Ashish Agarwal faced a difficult choice. Would he let go of a successful career in his dream company, in order to take an entrepreneurial gamble? After 4.5 years in Adobe Systems, having worked with multiple teams and great managers, Ashish Agarwal has the itch. Would he be passionate enough to pursue his dream of starting his venture, or carry on with his successful stint and perhaps one day retire from Adobe? Only time would tell how irresistible his itch was!
The e-commerce scenario was building up, Flipkart had converted to the marketplace model, Snapdeal was in news almost daily for one or the other developments and Amazon was setting its foothold in India. So, he teamed up with his MBA batchmates to make an accounting system for e-commerce sellers. It didn’t take them long to figure out that it wasn’t much needed and as they look back now, probably they were a bit ahead of time. Right after it, came another setback when his exclusive deal of selling products manufactured by one of his family friends fell through. Although he had many exciting ideas to pursue, with the shapewear market on the verge of boom and his exposure to the e-commerce ecosystem, launching his shapewear brand seemed most sensible. Thus, Adorna was born.
Running very low on cash, he had to do everything himself, from sourcing, transporting finished goods, or even packing products for final dispatches in addition to his core job of product and business development. Even his family pitched in. With his father and his wife busy with their respective day jobs, he teamed up with his mother and sister. They used to pack and ready the orders for dispatch on time. The enthusiasm of his family and team Adorna was so much that they always challenged him to make them stretch their working hours by getting more orders. The more the stretch, greater were the celebrations!
As with every business, the problems in inventory management were getting intense. On one hand, he couldn’t block huge cash in inventory, while in e-commerce he couldn’t afford stockouts and needed to ship the orders within 24 hours. This is when his then MBA professor, Joseph Hopper (currently Senior Director, ISB Hyderabad), offered to teach him the Dynamic Buffer Management concept for efficient inventory management from Dr. Goldratt’s Theory of Constraints. Little did they know that Joseph would end up coaching Ashish for years to come and play a pivotal role in making Adorna the success story it is today!
Since the start, Adorna’s focus has been on the quality of products and services. With his innovative and problem-solving mindset, from the start, he was focused on resolving the major issues faced by shapewear users. One such problem was the rolling down of Tummy Tuckers which his team helped him fix within 6 months of launch. Eventually, in 6 years of its existence, team Adorna fixed several major issues like panties with openable crotch, launched first of a kind Shapewear Leggings which took out shapewear from the innerwear closet and placed them into outerwear collections, etc.. Such focus on quality and innovation has helped them take the business to reach the status of Category Best Sellers on Amazon. The reviews on major marketplaces are a testimony and reward of their focus on delighting their customers.
As with all of us, he was also frustrated with the so-called customer service of some of the businesses he interacted with. So, he made it a point that none of Adorna’s customers should ever face such issues. For this, they rebranded the “Customer Support” to “Customer Delight” within their business and have always boldly conveyed that they would leave no stone unturned to delight their customers.
While the business was showing impressive growth year on year, Covid lockdowns posed a setback. Though their highest priority remained the safety and well-being of staff, there was a time when Ashish was really worried about the sustainability of the business. With all outings limited, the demand for shapewear would vanish, and expecting the same levels of business post covid didn’t seem practical.
But to his pleasant surprise, Adorna made record sales in the Q4 of 2020-21. More than the business, it brought back team’s morale and filled them with great positive energy. With the record vaccinations and a hope of next wave getting deferred for good, the entire team Adorna is again looking forward to the stretched working hours!
If you are looking for the best quality shapewear, don’t miss exploring their widest collection at www.MyAdorna.com. You can also connect with them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn on handle @MyAdorna