Journey of an Indian woman to become a successful entrepreneurSoumya Suravarpu
What defines success? For some it’s the amount of money lying in their bank, for some it’s the desire to be on the cover of the Forbes magazine. For this 35 year old woman who has made a mark in the wedding industry, her ability to maintain work life balance defines success.
Beginning of a journey..
For Poonam, her family was always been the top priority and she still believes that everything is possible if one’s values are intact. Poonam who was a beloved child to her parents, left her home in Andaman in 2000 to graduate from NITC in Civil Engineering. She met her life partner in that college who was 2 years senior to her. “It was the best decision of my life to get married to Mayank” says Poonam. Totally in love, Poonam decided to give her job amiss and settle down in Bangalore with her husband where he worked with IBM.
Their first house was in 7th Block Kormangala from where they could see the beautiful apartments of Prestige Acropolis. Belonging to an affluent family, it is not easy to settle down for mediocre things. Poonam recollects, “I always admired and thought to myself, how lucky are those and what an achievement would they have made in their life to be there in the high rise beautiful white apartment”. With an annual pay package of 6 lakhs, the couple could not afford their own vehicle. Even high auto fares would pinch them. So they asked their in-laws to give them their unused second hand scooty. “Mayank took half day and we went to pick up the scooty from the railway station, We were all excited to have our 1st vehicle , we jumped to ride the scooty as soon as we got , however it was not starting. We had to push the vehicle and take it to our home”. Even though these were not the rosiest of times for the couple, they made sure to enjoy every moment of their life.
Inception of the idea
Poonam who is used to having a comfortable life, took charge of her life and steered it towards what she always wanted.. lead her life like a princess. She did not want to settle for a mediocre life.
In 2009 the couple brainstormed about doing some business, Bangalore being a garden city they decided to start flowers trade. At that time, their son was just 1.5 months and Poonam would go to the farms in Hosur where she found a place to buy flowers – Tan Flora. Without any proper guidance, Poonam kept persisting her efforts in flower trade.
Destiny and hard work
Once the MD there spotted her purchasing flowers with her infant in one arm. With his introductions, the couple began import export of flowers, imports from Holland and export to Singapore and UAE, and a few premium buyers in india as well. This was the beginning of their entrepreneurial journey.
It was never Poonam’s dream to become an entrepreneur but her will to do something extraordinary brought her at the doorstep of this situation. “Our 1st shipment was to Singapore , when all of us in the family including my mother-in-law sat packing flowers for the shipment , I cannot forget how we stood in the City market selling the rejected flowers from export in the chilly morning at 3 am with all drunkards roaming around the place, city market is a sale point of all flowers from Bangalore from 3 am until 8 am”, recalls Poonam.
The man who showed them the path..
In 2012, the couple came across a gentle man who used to run a flower décor company while collecting money against an import assignment. Many people had been trying to connect Poonam and her business to this man but failed in the past. The man spotted them and expressed his interest of passing on his business to someone who has a passion for this industry. He saw the potential in this industrious couple and involved them in his business. He predicted he had only 1-2 years of his life left and wanted to bring in Poonam and Mayank to take his business, his only possession, to new heights. He passed away exactly after 2 years. He left them with half-baked knowledge of the industry. “In his last stages, we took care of him as we would take care of our own blood relations.” – says Poonam.
Poonam and Mayank have carried forward that business to become one of the best wedding planners in Bangalore- PoonamMayankSharma. Their venture has only evolved with time. It is hard to say which played a bigger role.. her destiny, her hard work or her commitment to do something.
“Looking back, I feel we have achieved a lot during this time and most importantly we have earned a name in this busy city. People know us by our names which means a lot to us. Mayank is the most loving , supporting and the best husband anyone can ever be gifted with and both my kids are my most valuable possession”, says Poonam.
Today, Poonam and Mayank are proud owners of Audi A4 and a beautiful luxury apartment in the posh area of Kormanagala. Poonam describes this nothing less than a joy ride.. from mom’s scooty to Audi A4.