Women entrepreneurs from all over the world have shown that with hard work and determination, they can overcome any obstacle and achieve great success in their respective fields. Many of these women, especially in India, come from humble backgrounds and have had to overcome challenges such as financial constraints, societal norms, and lack of support from their families and communities. However, they refused to give up and persisted until they achieved their goals.
One such woman is Disha Singh, the founder of fashion and lifestyle D2C brand Zouk, known for its vegan, cruelty-free and functional bags. However, starting a brand was not a cake walk for her. Born and brought up in a middle-class family with no history in business, Singh faced a fair share of challenges to make Zouk what it is today.
During the initial phase of her startup journey, Disha had to travel for more than four hours a day, from Goregaon to Dharavi in Mumbai, in search of artisans who could design the bags as per her needs.
“Women entrepreneurs or leaders are not taken as seriously as men in our country. When I used to go to Dharavi to find artisans for my brand, the people there thought I was just doing it because it was one of my hobbies. They didn’t see me as a professional who has come to find workers for her brand,” says Disha, talking about the hardships she faced while building the brand.
An IIM-Ahmedabad graduate, who quit her well-paying job to start her own venture, Disha was always enthusiastic about business. At a young age of eight, she used to collect books from people in her society and her two elder siblings to build her own small library during summer vacations. She even used to rent these books at a minimal price to society residents for a brief period. This not only depicts her business-mindedness but also her love for books as she is an avid reader.