Helmets Nepal is a one click platform for all kind of helmets and other bike accessories.
In an interview series of MyStartupVenture we have Miss Prarthana Saakha co-founder and Managing director of “HelmetsNepal“. She is a BBA student. She has also worked as National Consultant in United Nations OCHA.
Without a delay lets see a conversation, we had with Prarthana Saakha,
MSV : Can you tell us something about your startup.
On an average, almost 300 accidents occur daily in Kathmandu alone. People tend to avoid safety gear leading to death or a severe accident which would have been less so if proper safety gear had been utilized. Sometimes people avoid safety gears under the impression that they are unfashionable. We might not be able to prevent all of those accidents but making people aware of the available safety gears can provide a safer riding experience. That is where Helmets Nepal comes in, promoting ‘safety with style’. We are the first complete online store for safety gears serving customers throughout the country.
MSV : Our readers would like to know more about you.
I have spent 3 great years at Kathmandu College of Management (KCM) and I feel the word that best describes me during that time would be ‘social’. With just one more to go, i feel as if i have just barely scratched the surface of my potential. I have just taken my 1st step, i now face a journey towards a brighter future, one i intend on completing successfully.
MSV : How did you get idea for your startup? How did you get your funding?
I have had experiences working at different places. I got to meet lots of people and I had a really good learning opportunities. But I wanted to create something on my own. I wanted to implement what I have learned. When Sajal Joshi (cofounder) came up with this idea, it was just the right click. So it’s much like an idea meeting an opportunity. As for the funding, we started by taking helmets on credit and selling them to pay it off. We started with minimum seed fund. We started off using Facebook for promotion. Our web team ‘Web-Robo’ was also of great help during our initial phase, charging us with minimum cost. It was later that we set up a small office based entirely on the revenue earned.
MSV : Can you tell us more about your business partner?
Mr. Sajal Joshi, one of the most professional and dedicated person I’ve met. He seems to be less of an undergrad student and more of a CEO.
MSV : How big is your team?
Today Helmets Nepal Family has 9 experts everyone handling their own department, giving the best customer care and services possible.
MSV : How do you hire people and how do you make your employee happy ?
We don’t hire people for the sake of employment. We take in people sharing the same energy, passion and enthusiasm as us. We function more like a team rather than in an employer-employee relation.
MSV : Do you remember your first customer?
Yes I do. It was back when we used to go for delivery ourselves. He offered tea and told that he was very impressed by the product and prompt service. This was a proud moment for us which encouraged us more
MSV : Do you have any funny moment that you want to share with us?
I used to look after the marketing of our company and we had an event ‘Rider’s Photo Contest’. After the winner was announced, we decided to deliver the gift hamper ourselves as we had no office to invite them. I was waiting at Boudha Stupa carrying those helmets and goodies. There was this tourist who clicked my picture. I was so happy. Then he showed it to me. I looked tired and weary with all those boxes piled up in my hand. And he asked ‘Are you here to deliver things?’ It was an embarrassing yet a funny moment.
MSV : What challenges did you face in the initial stages of your startup and how did you overcome those challenges?
Working for one’s own self sounds really cool, especially for an undergrad student, but there is lots of hard work and dedication that goes unnoticed. I knew what I wanted to do but I didn’t know how to do it. Sometimes theory worked sometime it didn’t. Sometimes experience worked; sometimes the whole situation was different. But then those very moments were the fun parts. I had to step out of my comfort zone to tackle those problems. My family, friends, mentors and coworkers were always there to support me.
MSV : Have you ever felt like quitting?
There were times when all my friends were out for movies and I was stuck up with my work. Times when there are lots of assignments piled up but the finances for the day haven’t been cleared. Times when it’s my turn for a presentation at college and I’m in formals but then there is a delivery to be made nearby. There are also just some lazy days when I don’t feel like doing much but then I remember someone is on leave and so I’ll have to cover for them as well. But then those tough times will only make me stronger. Everyone needs to work, the difference is in the level of dedication, commitment and perseverance you give when it’s YOUR company.
Also read: Startup Struggles
The Market. It as taught me things, made me tougher, showed me ways, paved my paths and helped me grow
In the next Five years I will be initiating in taking Helmets Nepal to a new level, competing in the global market. The dream we dreamt for Helmets Nepal is yet to be achieved.
MSV : Do you like to say anything to our readers?
And to the riders, on behalf of team helmets nepal, I’d like to say ‘Ride safe, invest in your safety’.
Thank you so much MyStartupVenture 🙂 it feels good to share experiences.