Kadek Antari, Unique Paintings Produce Rich Fruit

Monday, 17 December 2012
Thanks to her artistic talent and her parents’ encouragement to always be useful to others, Kadek Antari decided to take the plunge into entrepreneurship. A 2010 national finalist in the Mandiri Young Entrepreneur Awards in the bachelor’s degree and diploma (industry) category, Antari started to think about how to produce unique and attractive artworks that could be worn everyday by people, and came to the conclusion that painted shoes were the answer. And so, armed with only Rp 1.5 million in capital, she started up her Gurita Shoes Painting business.

“I started out back in 2009, when I used my start-up capital to the buy paint and the equipment I needed. I then invited my friends from the Art Department to draw concept designs that I could use on shoes as the media. In addition, we also took orders for painted shoes using designs suggested by customers,” explained Antari.

Antari acknowledged that at first her marketing technique was very simple – wearing her creations herself to college. Unexpectedly, the response she got was very positive, and many of her college friends placed orders for the homemade painted shoes. This encouraged Antari to work even harder at her business as it made money for her, which allowed her to help out her family financially.

Antari then decided to open a showroom. “I had Rp 5 million in capital, including the rent. In addition, to reduce the cost, I started bringing the shoes directly from where they were made in Bogor,” she explained. Turnover slowly rose until by the end of 2010 she had sold 50-60 pairs of shoes at prices ranging from Rp 130 thousand to Rp 160 thousand per pair.

Painted Fabrics
Not content to rest on her laurels, in late 2010 Antari decided to spread her wings to Balinese painted woven fabrics. However, she still had to learn about styles and motifs, and so only started selling products in early 2012. With the growth of her business, she now no longer relies on designs prepared by artistic friends, but rather has six Balinese artists working for her full time.

For the distribution of her products, Antari currently works with a Balinese Cooperative, and resellers whom she met at exhibitions. “For Indonesia, I want to focus on Jakarta. I already have some resellers of our Balinese weaves there. Nevertheless, there may other resellers interested in selling our products. Next year I also want to move into the U.S. market by collaborating with some friends who are exporters,” Antari explained.

Also next year, Antari has decided to focus on her Balinese woven fabrics business, while from then on her painted shoes will only be made to order. The reason for this is that Balinese woven fabrics are easier to make and enjoy a wider market. “Those who like woven fabrics are more numerous and widespread, especially among the ladies. As we all know, ladies love shopping more than school and college students. By focusing on them, my profits will be bigger,” she explained.

Her success is now obvious, and she is able to sell some 100 pieces of Balinese woven fabric per month at prices ranging between Rp 250 thousand and Rp 350 thousand. Next year, Antari hopes to sell up to 200 pieces of fabric per month. She says that her advantages are handmade products that are natural, unique and of high artistic value. No less important, to date Antari is the only person making such products.

According to Antari, the successful development of her business really started with her participation in the Mandiri Young Entrepreneur program. The help she has received from Bank Mandiri in the form of training, publication and sponsorship for participation in exhibitions has been very beneficial for the growth of her business, she says.

“The environment was also very supportive, so as to form the right mindset that ultimately motivated me to move forward, to develop myself and to not give up when the going got tough,” she explained.

Source : Kontan Tabloid