Interview with Aniruddh Basu, Founder, Isabis Lifestore
The reasons for the initiation of Isabis & the concept behind it?
India is rich with talented artists and craftsmanship. The craftsmen of Bengal have been, for centuries, generating designs of aesthetic splendidness, captivating the attention of the connoisseurs, both in India and abroad. The artistry of the craftsmen lies in their traditional skills, their rendition of the materials, their taste and of course, their grasp of the design, form and embellishment of their products. These all have been acquired through conforming generations of skilled artists.
The word Isabis is an African name for “something beautiful” and it has been initiated with the intention to change the face of luxury home furnishing range of products in our country which brings forth the aptitudes that contributes to a diverse, harmonious and colourful culture translated to the world of magnificent art and craft.
The brief on the journey of the lifestyle store
The ISABIS LIFESTORE is an one stop online boutique at www.isabis.in which has been operational since October, 2017. The research team at Isabis perpetually strives to understands and create incipient designs with rich colours, patterns and fabric. We make an endeavour to compliment your lifestyle with our range of luxury home furnishing products that beautifies your inner being.
The distinct features of the organization portfolio
Isabis design team refines and redefines home furnishing products which we create. Our product range includes Luxury Cushion Covers, Exquisite range of Kantha Works on Bed Spreads, Gorgeous Table Runners, Table Mats & Coasters for your dining table and astonishing work of Dhokra artefacts which can adorn any corner of your home and office. We do this by developing exclusive design lines that are available on our online boutique www.isabis.in by inviting the innovativeness of the craftsmen and our in-house design team, thus fashioning beautiful works for shows and exhibitions and for our retail enthusiasts as well.
The challenges in sourcing the products:
There are times when we spend hours and days at a stretch to discover the right artisans who can give shape to our design conceptions. A lot of efforts goes to find the right fabrics which we would enjoy producing different designs of furnishing items from what is generally available in stores. All our designs are unique, and we never repeat our designs.
Store’s promotion of traditional handicrafts and their popularity among consumers:
Isabis is an online boutique for Luxury Home Furnishing & Artefacts. At www.isabis.in we have taken the route of digital marketing and social media to promote our range of products. We are present in Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and more so we believe on Word of Mouth publicity route as we are acquiring more consumers through references and we are happy that the quality of our products speaks for itself which invites new customers.
Steps taken to support the rural craftsmen
The ISABIS procurement team makes continuous trips to the rural side to discover buddingrural artisans. They conventionally work out from their homes. We have a team of such aptitudes in different village homes of West Bengal who are perpetually giving shape to our design conceptions. There are times when these artisans additionally come up with new pattern designs and we endeavour to collaborate with them. Our sample team makes the sample designs at our workshop and then that sample goes down to the rural homes who in turn does the mass engenderment. This practice has given livelihood to men & women who are skilled and have now become a significant resource to us.
The new initiatives planned
Once we establish our brands in the coming months, Isabis will come up with a format of brick & mortar store in the line of ART CAFE which will be an amalgamation of art & cafe. We will have our first Art Cafe in Kolkata where the cafe will withal a string of regalement starting with folk musical compositions to stand-up comedians to western instrumental music. It will be in the line of country side cafes in UK.
ISABIS has verbalized with few international buyers and national buyers who have given a good replication, where in their stores, we will orchestrate our products.
The Current scenario of lifestyle products segment in India :
The total retail market is worth Rs 102,750 crore (US$ 17.13 bn) growing at 12-13 per cent and is expected to be worth Rs 144,323 crore (US$ 24.05 bn) by 2017. Modern retail is estimated at 19 per cent of this total market and is expected to grow at 24-27 per cent. Retail expansion grew at 16-21 per cent in terms of number of retail outlets and retail space with same store revenue magnification being around 15 per cent.
Challenges & potential of this segment
The furnishing segment has three broad categories which range from furnishings, furniture and decor which have been growing upwards in a positive trend. But there is a minuscule shift of market share from furniture to decor in the last couple of years because of the controlled consumption which resulted in spending less on high value items like furniture. Consumers perpetuate to spend on furnishings as it has been and invested more in upgrading interiors and decor items to give an incipient refreshing optically canvass home or office. The furniture and home décor industry in India is largely unorganised which is a major obstruction for its growth. The perception and perspective of the industry needs to transform as it is still not open to innovation and experiment.
Future Road Map Of The Company:
The future road map of ISABIS is marked by
Giving due importance to marketing and consumer promotions by providing opportunities for customers to experience new product lines, categories and brands introduced in the online or offline stores from time to time.
Offering the consumers an excellent and exhaustive range of luxury home furnishing products and artefacts with alluring discounts and offers.
Investing heavily in training our designers on products, soft skills, customer acquisitions and other technical knowhow of the merchandise.
Developing proficiency and aptitude at every key level in the organization and having a robust customer accommodation and staunchness benefits for frequent customers.
We are already at the onset of launching our customized offering in home furnishings for every household as per their taste and interior decor of individual home and office by our seasoned team.
Last but not the least, The Isabis Art Cafe will be an unique place where one can shop from our luxury range of products and at the same time experience live performances with delectable finger food.