from the chosen path, in the face of imminent failure and rebuild without losing faith. One such entrepreneur is Sanjay Gupta, an entrepreneur hitherto engaged in the sugar mills engineering business. When faced with recession and imminent seasonality challenge in that business, he took the bold step to veer and foray into a completely different territory – that of CCTV cameras & LED lights. His research indicated a beckoning opportunity in a sector that was dominated by quality-starved Chinese goods. This, backed by the ‘Make in India’ wave gave him the confidence to establish Spinoff Technopark Pvt Ltd, an establishment geared towards developing technology verticals with clear growth potential.
In conversation with GlobalLinker (GL), Sanjay Gupta (SG) traces the journey of his venture and how, armed with meticulous market research, hard work and perseverance, he is accomplishing his business aspirations.
GL: Tell us about your business and how it came into being.
SG: I was part of a business group engaged in sugar mills engineering, but due to a slowdown in the sugar industry, our business suffered and we faced financial losses. In 2012, I decided to start afresh and look for an industry that was likely to grow at a rapid pace in the next two decades.
I launched Spinoff Technopark as a parent company that would develop various upcoming technology verticals. After extensive market research I ventured into the production of CCTV Cameras (under the brand name HAWKSEYE) and LED lights (under the brand name Imperial LED), for household, commercial, institutional and industrial consumers.
This industry is primarily dominated by imports from China, and is growing in double digits since the last 5 years. Our goal is to reach the end customer directly, like a B2C platform, and give them quality solutions for their needs in CCTV cameras and LED lights. It took us about 12 months to come up with our production facility for both the divisions, and by early 2014, we had the first trial runs of our products being made on Japanese machines of the world’s highest quality.
We set up our R&D facility to design the product and ensure that they are developed with utmost care and focus on quality, efficiency and long time reliability. Our production range started with just 2 products in the first quarter, and has now grown to a range of more than 1000 products in both the verticals.
Our products are available on online marketplaces like Amazon, Flipkart, Snapdeal, ShopClues, etc.
At present we are a team of 100, and intend to grow to a team of 1000 members in the next 5 years with a pan-India presence.
GL: How did you come up with the idea of establishing this business?
SG: Having completed my degree in chartered accountancy and also a company secretary course, I started my career as a consultant way back in 1991 and worked for more than 10 years. I then decided to get into the manufacturing business. My father owned a shop in Chandigarh and as a child, I would assist him in the shop. Since then I developed a passion of having my own business someday. At the beginning of my career, I focused on getting the adequate qualifications and experience, but the entrepreneurial spirit always burned bright within me. I invested and worked in the sugar mill engineering vertical for few years, but when that venture did not click as per my instinct, instead of falling into despair, I was determined to re-align my energies and focus on an upcoming industry with huge growth opportunities. Thus, I established Spinoff Technopark and the journey so far has been extremely exciting and rewarding.
Right from the onset, I was very clear in my mind of my business goals and I have defined certain milestones that help us ensure that we are on track.
1st milestone: Concept initiation and creating asset-based infrastructure to start manufacturing operation.
2nd milestone: Developing a product as per market need
3rd milestone: Launching the product in the market
4th milestone: Reaching the customer through sales and marketing
GL: What are the challenges you have faced in establishing your business?
SG: There are always several challenges in a startup and it takes time to settle into business. I believe in hard work and with a clear vision, I have created a road map for my business for the next 5-10 years. The biggest challenge for us is promoting our brand and making customers aware about us and our products. Nowadays, one needs a lot of money to create a brand identity, so that is my major challenge today.
GL: What is the USP of your business?
SG: We are the first Indian manufacturing company with focus of B2C through online market place, wherein we intend to sell the product to the user without any compromise in quality and service support.
We are committed to delivering customized solutions to our users in the product line that we are engaged in. We pride ourselves in having R&D, design, manufacturing and support all under one roof.
We have been able to generate a client range which included all categories of customers such as corporates, government, and commercial/residential clients for CCTV cameras and LED lights.
We can guarantee the payback of LED lights CapEx by any user in defined timeline, from 6 months to 24 months based on usage hours of lighting. All our LED lights and CCTV products are of very high quality and true resolution, unlike the poor quality Chinese goods that are available in the market.
GL: Who are some of your major clients?
SG: Some of our major clients include the Mahindra Group, Vodafone, JW Marriott, the Ministry of Defence, Haryana Urja Vidyut Nigam, Punjab University CHANDIGARH, CITCO amongst many other companies.
GL: What role do you feel GlobalLinker plays in connecting and assisting SMEs?
SG: We believe that GlobalLinker can really help in connecting and bringing the emerging SME players in the limelight and help them succeed in their business dreams. Also, GlobalLinker will play a big role in boosting the ‘Make in India’ initiative.
GL: What is your big business dream?
SG: We are first focusing in developing our product brand identity to be as strong as some of the major players like SYSKA, Philips, etc. I believe that we SMEs have everything except brand recognition. For that, we need financial support, and we are on the lookout for some strategic financial investor who can understand and support our initiative.
Once we have brand awareness, the demand is going to come by default, because annual size of the industry we are in is more than INR 20,000 crores per year. So there is enough space for focused players to reach their goal with strategic investor support and sound business planning. Our goal is to acquire strategic financial partners to increase our national and global outreach.
GL: What is your message to aspiring entrepreneurs?
SG: Maintain your cool and work hard. Success is a surety for hardworking people. Be true to yourself, and loyal to your customers, staff and other business associates. There is no short-cut to success. Business is a journey which has a start and a destination. Come what may, we must reach our destination, irrespective of hurdles and mode of transport.
Disclaimer: This article is based solely on the inputs shared by the featured member. GlobalLinker does not necessarily endorse the views, opinions & facts stated by the member.
Posted byGlobalLinker Staff
We are a team of experienced industry professionals committed to sharing our knowledge and skills with small & medium enterprises.
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