Everyone has an aesthetic sense in their own way. We have a natural instinct to get drawn towards beauty, be it animate, or inanimate. When it comes to building a house, the first requisite apart from land is furniture. Everyone has a mental image of the kind of furniture they want. But the market of custom-made furniture is still not in its full bloom.
The smell of new furniture’s freshness appeals to our senses and gives us a warm and cozy feeling of being home. Knowing this, Lokendra Ranawat, CEO of Wooden Street, delved in its foundation along with its co-founders who laid the framework for Wooden Street, an online customised furniture firm.
Lokendra was born in the beauties of Udaipur, Rajasthan, probably from where he got his aesthetic sense. His father was a naval officer and mother a homemaker. Because of his father’s job, Lokendra had to frequently switch schools. He holds a bachelor’s degree in electronics and communication engineering from Jaipur, and is an MBA in sales and marketing from ITM, Ghaziabad. Even though he was an average student he had the spirit to grow and be an entrepreneur.
After completing his education he wanted to start a business of his own. He had this vision to do something out of the box. After doing job in London for three years, he quit and decided to start something of his own. He brainstormed and found partners with similar taste who wanted to start a new venture. He decided on starting an online, custom-made furniture store under the name Wooden Street, in collaboration with Dinesh Pratap Singh, Virendra Ranawat, and Vikas Baheti.
While other online retailers provide furniture to their customers as it is, Wooden Street decided to infuse more flexibility by allowing them to provide custom-made furniture, tailored to their specifications. Not only this, it also provides a host of customisation options on high-quality hardwood furniture range so that the customer always gets to tweak anything to their liking.
Wooden Street began its operations from June, 2015, with an initial capital investment of Rs 5 lakh, and within a span of 18 months they clocked an annual revenue of Rs 20 crore. Being a B2C (Business to Customer) e-commerce portal, Wooden Street caters to furniture needs of customers across India. Its monthly revenue is around Rs 1.5 crore, translating to around Rs 20 crore of annual sales. But achieving it all was not a smooth sail.
Biggest setback the firm suffered was setting up a supply chain for heavy furniture pieces so that they could be delivered to various points across the nation, without any damage, and this required a lot of effort. But once they overcame this hurdle, the rest was comparatively smooth.
With around 10,000 visits per day, Wooden Street receives a traffic of around 3 lakh users per month. So far, they have served around 10,000 customers.
With a pool of almost 2,500 readily-available designs, one can navigate and choose their dream furniture easily. Other than that, if a customer requires a customised piece to their liking, they can easily approach the customer care and specify or share their ideas. The staff then reverts with diagrams and 3D models. Once they get a nod from the customers, they move ahead with the production, keeping the customer in loop through various stages.
Not only online, Wooden Street is also expanding around you. They have already set-up four experience stores in Bengaluru, Mumbai, Pune, and Jaipur. Ten more experience stores are in the pipeline within next 12 months across India.
Currently, the business is focused on Bengaluru, Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad and Chennai. Starting with a team of just 10 employees, it has expanded its family to 125 members within a span of just 18 months.
Staying rooted to the theme of Make in India, its aim is to provide furniture to the people of this nation, as each home is different, and one-size doesn’t fit everywhere. The furniture is designed by a varied team of designers and artisans who hail from the corners of this diverse sub-continent, serving the furniture-appetite of its customers, tailored to their needs, for 100 percent satisfaction.
Anyone who has the ability to take risks and can think out of the box can achieve their dreams with hard work and conviction and the founders of Wooden Street have proved just that.
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