My next interview got scheduled as I browsed Linkedin. Devang Sharma, one of my batchmates from NMIMS, had a very interesting post about how his company had managed to achieve a record high in sales on Myntra. At first I thought this was some place he worked, but on scouting further, it was a company he had co-founded not too long ago – I just had to speak with him.
Devang had worked for a bit in the sports marketing industry, after which he wished to set up an E-commerce venture, as the industry seemed to show promise. They started their venture with trading of a broad variety of products categories like computer accessories, lighting and footwear to name a few, which is when they noticed a bigger gap in the market.
In the tech-infested space of E-commerce, there were already a plethora of solutions that helped with a variety of activities – order placements, order executions, tracking and reconciliation to name a few. Devang and team had experienced these first hand and developed some amount of mastery in the same. That’s when they noticed something – something that would become their next big idea.
Even with the large number of services that allowed you to set up the infrastructure and (to some extent) marketing, there still existed a gap when it came to the intellect required to use these services in the most effective way in order to scale up sales to its full potential. That’s where ‘Brand Hawkers’ was born.
Brand Hawkers had built an ecosystem which consisted a variety of in-house solutions, third-party offerings and strong connections to decision makers in the biggest E-commerce platforms in the country. This would enable their clients to exponentially scale the reach of their brand to a variety of market places. That’s quite a win-win-win situation, right – The client generates more revenue, the E-commerce platform generates their income on the sale and Brand Hawkers gets the commission. What’s most important is that the end customer gets to see a wider, and possible better range of products to choose from.
When I think about it, it’s a very elegant model – based purely on expertise generated and relationships built over time. Today, Brand Hawkers work with a variety of brands and manufacturers across several categories like fashion, mobile accessories and appliances, and allow them to leverage the power of digital media the right way. All this was possible because they could find the ‘needle’ of an opportunity in the ‘haystack’ and make the most of it.
The first client that Brand Hawkers brought in was in the mobile accessory space. They didn’t charge the client anything except a nominal commission on the sales they generated. The campaign went really well and that client still works with Brand Hawkers. Only after their initial successes, Brand Hawkers had generated a track record good enough to be able charge a retainer fee in addition to the commission generated. Slow and steady…
When I asked Devang what his advice was for new entrepreneurs, his first reaction was that he has a long way to go to give advice. However, there is one thing which he has learnt over the past few months – Several entrepreneurs try to create ventures that can impact their market. What holds them back is the mindset with which they enter the field. They aren’t always prepared to give it a fair chance. Essentially, entrepreneurship is a game of patience. It’s like waiting for an egg to boil before removing the shell. You need to work hard to allow your enterprise to reach its full potential, and only then can you benefit from the comforts that success brings in.
Being able to really spot the gap in the market is what made all the difference for this company. Executing the idea well enough to generate a very tangible result for the client has allowed the company to grow significantly over the past year. Brand Hawkers has not only expanded in terms of clients, but also company strength. By hiring top talent from the industry, they ensure that they stay ahead in the race to be the smartest guys in the room. I wish them the very best of luck moving forward.
– Abhishek Kaul