Entrepreneurs: Shubham Singhania & Mukund Mundhra
Business Name: Mooch Design Studio
Welcome to Entrepreneurs of India #startupstories episode 126
It all started with a boy’s passion to make something that fed his creativity. Shubham, the co-founder of Mooch, used to design notebooks. It was his way of unleashing his creativity. But to his surprise, his uniquely designed notebooks amassed a huge number of fans. His friends were his first customers. Later, when he went to Italy to pursue higher studies, Shubham did the same. He designed notebooks that swept his classmates off their feet. He took orders and imported the products to Italy! That’s how he self-funded his studies.
When he returned to India, Shubham had already realised his calling. He launched Mooch along with his friend Mukund Mundhra. Today, Mooch is one of the leading brands in India for customised products. It sells a wide range of items. What makes Mooch so special and different from its counterparts? The founders unravel the story.
1) How did you get your idea for this business?
Honestly speaking, there was no concept of a business plan when we began with MOOCH. It seemed to happen by itself. We were looking to do something different and innovative. One thing led to another and then things just fell into place.
2) Why is “now” a good time for this idea to exist?
At Mooch, we don’t solve problems in isolation. We identify an emotional need and we create a product around the need to fill the niche. The overarching desire is for the customer to retain a warm memory based on the feel-good-factor of using our product. So that he/she establishes an emotional rapport with MOOCH to the point of being curious to find out what’s new.
3) What was the reaction from your family when you first decided to become an entrepreneur?
Initially when we began, like all orthodox families even our parents had a lot of questions, “yeh kyun karna hai ? Job kyu nahi kar lete? Kaise kroge?” and so on. Thankfully, we have been very fortunate that, despite their worries and concerns, they were still supportive, not so much about the idea as the belief in us that KUCH TOH ACHA KAR HI LENGE.
4) What was your biggest mistake in business and what did you learn from it?
We consider it like a learning process everyday, the road that we have chosen, complete with pitfalls and potholes which are bound to keep tripping us every now and then. However, the frequency and severity of the mistakes – missteps, if you will – has been diminishing with each passing day. And we are secure in the knowledge of our belief “ अति गति में दुर्गती।“, don’t rush with what you are doing, give it time for a fruitful result.
5) What is the biggest obstacle in the next 12 months and how will you overcome it?
It’s been more than 3 years we’ve started the Brand and we still don’t have our own website. We had more than our fair share of teething troubles which kept us occupied. However, in the coming 12 months the hurdle that we have to overcome is launching our website.
6) What habits contribute to your success?
Right from childhood, we have had this habit of thinking differently to the extent that conventional ways of looking at thing and regular problem-solving methods do not appeal us. Some would say that this out-of-the-box thinking has greatly helped us achieve whatever we have.
7) If you had the opportunity to start this business again what would you do differently?
There is no denying that we would have been a far greater commercially profitable story had we gone in with a well laid-out plan. So yes, if we had this opportunity, we would have constructed a website first, put the systems and processes in place and done our budgeting for at least the first couple of years.
8) What is your favorite inspirational quote?
As quoted by Mahatma Gandhi “Be the change you want to see in the world.” Life changes are inevitable, we need to bring out change in that one area we have control over and model the world that we want to see. It doesn’t mean that you have to change for others, it simply means If every single person transforms for themselves the wrld would be a better place to live in.
A small poetry that really inspires us is,
“ तू रख हौसला वह मंज़र फिर आएगा,
प्यासे के पास चलकर समंदर फिर आएगा,
थक हार के न रुकना ऐ मंज़िल के मुसाफिर,
मंज़िल भी मिलेगी और मिलने का मज़ा भी आएगा।“
Keep encouraging yourself everyday, don’t stop when you are tired, don’t stop if you are stuck with problems, just don’t stop at any given point, keep working hard and keep doing good, because one day for sure you will achieve what you’ve been striving for.
9) Where do you find inspiration?
This small world is filled with inspirations everywhere, its omni present just like air. Its on us how we find one for our self. For example; The act of giving can be learnt from the trees around us. Every day there are people who are destroying the nature but then if you see the flip side the nature doesn’t stop producing oxygen for the same person to stay alive.
10) What is your favorite book?
“What they don’t teach you at Harvard Business School” by Mark McCormack. As the title suggests, the book is an account of a corporate guru’s experiences in setting up and running successful businesses using street knowledge and intuitive wisdom, alongside the process-driven analytical methods taught at business schools.
11) What advice would you give to someone starting out?
Be patient and don’t rush. Think you have given birth to a baby and it will take time to grow and stand on its feet. Then it will start walking slowly and if you keep your patience intact soon before you even realize it will start to run.
Just keep 3 P’s in mind : Passion, Patience and Perseverance.
A business sustains only when you put an extra-profit element into it. For Shubham and Mukund, Mooch is not just a business. They intend to create an emotional rapport with the customers. When a customer buys a product from them, he or she feels emotionally connected to the brand. That’s the success mantra of Mooch.
So always give beyond the expectations of your customers and work hard. Thank you, team Mooch for sharing your inspiring startup story.
Click here to follow Mooch on Instagram.
Check out the recommended book now!