Hi Guys! I hope you’re doing good.
Today I am going to interview Shabbar Syed, an Environment Enthusiast, an emerging Entrepreneur and the Head of Operations at Grass Spider. Grass Spider is an online store that is working on creating awareness on sustainable lifestyle and fashion in India by selling virgin, upcycled and recycled products. So let’s quickly get to know a little things about Shabbar and his startup.
1. How did your startup journey begin?
Ans. It all started with idea of creating awareness on organic farming. Three friends decided to start an organic food startup but my zeal for sustainable lifestyle and fashion lured me into starting Grass Spider.
2. Money is the lifeblood of any business, so were you approached by any investor?
Ans. Yes. A consulting company shortlisted for our startup for investment round but the finalization is yet to get completed by beginning of 2018. I am glad my documents are well verified and approved.
3. Oh that’s great. So, what is your key goal behind your startup?
Ans. There are multiple impact goals behind my startup. My primary goal is to spread awareness towards sustainable lifestyle and fashion in India. Some of my other goals are employment, empowerment and well being.
4. Wow! That’s incredible! What would you do if you inherited 1 million dollars tomorrow?
Ans. I will start a free service hospital because I feel that medical industry is so unrealistic and money mined these days. I wish I could reverse that somehow.
5. I really respect your point of view Shabbar and I wish you can start your own hospital someday. By the way, what is the most “go to” meal that you can cook and impress your wife?
Ans. It has to be Khidi (Marinated Yellow Rice)
I can only cook this dish alone. Good to be married to a wife who knows how to cook well J Cheers.
6. On a scale of 0-10, what do you think, how hot you are and why?
Ans. I would not be able to scale myself on this index. But as to give a try, I would say 7 on 10. As per my personal experiences, my crush found me hot when I started whispering things rather speaking in normal tone. Now beat that? 😛
7. Chuckles. So how did you decide your brand name? Why?
Ans. Branding name that was initially decided was “Social Economic Environmental” as we aimed for triple point problem solving approach through our business but we did basic level rebranding to make it peppier. Therefore, we switched brand name to Grass Spider where Grass represents green and the Spider is for the marketplace which acts as network for designer, buyer or sellers.
8. Wow. That was pretty smart! What is the biggest challenge you have faced in your entrepreneurship so far?
Ans. The biggest challenge for us is Startup Capital as our major chunk is “B2C” model. It is really challenging to scale up at a faster pace. We have started moving towards corporate gifting vertical with one client from overseas. It gives us a lot of hope. We will fetch few new ones to build our capital in-house. However, we are always open for investor proposals.
9. Challenges are everywhere and they actually build our strength. Who do you think is your biggest competitor at the moment?
Ans. Well we have not yet reached the point where we could do the rule of thumb but we can’t say no one else is doing something like this out there. Qtrove is one of the challenging competitors to us on the business timeline. However, we are sure we have a lot in our bucket when we scale up, so it’s always going to be healthy competition towards a sustainable future. We like the way Qtrove is impacting the sustainable fashion and lifestyle positively.
10. Last but not the least and I think the most challenging question.. If you had to give up all your customers or Rs. 1,00,000, what would you prefer losing and why?
Ans. I would prefer losing 1 Lakh as it can be rebuilt but the customer base or customer network is worth lot more than that. It is an experience.
So that’s it for today guys! I hope you really enjoyed this interview just like me. It was really good to have Shabbar at my happy place and I am thankful to him for his precious time 🙂
If you found Shabbar and his motive interesting, then please don’t forget to check out Grass Spider and shop the things you love. The cherry on the top is you can get upto 30% off if you sign up for their newsletter.