Fanzart: a Theme Group company, is a high-end luxury designer fan

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Science and technology have redefined the way we live.

There was a time when humanity was doomed to a monotonous way of life. Life expectancy wasn’t that great. We did not understand the causes of disease, drought or famine. The economy was a zero-sum game. Meaning, the thought that one couldn’t be better off in terms of possessions unless he or she has taken it from someone else. Static thinking was all the rage in the eras gone by. Wars have been raged over religion, social and political issues for centuries.

But something changed. Without going into the details of the exact conditions that prevailed all over the world; beginning from the late fifteenth century, humanity began to open up. An age of exploration ensued. We collected more information. Coupled with the printing press, the enlightenment age was born where individuals began to ascribe causes to natural phenomena. Say the idea, that disease was caused by microscopic bacteria or germs, a discovery brought upon by the invention of the microscope. The modern era was born and on came the might of the industrial revolution.

As we begin the third decade of the second millennium, science and reason still hold so much potential to do more good. More than anything, it is a mindset. A mindset of always seeking to know and understand more. This mindset has proliferated every industry, from consumer goods and durables to enterprise software.

Today, at Bangalore Insider, we speak to Mr. Tarun Lala, a second-generation entrepreneur who told us about how he wanted to use innovation to spark an otherwise relatively bland, untapped, category – the ever-present fan.

 

Give a brief Info about your startup?

Fanzart, a Theme Group company, is a high-end luxury designer fan brand that has evolved the ceiling fan in terms of design, functionality as well as aesthetics. These fans not only serve the purpose of breeze and air- circulation, but also beautify the space, by adding elements of grace, elegance and grandeur!

For a country where a fan is still an essential element in homes, they weren’t that evolved in terms of design and technology. This inspired us to redefine luxury and technology and take décor a notch higher.

Today our products represent a brilliant amalgamation of design, technology, and luxury transformed into a fan.

We started with 1 Retail showroom (our flagship showroom, Indiranagar, Bangalore) in March 2012 and we now successfully have 63 experience centres across the country between our own, franchise partners and other types of partnerships.

 

What made you start your start-up and what problem does it solve?

We started as consumers. We looked out for ceiling fans that accentuated/contributed towards the interior decor. We couldn’t find any.

When it comes to fans, India had been very static in terms of innovation and technology. When we looked into the market, designer fans had a very little scope in India, so much so that fans did not even fall into décor or interior category or have any innovations of their own. For a country where a fan is still an essential element in homes, they weren’t that evolved in terms of design and technology. This inspired us to redefine luxury and technology and take décor a notch higher.

Today our products represent a brilliant amalgamation of design, technology, and luxury transformed into a fan.

 

Tell us about yourself, your previous jobs/ventures? What were you doing before this start-up?

 

Profile: Tarun Lala – Executive Director, Fanzart.

Mr. Tarun Lala, a second-generation entrepreneur has worn several hats during the little experience that he has in 10 years. From Software Engineering to Hardware to Technology Consulting to Consumer tech startups to the luxury brand Fanzart, Tarun exhibits his passion, to work and learn.

With a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the Northeastern University & Stanford GSB – Global Innovations Ignite program in Entrepreneurship, Tarun brings the first-hand experience of the international landscape to unexplored culture of designer fans in India. Tarun’s award list includes the Top Gun Award & MVP award at EMC Corporation along with the recognition for his first brand LEVO – an IIM- Bangalore incubatee. A part of his journey, Tarun has also set up the world’s first networking-dedicated Airport Lounge at Bangalore Airport.

At Fanzart, has been instrumental in advocating innovative marketing strategies and business restructuring as the building blocks to create a strong base for Fanzart even in the niche market. His relentless commitment towards work and consistent dedication to customer satisfaction has led Fanzart emerge as the premium luxury brand. For all the accomplishments that he knitted in his journey, Tarun upholds the Success Mantra: “Teamwork divides responsibilities and multiplies growth.”

