India is a country full of small and micro entrepreneurs who are highly potential to reduce the imbalances in the national economy. But somehow, most of these micro-entrepreneurs work in unorganized sectors and lack in business skills, need-based marketing trends, and technological tools to start and scale their business. Due to inadequate capital, knowledge, and mentorship, entrepreneurs in rural and semi-urban areas have limited market access and size. Often, meager sources of income, assets limitations and simultaneous pressure of supporting the family while stabilizing an enterprise and absence of guidance makes micro-entrepreneurs unable to take risks.
To bring out the maximum potent from the micro-entrepreneurs of Hubli – Dharwad areas, Navodyami program is initiated by Deshpande Foundation that works to make micro-entrepreneurship a viable proposition as a livelihood. It takes on the challenges faced by micro-entrepreneurs and creates an enabling condition for those who like to turn their ideas into action.
Maruthi Namdev Bandari has one such successful story who progressed and made a mark in making Kolhapuri Chappal. Maruthi is a leather craftsman from Madbhavi of Athani district who is into Kolhapuri chappal business from the past three generations.
Even after being a master of the business, Maruthi never thought of scaling up his business due to which his business was becoming unmanageable. “Now this is not the case, thanks to Navodyami. For us, Navodyami is nothing but an oasis, where we learnt many things like how to improve business by regularly maintaining accounts, file tax, how a margin can be set, how to approach a client, set targets, workmanship, costing etc., in total an entire progress of hassle free business.”, says Namdev Bandari.
Maruthi shared, “In 2013, I was introduced to Navodyami and from a very low income and turnover we reached to Rs.70, 000 in 2013 and now it is more than Rs. 2 lakh. We even outsource few works when the order is in bulk. Navodyami training boosted my confidence and now we are recognized well for our craftsmanship. The program also helped me learn the usages of technology and now we use online payment and orders which are easy and the fastest way of transferring money.”
Like Maruthi, Navodyami is helping many micro-entrepreneurs to scale up through their value- added training and mentorship programs.