Small Is Beautiful: Stories Of 06 Founders Who Have Built Profitable Online Businesses In Dhaka With Little Or No External Funding
How Four Dimensions Built A Strong Business Using A Simple Strategy: An Interview with Mostafizur Rahman, CEO and Designer, Four Dimensions
When Mostafizur Rahman, CEO and Designer of Four Dimensions, a fashion retailer selling designer bags and t-shirts in Dhaka, decided to start his business along with two of his friends in 2007, starting a business was neither a trend nor an easy job. Moreover, selling bags was a challenging affair given the competition in the market from Chinese and local products. But Mr. Rahman felt a demand for great quality designer bags in the market. “The journey of Four Dimensions, which I started along with two of my friends in 2007 when I was still a student of Fine Arts, is more of a personal story. Back in those days, I was an avid follower of youth trends. I was particularly fascinated by design of bags and at any given time, I used to have several bags in my collection, says Rahman. That fascination for bags led to the founding of Four Dimensions.
Today, Four Dimensions has a thriving business. Apart from its two retail locations in Dhaka, it also sells through its website, social media platforms and on platforms like Ajkerdeal. It has a studio manufacturing facility that employees over 25 people and is growing consistently.
Over the past years, through offering great products and excellent customer service, it has built a loyal community of customers that remain its key channel for growth and promotion. We recently spoke to Mr. Rahman to know more about his journey to what he is doing today, the current state of Four Dimensions, playbook he used to break into a cluttered market like bags and his thought on building a business from scratch. This brilliant story of passion, hard work, and dedication is brought you by AjkerDeal.
The Story Of Alvina’s Fashion World: Alvina Akter On How She Built An Online Fashion Business From Scratch
When Alvina Akter, founder of Alvina’s Fashion World, an online fashion seller, decided to start her online shop she had very little idea of how the world of internet selling works. She just finished a three months internship at Onnorokom Group as part of her undergrad program where she first came to know about the immense potential of eCommerce and how people are using Facebook and other platforms like Ajkerdeal to sell products online and start small businesses.
Ms. Alvina came from a business family. Her family has been in the clothing business for the past 25 years and she knows a thing or two about clothing and fashion. After much thought, she decided to try the world of digital commerce, first by buying things online, to experience and understand the medium, and then selling through different groups on Facebook before opening her own Facebook page. Initially, she sold imported products such as Pakistani and Indian products and gradually has moved on to launch her own in-house designs.
One thing leads to another, today Alvina’s Fashion World has over one lakh followers on its Facebook page, sells on platforms like Ajkerdeal and is a growing business. We recently spoke to Alvina Akter to know more about her journey, the state of Alvina’s Fashion World and her future plans for the business.
Story Of FRNDz Lifestyle: One Founder’s Journey From Humble Beginning To Building A Profitable Online Fashion Business In Dhaka
Mehedi Hasan, Founder and CEO of Frndz Lifestyle, has a BBA and an MBA from North South University (NSU) and Dhaka University (DU) respectively. After completing his BBA from NSU he worked for a year at a company while pursuing his MBA from DU in the evening.
This was 2014 and online business was a relatively new thing in the town. But Hasan realized that the way technology was taking over many industries across the world, it would not take much time online businesses go big in Bangladesh.
Hasan, along with two of his friends, opened a Facebook page in 2014 sitting in the lobby of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Hall of Dhaka University and officially launched their business.
After that, the journey was not easy. A couple of months into business, his two partners decided not to continue. His family was not convinced that after having business degrees from two of the top universities in the country why one would pursue an uncertain career. Withstanding much of these challenges with courage and patience, Hasan has come a long way.
In this interview, brought to you by Ajkerdeal.com, Hasan shares his journey to what he is doing today, explains why he started Frndz Lifestyle and how he built it into a profitable business and trials and tribulations of entrepreneurship and his ambition for the company going forward.
A Message From Ajkerdeal.com
Our ambition is to make sure that your business thrives in this new digital world.
At Ajkerdeal.com, every day we strive to be better in order to make sure that your business reaches the maximum number of customers. Our goal is simple: empowering small and medium enterprises to reach out to the customers they otherwise would not be able to reach.We are the largest managed marketplace in the country. Learn more here.
Nitai Sarker (Partha) is the founder and CEO of Ortha, a Dhaka based premium home-decor brand with a specific focus on the bedsheet. Started with a small personal saving as an investment and one man operation, the company is now a team of three and generates a couple of hundreds thousands taka in monthly revenue and has become one of the promising online home-decor brands.
That said, while Ortha now has a steady and growing business, the story of Partha is not as straightforward. Rather, it is a story of struggle, difficulties and sheer persistence. Mr. Partha has seen and endured an abundance of hardships starting from a lengthy period of unemployment, that too after graduating with a BBA degree, a growing reality for many young graduates in the country, and working without pay and more. Even after starting Ortha, as a solo founder, he had to do almost everything of the business for a long time starting from sourcing to delivery of products. Some of those stories are incredibly moving.
The one advantage, however, Mr. Partha has always enjoyed is his strength of character and ability to endure. Instead of giving in to despair, challenges often has made him resilient. Instead of sitting around, he has always tried things which eventually led to the founding of Ortha.
This story, supported by Ajkerdeal.com, is about the journey of Mr. Partha to what he is doing today, about the reality many young people have to endure in our society, about Ortha, about entrepreneurship and about what it takes to build something from scratch. This story is about life.
The Story of Style Mart: How Starting Small and Dogged Determination Helped This Founder To Build A Profitable Online Business In Dhaka
In 2013, Md. Saiful Islam, Founder and CEO of Style Mart – a Dhaka based online fashion retailer, started an online business named ‘03 Shop’ jointly with his two friends. The same year he graduated with a degree in Electronics and Telecommunications Engineering (ETE) from one of the leading private universities in the country. “A few months into the business, we realized that the business was not doing well in reality,” says Mr. Islam. “We were losing money. Despite that, we decided to continue for few more months. But after around 9 months we decided to pull the plug due to recurring losses. We lost quite a bit of money trying ‘03 Shop’. That was my first business and first major failure.”
“Failure is often a deal breaker for many” but Mr. Islam decided to try again. In 2014, he gathered a small capital from family and friends and started an online small business.
“When I decided to start Style Mart,” says Islam, “I consciously decided to start it small. This was a lesson I learned from our failure in the first venture which failed despite the fact that we had started it with a relatively handsome investment.” Today Style Mart brings in half a million taka in revenue per month and employs five people and growing.
In this interview, brought to you by Ajkerdeal.com, Mr. Saiful shares his journey to building a profitable online business, trials and tribulations he has had to endure, lessons from his journey and his future plans for Style Mart.
Abu Rizve Al Hosaine is the Founder and CEO of Ritzy, a Dhaka-based fashion brand. Ritzy, originally started as a side project in 2010 when Mr. Rizve was still an undergrad student at East West University, has a thriving business today and is a team of almost 20.
In this interview, brought to you by Ajkerdeal, Mr. Rizve reflects on his journey, trials, and tribulations he has had to endure and illustrates how he has built a fashion brand from scratch.