INTERVIEW WITH SUPARNA CHAKRABORTY: Founder – NeoNatives
Q: What inspired you to start your own business?
A: Being a NIFT graduate, I had always aimed to set my mark high in the fashion industry. So, after a handful industry experience of 11 years in retail giants like Raymond, Future Group and Mufti, I thought of owning my own brand. The decision came with a need of diversifying my capabilities from a Design Manager to a Neopreneur. One major reason behind this bold step was my 4-year-old son, whom I wanted to give proper parental care and touch.
As a designer by profession and a mom by God’s grace, I have realized the need for sustainable and skin friendly clothing for our little ones. Soft cotton party shirts are very rarely found in the market at an affordable price. With this thought, I have initiated my kidswear brand NeoNatives.
A perfect camouflage of quality, comfort and style, the brand is built with a view of providing soft comfortable festive wear clothing for Boys (age 2-8 yrs).
Q: What hurdles came across in beginning?
A: Things were not easy from the beginning. The first challenge was to sacrifice a hefty salary, getting ready for recurring expenses and securing family expenses at the same time. But there was no time or thought to look back. The second challenge was what my brand swears by- skin-friendly products at pocket-friendly prices. Trying to fit pure cotton shirts at a low range I had to go through a lot of negotiations and many times even losses. Being in the industry and working for good brands like Lee Cooper, Parx, a lot of my contacts have helped me to source industry standard raw materials, but on the other hand, at many places, it was hard to crack a deal as it was a start-up.
Q: What is Your Struggle Story?
A: In a quest to rule my own life I always find myself balancing between bringing up my kid, setting up my own business, serving my clients as a design consultant, and devoting time to my own NIFT as a jury member and guest faculty. But the journey has been remarkable with good and supportive people around me.
Q: What is your business into?
A: NeoNatives, as the name suggests, is a new way of representing fashion keeping in mind the old tradition of valuing sustainability and quality. So the colours and patterns are borrowed from traditional India and camouflaged in an Indowestern style. Its all about Sustainable fashion at pocket-friendly prices.
Q: How would you like to help your fellow members / or contribute towards society?
A: I believe in connecting, networking and supporting each other so I joined Women Entrepreneurs Enclave (WEE) which encourage me and other women to support each other and contribute towards the society in various ways.
WEE has taught me coexisting and empowering each other. So I will be always available to help my fellow members and volunteer good causes. I would also like to take the support of my fellow members to spread the word and consciousness of using skin-friendly things even if it comes at little higher prices. Because its worth and saves the environment.
Connect with me @ Website