Manishankar Oils Pvt Ltd
Founded in 1998 in Jaipur
Founders: Dr Manoj Murarka, Sourabh Garg, and Yogesh Garg
Turnover: Rs 35 crore
Manishankar Oils is a manufacturer and exporter of cold-pressed, chemical-free, edible and cooking oils such as mustard oil, groundnut oil, and sesame oil etc.
“Today, when the world is diverting its taste towards refined edible oil, we produce cold-pressed mustard oil. Refined oil is produced using multiple chemical processes at a very high temperature whereas our oil is 100 percent chemical free and we use no external heating. Thus the nutrients of the oil are well maintained,” says Manoj Murarka, adding,
“As of today, India is importing 70 percent of its edible oil requirement, thus indigenous oil manufacturing is the best way to save a huge amount of foreign currency and to provide good and healthy edible oil to Indian consumers.”
Below are excerpts from interaction with Manoj Murarka about his manufacturing business.
SMBStory: How did you grow your company?
Manoj Murarka: My journey started when I completed my 12th Boards and secured the second position in Accounts Asiad in 1997. It was time for me to think about my future. Instead of depending on others for employment, I preferred to go for self-employment. I researched and felt that edible oil has great potential and India largely depends upon imported edible oils.
Whereas mustard oil being one of India’s healthiest oils, was losing its ground. As it was largely manufactured by the unorganised sector, the product was of inferior quality, had bad packaging, and unhygienic manufacturing practices, and was not branded.
Thus, the consumer diverted towards imported edible oils. I took it as a challenge and with
cooperation of my three friends we started a mustard oil manufacturing company in 1998 and commercial production in 1999. We started with an initial amount of Rs 20 lakhs.
Being a first-generation entrepreneur, the road to success was not easy. My friends left the organisation and the company’s responsibility came solely on my shoulders. Where there is a will there is a way. This kept me going. I never compromised with the quality and focused on customer satisfaction.
I enhance the efficiency of my factory and workforce with constant use of new technology and training. Slowly the product KABIRA mustard oil got consumer acceptance.
SMBS: What were the key milestones in your journey?
MM: We became the recipient of a number of awards, including Government of India’s National Award in 2016 by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Government of Rajasthan’s Udyog Ratan Award in 2017 by the then Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje, Indo Nepal Ratan Award, International Globoil Award, USA World Confederation Business Award, MY FM Food & Lifestyle Award, NDTV International MSME Award by MSME minister Giriraj Singh, India SME 100 Award by Kalraj Mishra, and the Pride of India Award.
SMBS: How are you differentiating from the competition?
MM: We supply our goods across India and parts of the world. We always manufacture cold-pressed, chemical-free edible oils as compared to chemically processed, heated, refined edible oil produced by our competitors.
SMBS: What are the challenges in terms of sustaining and growing the business?
MM: Some of the challenges are in getting finance and licenses. Marketing is another area of concern that we are trying to fix.
SMBS: What is your advice to people who want to set up their business in the same sector?
MM: I would say maintain quality, accept techonology, and believe that the customer is the boss.
SMBS: How do you manage critical areas such as supplier management, cash flow management, and capital management? Any tips for other business owners?
MM: Form individual departments and make a business plan for the next five years. And maintain all business pillars.
SMBS: What is your customer acquisition/channel strategy?
MM: Quality of the product is the best policy with reasonable price and timely
SMBS: What is your dream for your business in the future?
MM: We want to be the prominent supplier of cold -pressed, healthy edible oil in the world. Our future policy is to invest in R&D of the edible oils and help farmers to enhance the oilseed productivity.
SMBS: What are your expectations from the government?
MM: As MSMEs are usually maintained and run by individuals, the huge licences and returns liabilities are a major hindrance for the sector’s growth in this competitive global market.
SMBS: What are the top three leadership lessons that you have learned over the years that you live by?
MM: The first is, one should always be ready to hear complaints. Second, always consider employees an important part of the organisation. Third, hard work has no substitute.
SMBS: What are the biggest learnings from your business journey?
MM: My biggest learnings are that quality is the best policy, that hard work has no substitute, and that in your organisation, all members are an integral part of your success.
(This story is published in partnership with the MSME Ministry to showcase success stories of SMEs)