Madhya Pradesh is called the ‘Heart of India’ because of its unique location – right in the centre of the country. Besides the fact that the state has an agrarian economy, it is the only state has the largest reserves of diamond and copper in India. Plus, the state’s tourism industry is flourishing.
In particular, the Madhya Pradesh Government has been supporting entrepreneurs/self- employment by providing an enabling environment for both job creation and entrepreneurship. So, women wanting to branch out on their own, can get good scope to work out their plans here.
Here are some women entrepreneurs, who are creating waves in the state of Madhya Pradesh.
> Umang Shridhar, Founder, KhaDigi
The background is an inspiring success story. Tracing back, the story started with a noble cause – with a young girl launching her own company – to help the artisans of her village. Having completed her graduation from Delhi University, Umang Shridhar, Founder, born in a small village in Madhya Pradesh, made a critical decision. Instead of opting for a corporate career, she decided to do step out – to elevate the condition of local weavers and artisans of her village (as they had dismal working conditions). In 2013, KhaDigi was born – a handcrafted fabrics company which works on a B2B basis, selling their products directly to retailers. The name originates from ‘Khadi’ and digital technology is used to print the fabric.
This was her huge effort towards reviving Khadi, coupled with the promise of ensuring that the artisans and weavers benefit from this work. It was significant that UmangShridhar featured in Forbes 30 under 30 list of young achievers. Not only is she a socialentrepreneur, but she is also a champion of sustainable fashion.
The business model takes into account the real needs of the local artisans, and does not work only for profits. Through her initiative, she is also empowering women in the dark regions of Madhya Pradesh that are infamous for dacoits, by providing them specific training in spinning and weaving. This gives them a means of livelihood and financial independence. KhaDigi plans to open more canters in India and employee more and more artisans too.
> Elisha Ruth Parmar, Founder, Digital Crew
Based at Indore, Digital Crew is a one-stop service provider in India – for all your digital solutions. It is propped up by a vision to help all business owners to access high-quality, custom-developed solutions, irrespective of the size of their business. Headed by Elisha Ruth Parmar, Founder, they are a team of creative, skilled workforce with an innovation and growth mindset. They are a one-stop shop for all your Blockchain, Metaverse, Mobile Apps, Software and iGaming development services in India.
> Shreshtha Bhutra, Founder, Clothing Innovations Pvt Ltd
Clothing Innovations was founded in 2017 by Shreshtha and Mayur Malpani. The company offers ‘Armour’ technology, a patent-pending formula, that ‘factory treats’ fabric to make it free from any infection; and the unique fact is that it ensures total repulsion of insects like mosquitoes, flies, ticks, chiggers, ants, etc.
The bootstrapped startup from Indore provides treatment on all kinds of fabrics (except silk and velvet), and also sells its own range of insect-repellent, anti-microbial, and anti-bacterial fabrics and apparel for children and adults.
> Ms. Archana Bhatnagar, Founder President, Madhya Pradesh Association of Women Entrepreneurs (MAWE)
Madhya Pradesh Association of Women Entrepreneurs (MAWE) was started in 2000 – with the aim to encourage entrepreneurship in women and to help existing women entrepreneurs. It was Ms. Archana Bhatnagar the Founder President, who took up the challenge of conceptualizing an association for women entrepreneurs and formed MAWE – Madhya Pradesh Association of Women Entrepreneurs. Backed by 4 decades of entrepreneurial experience, through MAWE, she focuses on encouraging sustainable entrepreneurship in women, primarily to make them self-reliant.
What is prominent is that many women entrepreneurs are under this umbrella. With over 2 decades of experience, besides providing opportunities to women entrepreneurs, they also organize trade fairs. They also help in networking, they teach branding and computers and even made business cards for the women entrepreneurs, who work under them. Women running micro-enterprises approach them with the determination to grow, in spite of being held back by challenges from markets (or even their families!). Over the years, MAWE has successfully assisted micro women entrepreneurs to be self-employed. Apart from this, they also have access to finance, technology and international markets too.