Shri Kamala, the founder of SSP MARKETING INC grew up in a middle-class orthodox family like most of the Indian girls. She started earning her bread when she was 15 years old by taking tuitions after school hours for students. After completion of SSLC, she joined a Diploma course in Commercial Practice to facilitate not only her part-time job but also to start a career immediately after studies as the family called for it. She finally started her career as a Stenographer when she was 18 years old. Having worked in a couple of companies, her last service was in an Animal Nutrition Company as an Import Export Officer for a period of 6 years. She resigned from her job in 2002 due to domestic problems and went back to educating students at home. She always dreamt that she would become an independent entrepreneur and achieve something extraordinary than just being an employee or a housewife. These aspirations motivated her to become an independent woman entrepreneur. She got her first break in 2006 when she came across an advertisement in a newspaper published by M/s.SISI (MSME). She took a training pertaining to Manufacturing of Cleaning products and toiletries like Liquid Soap, herbal Phynyle, Fabric Whitener, etc. and started a Company, SSP MARKETING INC., (earlier registered as Panchajanya Agencies) in October 2006, registered at I&C (EM part II). As the business was first-generation business, she did not get any financial support from the family for which her own savings were shelled out. Even though the growth was very complicated and mind-numbing initially, it turned into a challenge as the days passed. In the first phase of 2 years, she tried out with the retail market but failed as sustaining the competition with regards to price was critical and also suffered from monitory returns. The resurvey of the market took a new marketing strategy which required a diversion of business towards bulk packing and the requirement of the products was abundant in many Educational Institutions, Hospitals, Hotels, Pharma, and Food industries in the mainstream. Further, in 2008, she applied for a plot at KSSIDC I/E Magadi and in 2015, all the formalities related to land purchase were completed and she started her journey with the corrugating industry.
Thanks for being with us today!!
Mounika: Give us a brief overview of the company & what was a reason for the company setup?
Shri Kamala:I started the business with the manufacturing of cleaning products but the competition was so high that I had to work out for diversification of business to be in this corrugating field.
Initially, I had applied for a KSSIDC plot in Magadi 13 years ago and the allotment was pending due to multiple issues. In 2014 there was an announcement from KSSIDC that the plots in Magadi and other places are being auctioned and interested folks can bid them. Meanwhile, there were quite a good number of inquiries for corrugated boxes. So I decided to attend the auction and purchase the land. Faced a setback when I understood that there was no training for taking up this particular business in the corrugation industry. It was difficult but I took up the challenge and started researching, created reports, and visited several units to have practical knowledge and commenced a unit after collecting all the background knowledge for operations.
“SSP” designs and manufactures customized Corrugated boxes according to the shipping needs and measurements. We analyze the products, design the qualitative cardboard boxes and our services are cost-effective options for topnotch Corrugated box supply. Our products are manufactured under the strictest standards of quality and ISO 9001–2015 Certification is a Milestone in our process front. We deliver a customized range to packing support which offers a great value to our customers by providing excellent performance economically. The Head office is situated at Magadi Road, Bangalore, and Manufacturing Unit is at Magadi KSSIDC Indl with experienced personnel. Our sole aim is to deliver high standards of quality products & services to our customers.
Where do you see your company in a couple of years from now?
Earlier the turnover was not that satisfactory but currently, I am able to get in touch with many companies and able to increase the turnover and hoping to get into the government tenders soon.
What are the biggest assets for the company?
Self-confidence and my good staff!!
What challenges did you face in the initial years? What would you have done differently from today’s perspective?
As a woman, the very first word is proving myself capable was not easy. Monitory constraints, managing family, and business at once was a great deal of work. Yes, I had to face a lot of critics but I exerted it as a booster to pull myself upward and take one baby step at a time.
I always believe that we should be in pace with the situation or the requirement of the market and at the same time, we must ensure that we are safe in the right course of action without jeopardizing the business built thus far.
What are the major changes that happened in the packing industry in recent years?
As of now, there are many biodegradable boxes, fragrant boxes (china make) and there are machines which can manufacture boxes with foil packing or plastic wrapping, etc.,
What are the most important steps you have taken to create value for the customer?
I always believe honest and timely service, quality maintenance along with an economic price are the major key points that hold our customers with us in the long run. As long as the customer is confident about the supplier, we are sure to be successful. This is the only Mantra of customer relations I have followed all these years.
What is your greatest learning in this journey?
To keep the self-confidence at 100% and Ego at 0%. Patience and proper planning are vital for any business to grow.
How do you face competition from originating manufactures?
It is something that each and everyone has to be prepared at every step of life. So constantly we should be considering new developments that can be taken up and if that is not affordable, new opportunities for diversification should be contemplated that can help the original business sustain.
How did you see the overall growth of the industry in India
In our country, there is huge competition as well as endless opportunities. But the overall growth of the industry entirely depends on the shoulders of the sales plan. I am sure there is still room for growth and development.
Thanks for your time !!
Edited by Aneesha Arani