Sara is an international brand in the domestic apparel industry. Sara Lifestyle Limited, a sister of Snowtex, an export-oriented brand in the textile industry. Beginning its journey on May 12, 2016, in a short time, ‘Sara’ is a trusted name in the country’s apparel industry. International quality products with beauty and low quality have brought the company to the top of popularity. Director Sharifunessa Reba spoke to the Bengali Tribune about the company’s path, present and future views. He studied journalism from Dhaka University. He has also done journalism. She later joined the business of SM Khalid, the founder of Swami Snowtex. Interview by Subarna Asif.
Chillreport: Snowtex is one of the leading and established brands in the country. Why Travel From Snowtex to Lifestyle LimitedThe
Sharifunessa Reba: We make Snowtex products for outsiders. When we go abroad, we go to the mall there, we see our things – Made in Bangladesh. Their cost is also very high. But not everyone in our country goes abroad. Those who go again, not everyone can buy at such a high price. This is where we get this idea. Since most of the people in our country are middle class, everyone can buy if the price is kept low. The prices of the products we export are very high, making these products within the reach of the people. People cannot say once upon a time. In a word, good things at low prices. Thus Sara’s journey from Snowtex.
Chillreport: Currently, Sara is a trusted name in the textile industry. How is it possible to reach this point in such a short time?The
Sharifunnessa Reba: Absolutely childish compared to Sara Snowtex. 2 years only. Sara’s journey began with Snowtex. Snowtex started in 1998 as a buying house. About three or four hundred of those who worked with us at that time are still there for 20-22 years. We have used their experience. Also, since Sarah’s journey is from Snoxtex, we have used Snoxtex’s experience. We also had some ideologies. Our goal is to deliver good things at a slightly lower price. Many people say, how can I give at such a low price? But we know how to make a good thing in low cost. We have been working on this earlier also. People consider price as well as a good thing. We want everyone to buy, low price but good thing. I guess this is the main reason for Sara’s situation in the short run. People are appreciative, want to buy.
Chillreport: I want to hear the story of the beginning of Sara
Sharifunnes Reba: Launched in 2016. Earlier, we have been thinking since 2015 how to do this. Since Snivet’s Sister Concern, that standard must be upheld. It took a little time to think about everything, research, sort things. Then on 12 May 2016 we started our first store in Mirpur. Then there are stores in Bashundhara, Mohammadpur, Uttara, Baridhara.
Bungalow Tribune: When will the journey begin outside DhakaThe
Sharifunessa Reba: We do not want to go outside Dhaka right now. We want to store something else inside Dhaka and then go outside Dhaka. But due to Corona, everything is stuck. We had to pick 6 more stores in Dhaka this year. Not possible due to corona. We have an agreement with Sapna. Swapna jackets are being sold in shops outside Dhaka including Rangana, Bogra, Sylhet and Rajshahi.
Chillreport: What kind of challenges have you faced since the beginning?The
Sharifunnesa Reba: Our retail brand is brand new. But since I had experience working with international brands, it worked. There were a lot of planning issues, whether or not to actually do it. There has been much research on how international brands work. Our team or the whole family was working on these. In a very short time, everyone has understood everyone’s work. Those who were senior in Snowtex also helped a lot. Some details were about interior decorating or how to fold the fabric. Not a challenge at all, fear worked. But those who were with us are getting work in no time. There are many changes in the design now than before. Nothing happens in a day, it took so many years for Snowtex to come to where it is today. In fact, there is no end to learning, we are also learning. Efforts are being made to find out how to make the product accessible to the people.
Chillreport: Plans to establish Sara in world marketThe
Sharifunessa Reba: Absolutely. If you ask me what are our future thoughts? Then I will say that I want to see Sarah in the same position as Snowtex is internationally recognized. But not now, 5–10 years later. When you go out of the country, you want to see Sara’s products and stores in the world’s big malls. Dreaming is no longer allowed. Snowtex was small like Sarah at one time. If Snowtex can take its place internationally, then Sara.
, Journalism is not a businessThe
Sharifunessa Reba: If there is a disturbance in the human system, it is difficult to go back to the previous path. When I was in university I used to contribute. I got some money, as a student it seemed like a lot of money. It would have been a complicated income. It was very funny. I am also earning and learning again. Then I got into journalism. I have learned a lot in the meantime which is useful now. I left the job after the concept. Then the child grew up and went to school. Then the boy was born, thus creating a difference. The plan was to return to journalism. But after this gap was created, there was a fear that I would be able to keep pace with journalism. But I can’t sit still, so I join Sara. But I miss journalism time. My partner is still in journalism. I was comfortable introducing myself as a journalist, the timing was great fun. But now I am also enjoying business. I am able to work 100% independently in business.
Chillreport: The trend of youth becoming entrepreneurs is increasing, What is your advice for new entrepreneursThe
Sharifunessa Reba: Many people in Corona are also making their debut with online business. They are very good. I know many women who see that they cannot do anything. The housewives are full of enthusiasm, but they are also doing much better business now. My advice is that no business, no business can be considered small. People grow up from a young age. I will not do this work, it is a small work, it cannot be considered. You do not need to aim too big in the beginning. If I focus on the work that starts with small work, I will do it honestly. If you have the mindset then you will get success.
Chillreport: As a successful female entrepreneur, what kind of environment do working women feel they should have?The
Sharifunessa Reba: We need a friendly environment for all boys and girls in the workplace. I got a good atmosphere while I was working. Those of us working here are having lunch with others. We also provide specialized care for pregnant women and napkins for all. There is childcare for infants, I am arranging food for a 3 month old baby. Now many offices have such a system. I heard that the children in your office also live in the office with their mother. I think that all of us or others who are providing such benefits, all the workplace needs to ensure these benefits. This will make it easier for working women to work. Then they will be able to work in peace. The level of work will increase.
Chillreport: What are your expectations about the whole lifestyleThe
Sharifunessa Reba: The entire lifestyle is expected to maintain buyer satisfaction in the future. Now such buyers are expressing satisfaction with our product. I am working hard to keep buyers happy. Many ask me, will I increase the price after a few years? But we do not have to do this, as our buyers now appreciate, we always want to receive this appreciation. So that buyers can always say, the whole lifestyle is getting good brands, good products at low prices. Then we can go much further. I will be able to make a place in the world market. I will be able to proceed only when I have to satisfy the first buyers.