Goa is not just a one-stop destination for a vacation. But is also home to several women who have followed their entrepreneurial dreams and made them happen. From salons, technology to the food business, women of Goa have made their mark in every sector. So here are few women entrepreneurs from Goa who inspire us to never give up
Women entrepreneurs from Goa
A childhood passion to design clothes for dolls landed Akshada Khanute in her own business venture, a fashion studio called Akxada Counto. Born and brought up in Goa, Khanute was always interested in fashion, although she doesn’t have any formal education in fashion designing. It was her passion alone that encouraged her to embark on the entrepreneurial journey.
At Akxada Counto, Khanute sells handmade clothes crafted by artisans, tailors and designers. It was not easy initially for Khanute to find craftspeople in Goa. Her start-up involved a lot of travel to collect raw materials, interact with artisans and more. But after 3-4 years of knowledge, experience and the advent of technology made the process easier. The designs and clothes at Akxada Counto are never repeated. Every garment is exclusively designed out of pure fabrics and good quality raw materials.
Akshada Khanute says that fashion is “being in your own skin and being comfortable in what you’re wearing.” There is no need to copy something or to go with the trend.
You can check the business here.
2. Ashwini Aditya
The hobby to cook turned into a catering business when Ashwini Aditya founded Shree Foods in Goa. It was established in 1996 from Aditya’s home with 1-2 workers. Today, it has become one of the well-known catering services for weddings, birthdays and parties in Goa with trained staff. The uniqueness of the service lies in the idea that it allows the customer to choose what they want to have. Moreover, through her outlet, Aditya claims they employ illiterate and financially weak boys to help them find a livelihood.
But even for her things were not served on a plate. She faced many challenges in the entrepreneurial field and personal life that threatened her motivation. Once, she had to prepare food for 500 people with just two untrained women helpers. She also met an accident that left her bed-ridden for 3 months. But Ashwini Aditya was firm and dedicated. “Love your work and set your priorities, you will have to sacrifice something to achieve success. Be focused like an ant, the minute you get an obstacle find another way, don’t stop,” Ashwini Aditya says
You can check their business here.
3. Jayashree Parwar
Talking about periods is still taboo in our society. More so in villages where women are still unaware about or reluctant to use sanitary pads. But Jayshree Parwar undertook this seemingly impossible task of selling eco-friendly pads in the village of Goa. As a part of a self-help group named Saheli in Pilgao village of Goa, Parwar volunteered to take up the project of setting up a business of selling eco-friendly pads under the brand name Sakhi.
Hailing from a small village of Goa, it was not easy for Parwar to undertake this project. For the first two years, her venture, Sakhi pads, did not generate any revenue. It became difficult for her to pay her only assistant who was also a woman. “When I started selling the Sakhi Sanitary Pads, I observed that most people shy away from my stall. They used to laugh at me. But it did not change my perspective towards my products,” she says. But later, things changed. Today, her manufacturing unit is capable of making 100 packets per day. She also employs other women in villages. Sakhi pads sell only one variant of pads that have no wings. These pads are chemical-free, biodegradable and are made of pinewood pulp and eco-friendly papers. The Sakhi pads have marketed over 2000 pads since 2015.
Check out their business here.
4. Namita Tripathi
Namita Tripathi is an entrepreneur who is in the business of laundry which is considered to be a male-dominated field. She is the founder of Goa’s first upmarket laundry unit White Cloud. Started 18 years ago with support from family and friends, White Cloud now has multiple outlets in Goa. It is one of the most famous outlets for quality laundry service.
Trippathi originally belongs to Mumbai and moved to Goa after marriage. She always knew that a woman’s life is not restricted to household duties alone. But she is capable of doing much more. So with the support of her husband, she decided to start her own venture. Starting out, there was no laundry service in Goa like the ones in metropolitan Cities. And while doing her housework, she felt the dire need for laundry services. To bridge this gap, Tripathi launched the flagship store of White Cloud in 2000 and has not looked back since then.
5. Pallavi Salgonkar
A passion for desserts brought a charted accountant in the field of entrepreneurship. Pallavi Salgonkar is the founder of the dessert corner in Goa called ‘Dessert N More’. Talking about her unconventional passion and career path, Slagonkar says, “I have always loved eating sweets and desserts. Post marriage when I was based in Pune for some time, I tried some short-term bakery courses that triggered my passion for baking.” She hails from a small town in Goa and from a business-politico family. But Salgonkar decided to venture out of her comfort zone and start her own business. Today, Dessert N More has an outlet in every mall in Goa.
Along with being an entrepreneur, Salgonkar also shoulders the responsibility of Chairperson of Women’s Wing at GCCI (Goa Chamber of Commerce and Industry).
Check out her business here.