Gautam Macker and Neeti Macker, the duo enjoys traveling worldwide and it was on one such trip to Europe that they came across designer kitchens and accessories. The Mackers saw the potential of implementing designer kitchens in India and from the past 18 years, they have done several projects with big players in real estate industry such as Emaar MGF, Jaypee, Omaxe, Ansals, m2k, Pearls, Paramount, and more.
Together, they co-founded The Homemakers, a brand name under which they manufacture modular furniture for kitchens, wardrobes, wall units, bathroom vanities and powders of various polymers. Keeping up with times, they aim to launch an ecommerce portal named, kitsforhomes.com in the next 3 years.
Please provide a brief overview of your product/ service.
We are into manufacturing and retail of high-quality designer modular furniture, specializing in kitchens and wardrobes for the past 18 years. Our raw material is largely sourced from Europe, which is our USP since we have exclusive contracts with most of the companies we deal with. We would like to be considered not just as product but service based company as well because installation and after sales service is also equally important in our industry.
What inspired you to build the above product/ service?
I love to travel, and while on such a tour to Europe, I came across designer kitchens and accessories, which really fascinated and inspired me. People out there were already doing up their Kitchens with the help of professionals who specialized in this field. In India, back then, while the living room was overrated, the kitchen, which actually is one of the most integral parts of any household, was the most neglected. I felt this was the industry I wanted to be in. I wanted to make wonderful kitchens for women, as we spend a major part of our lives in the kitchen. Besides, the industry was absolutely unorganized and there was a lot of ambiguity between what the client wanted and what a local carpenter finally delivered. People had aspirations but not the product availability.
What is your life mantra?
Live life each day. Life is a roller coaster ride, enjoy the ups and downs as you ride along.
What was the most challenging part of your journey till now?
The most challenging part of the journey has been changing the mindset of people towards these new age products. When I started off, this was still an industry unheard of by most people in India and was certainly not ventured into often by women.
I still remember during my initial years, the effort, which was required to convince not just the clients but also their carpenters and architects about the advantages of a modular kitchen, the drawer slides, new generation hinges and kitchen accessories. People were skeptical about the practicality and benefits of these products and looked at them with suspicion. Carpenters were often heard saying this wouldn’t work in India and these products are not suitable for Indian homes.
Share some details about the investments that you have been able to fetch for the business till now.
Ours has always been a private limited company, and all investments done so far have been over the years. We have invested more than Rs. 60 million, and most of it in infrastructure time and again, as we believe, the foundation needs to be strong enough before a company intends to branch out and grow.
We have not raised any funds so far from external sources. However, for our new e-commerce venture, we would soon look out for venture capitalists, who believe in long term gains rather than a quick money and exit route. Our business plans are well in place, and if all goes well, once we prove our hypothesis in the market through our e-commerce portal, we would not need too much convincing. Our financial projections and sales figures would be able to do that. We may look out for PE funding even for The Homemakers to expand extensively under the brick and mortar business model.
According to you, what are the three qualities an individual must have to achieve success?
Passion, Vision and Knowledge.
Which online tools/ services/ apps do you use the most and would like to recommend as well?
Google maps, linkedIn, and news online.
Share any one habit which you think makes you more productive.
I don’t give up very easily. I remind myself each day of what I intend to achieve and work towards it.
Share any one habit which you wish to change in yourself.
Get very upset if deadlines or milestones set are not met. Many times would react to a situation without giving it much thought and may regret on my reaction later.
Answer in less than 50 words
Focus on what would give you happiness and what you truly believe in. Work everything around it. Never give up come what may, as I firmly believe there is no shortcut to success.
- One mistake you believe every individual must avoid:
We believe what people say more than we believe in our capabilities. We always look for assurance and endorsement from others rather than from within.
- One most important lesson that you have learnt till now:
Take inputs from others, weigh all the pros and cons with an open mind, take an informed decision, then never look back and regret. Focus all your time, energy and efforts into whatever you have finally decided on and do not pause till you achieve what you have desired to achieve.
What are your plans for next 3 years?
Want to launch and establish our new e-commerce portal, kitsforhomes.com, into various cities as planned. Would like to see our kitchens in kits being sold off the shelf through major premium hardware stores pan India. Introduce a wider range of premium products into home Interiors segment.
If you get a chance to start your career again what would you do differently this time?
I think I would get on to social media much sooner for sure launched my e-commerce portal by now.
What are your top three getaway destinations?
Mauritius, Switzerland, and Dubai.
Share a quote that inspires you the most.
“Don’t worry about failures, worry about the chances you miss when you don’t even try” by Jack Canfield.