Driving the wheels of success
This husband and wife duo is always on the run. No, they are not another Bunty Aur Bubbly pair in the making and aren’t really hiding from cops. But managing Ahmedabad’s finest car rental and travel services firm that caters to customers across the country with their fleet of the finest cars is no mean task and Oorvaksh and Delnaz Medora are definitely on their feet most of the time. Started in 1986, Medora Car Rentals and Travel Services has become a prominent name in the travel and tourism industry in the past 20 years. Apart from well-maintained cars and trained, uniformed drivers at your disposal, this family-run organisation also caters to travellers’ other needs like ticket reservations and itinerary planning.
Medora is also is associated with well-known tourism organisations like Indian Association of Tour Operators, Gujarat Luxury Cab Owners Association and Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Limited.
In a freewheeling interview with YourStory, the duo reveals what fuels their passion for entrepreneurship and the travel industry.
Why did you decide to become an entrepreneur and not pursue a regular job?
Oorvaksh: What I like best about a business of my own compared to a job is that here, I am my own boss. I can fully realise potential and achieve success without any limit.
Delnaz: Well, I did pursue a job initially for two years and it was a wonderful experience. Though I enjoyed working and learnt a lot, I wanted to do a lot more with my ideas and vision for the travel industry, which I couldn’t implement if I was not on my own. I have always been very passionate about the travel industry and wanted to take unprecedented initiatives and bring lots of innovations and value for clients.
Can you tell us what kind of challenges you faced during the initial years?
Oorvaksh: Every day was, and continues to be, a struggle. I believe that the day you stop struggling, you stop growing.
Delnaz: Initially, it was a great challenge for us and we took it in the right spirit. We embraced long hours of hard work with the aim to get recognition and acceptance within the office as well as outside in the corporate world. We personally got involved in a lot of groundwork and sales activity so that we could connect with the clients on a one-to-one basis and tell them about our expertise, services offered and core competencies. Especially for me, a constant struggle of balance between work and family was an add-on, but I learned to prioritise things with time.
What was the turning point in your career?
Oorvaksh: The turning point in my career was the year 2004 when my wife joined the business. Along with the guidance of my father and the support of our employees, both of us united and formed a team to take the company. Use of Internet marketing as a marketing tool was another significant point in time, which helped in growth of the business with low investments and high returns.
Delnaz: Though there were a couple of them, one of the first one was a doctors’ event called TRICO held in 2004 & 2005 in Ahmedabad for which we handled the car rentals as well as entire to and fro air-ticketing. It was organised by Dr. Tejas Patel and was attended by doctors from all over India and many parts of the world. As a budding agency, it was our biggest assignments at that time, and it gave us a lot of encouragement and confidence when our work was appreciated.
Did you, at any point, feel like giving up on your venture?
Oorvaksh: Yes. Sometimes when some challenges went beyond my control, I did feel I would have been more comfortable putting the same efforts in a job and having a secure salary. However, that was just a temporary feeling that bothered till the high tide got over. Then, one gets ready to ride the next tide.
Delnaz: Yes, a lot of times when the pressure got too much and prolonged for 24 hours in a day, as compared to a job where the responsibility was on our head for just 8-10 hours. Afterthoughts also bothered at times when the returns were not as good as expected compared to the hard work put in.
What drives you?
Oorvaksh: Passion for growth and, of course, profit
Delnaz: My passion for the travel industry. I enjoy my work all the time and love making different itineraries for different destinations. We try to pamper our clients and give them the best we can. My true profit is when they return with happy memories from their tour.
Could you please elaborate on your business model?
Oorvaksh: We are in the travel business and cater to every travel need, except railway tickets because of low revenue and high manpower. While I concentrate on our core business of car rentals that was started by my father way back in 1986, my wife takes care of the rest. We believe our trump card is our service and we are constantly upgrading our service with valuable feedback from our clients, being innovative and staying abreast with market developments.
Delnaz: We are a one-stop shop for all travel requirements including domestic to international hotel booking, air-ticketing, overseas medical insurances, visas, international SIM card dealers and more. Slowly and gradually, we are broadening our clientele and trying to get clients from different parts of India and the world through networking and Web advertising.
What is the growth vision of your enterprise?
Oorvaksh: To be the No.1 car rental company in India.
Delnaz: Growth in international business, getting clients from different parts of the world and helping people travel to different and exotic destinations across the globe.
Can you give some tips to budding entrepreneurs?
Oorvaksh: Believe in what you are doing and never go for short cuts, they’ll make you fall faster than you grow.
Delnaz: Love your work and be passionate about it.