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'Affordable luxury with a universal appeal'

Monday, May 13, 2019

Natasha Jain, CEO & Co-founder, Bent Chair

Natasha Jain is a 30-year-old serial entrepreneur from Delhi, India.  She comes from an entrepreneurial family that helped lead her to where she is today. She moved to the US to study industrial engineering at Georgina Institute of Technology and has a Masters Degree in Management Science Engineering from Stanford University.   

After she finished her studies at Stanford she started Fresh mentors, an online college mentoring platform. After some time in Silicon Valley, she returned to India to start her next venture. Natasha revolutionized everyday payments by creating a payment app called Ruplee.  

Natasha, along with her father, co-founded Bent Chair. At the heart of this initiative is the co-operative manufacturing enterprise that brings the best of technologies in the hands of local artisans across north India.

In conversation with Dominic Rebello, Natasha says her goal is to continue to create businesses that can employ hundreds to thousands of people in India.

What is the idea behind Bent Chair?
Bent Chair was conceptualized on the idea to bring forth the products of artisans, skilled craftsmen, and homemakers directly to the consumer. Initially, the brand struggled with understanding if they directly listed their products on our platform, would we be able to maintain supply and consistency in quality. After months of legwork, Bent Chair brought together a team of artisans, rug weavers and craftsmen under one roof to create the spectacular Lokalferi line. This is an ode to the traditional Indian craft. The company worked hard to retain the identity of the designs and add a modern spin to it. Though it was challenging for the team to maintain the intricate carvings, bring modern pop to the product while also keeping a check on quality and detailing, we were thrilled with the result.

How are you different from others?
Unlike other premium interior brands, Bent Chair support Make-in-India in a big way since the beginning. The creation and manufacturing of our products take place after research into what is trending in the home decor and lifestyle space. All the manufacturing takes place in Ambala in our 50,000 square feet state-of-the-art facility that houses the latest wood working machinery as well as a huge space for assembly, storage, and testing of the finished product. Addressing to customer’s preference, Bent Chair enables customisation of products adhering to the finest quality. The brand is omnipresent i.e., the products are available at all retail stores as well as online. In addition, the company is well organised and follows a systematic way for customisation of products, manufacturing, sales, after sale service, etc.   

Any expansion plans?
Our expansion journey has been overwhelming, to be honest. It’s definitely been faster than I expected, and I still can’t believe that we made to 15 cities and China. We started from Hyderabad, moved on to various Tier 2 cities, and now opened stores in Chennai and Bangalore. It really has been a great learning curve. By the end of 2019, I hope to have 20 stores across India, and my 2020 vision is to turn that number in 40.

Your vision for the company?
Our vision is to bring to India affordable luxury with a universal appeal. At the same time focus on leveraging the in-depth expertise, best of technologies integrated with traditional Indian artisans to build a contemporary urban home aesthetic space.

Indulgence in each and every minute detail is an inevitable part of the brand’s journey. Hundreds of small steps ensure in achieving the mission of setting global benchmarks for distinctive products, bringing unmatched customer experience and trustworthy best practices. Our passion and persistence for curating and crafting the finest in furniture and home décor products makes us the part of the home building journey of million consumers.

Where do you see yourself five years down the road?
Within next five years, I will put in all my energy in the expansion of Bent Chair globally by opening more and more stores each month.

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