Perfect Home Solutions is a Bangalore-based venture, started in 2011 by a husband-wife team, Rajesh and Sangeetha who are very passionate about bringing quality products and solutions and have a large impact in healthcare. They offer products and solutions for quality-of-life related gaps indoors. One of their innovative products is Cactus moisture absorber, a product designed to provide a preventive solution for moisture related damages like the formation of fungus and mould in homes; pervasive damp and musty smells in bathrooms, kitchens and lofts.
Rajesh Krishnan shares with us about how his personal life experience led him to realize come up with innovative ways to tackle indoor problems.
Why did you decide to startup, what was the pain point?
After moving to our apartment in Bangalore, my wife had to painfully clean up a nasty mould infestation and even get rid of articles that were mould-ridden. She was getting tired of cleaning indoors frequently to get rid of the nuisance. So, in 2011, we decided to start the company. We figured that everyone must be going through this at least once, if not more. It is just an unspoken problem that is ignored or taken care of by frequent cleaning whose effectiveness is questionable and short-lived. Since both of us have a healthcare background, we sometimes wonder if allergies in our son could have been triggered by floating moisture and mould indoors at that time. We initially solved the issue by placing many sachets of silica gel throughout the house. That helped a lot and she didn’t have to clean so often and our stored articles were not being damaged any more. Plus, the smells were not there anymore, this looked exciting and there was an opportunity that was presented to us.
What pushed you over the edge to startup?
A personal experience exposed us to the real existing. We also recognized that with an evolving lifestyle in urban India, indoor air quality suffers from stagnant moisture. We realized that need is also large. The solution we had in mind was straight forward and simple, though poses some technical challenges. The strength of our backgrounds; an inclination for product solutions and the fact that we can actually solve it pushed us into taking the jump.
We also did a small test marketing effort locally by selling silica gel which validated our hypothesis. A lot of people who came to our stall in an apartment exhibition related to the problem and were very happy that there is a solution. The concept turned out to have a life.
What is your opportunity in this space?
Cactus moisture absorber is a non-food category fmcg product. It is a very large industry and seeing a good double digit growth uniformly. Our product falls in the air care category, where the growth rates are in the 25-30% range. As people get busier, with growing aspirations and global influences, modern urban lifestyle will continue to fuel the growth and the market is very accepting of innovative solutions.
Our current target is urban households and primarily home makers. We believe we can effectively market to them and there is a some primary sense of the need.
Who are your competitors in this space?
It was interesting that there are a couple of companies out of Mumbai who trade in this category of products through same channels. We are however the only Indian manufacturer of these goods for the consumer market. We differentiate ourselves by being innovative, innovating fast and by being able to provide products that are more affordable than expensive imports.
What challenges did you face and how did you overcome them?
Funding is a significant challenge and it is an ongoing process. Most of the R&D work was done with samples received from various suppliers. Having immediate family support is essential, just for the emotional quotient. Biggest challenge is realizing that every decision will have an effect on your survival. So, it is prudent to take time especially when you know every decision counts. We are generating revenue on a monthly basis and looking to add more stores. At the moment, Cactus products are available in about 10 retail outlets including supermarkets and hypermarkets.
You can check out more about PerfectHomeSolutions or you can get connected to Rajesh Krishnan here.