The Co-founder of Fanzart and the Founder of Levo Labz – Tarun is a technologist by heart and loves to keep one hand on the pulse of technology. Further, he has spun-of an Interior Design related podcast – Interior Vibez as well as a Home automation brand.

Narrowing down to his hobbies, the multi-talented young man is a Movie aficionado and a Traveller. Encompassing the list of his hard work, achievements and skills, the man is inspired by his father Mr. Anil Lala’s dedication and continues to walk along with him. “Working with my father has developed a lot of my EQ and I firmly believe that his mantra of ETHICS and RELATIONSHIPS matter the most in anything in life.”
 

Where is your start-up based out of? Why do you think that is the best place for you?

Fanzart was started in the United States. We still have an office there and will start distributing in the US soon enough as well. We headquartered Fanzart in Bangalore, as Bangalore was home and the lowest hanging fruit in terms of our own network and infrastructure to do the Proof of Concept.

 

As a start-up founder, what are you paranoid about? What keeps you awake at night?

What next? 🙂

 

Who are your competitions and how are you better than them?

There are 2 types of Competition:

Store brands: Big furniture stores that import and display. They are decent products but those stores don’t have as much product know-how as their focus is all over the place. We are a product brand and our bread & butter is fans. So whether it is integration to Indian ceilings, having better quality products or introducing newer designs time-and-again, finding specific use case fans, and other. We are just a lot better at what we do. (We have 100 fan models, 45 of them are with BLDC motors and 40 of them come with our unique Summer-Winter feature)

Conventional fan brands: The Indian fan giants that have started to bring in designer fans into their portfolios. However, their pricing, designs and channel to market service a lower end of the branding pyramid. Our ideal customers fall in the upper Premium and Luxury categories.

How hard is it to have a work-life balance as a start-up founder and how do you manage it?

I think every company goes through phases. There are phases where you just put work doesn’t allow you to do other things. But other phases are better. I’m always late to personal events, prioritizing work first and I skip many events, especially weddings. But no complains. 🙂

 

Have you raised funding? If yes, then we would like to know the details. If no then please tell us if you are looking to raise.

We are currently bootstrapped and we are in no hurry to raise. We would like to raise at some point, but we would look to have a tie up that would be more strategic than just the $. 🙂

 

What’s the biggest misconception people have about you? Why do they have that? What’s the reality?

 

Our fans are very expensive.

While we are expensive compared to the conventional competitors. However, if you look at a Rs. 20,000 fan today. The fact that it lasts you 25 years, even a math of 20 years will make it Rs. 500 per year. IF we look at 1. Our spending and 2. Other products in the market, that is a very inexpensive price. We are also in an industry where luxury rugs are selling at Rs. 5 lakhs per rug.

 

Air delivery in fans:

There was a time where the way to achieve more is by going faster. That is not true. While RPM is important, the blade pitch is more important. Our blade is angled 3-4 times of conventional fans. We also have fans that work differently, we have fans that go up to 400 RPM, 52-inch blade fans that go up to 315 RPM and fans that are only 180 RPM but they displace 14,200 CFM of air.

 

Reference point:

What gets you excited about this company?

A bunch of things. We have created the market for Designer Fans in India. We are also amidst a fan revolution. A one similar to the LED revolution. We also seem to innovate and surprise ourselves constantly. We have some very exciting news coming in January.

Being a startup, and a luxury brand at that one is special. The challenges are real, and the innovation that we bring about is unexpectedly cool. The celebrities we can boast about as clients. As your own baby, it’s hard to pick one thing. But having pioneered this space, it’s fun to see reactions of people, who may have never

singled-out a product such as a fan, learn so much about how this product has been redefined.

 

Tell us how a day in your life looks like? Your schedule for a day right from the time you get up till you hit the bed at night.

I start with my calls at 8am and work from home till about 11am, sometimes 12pm. I am in the office till about 7 or 8pm and then hit the gym. Sometimes I go to the retail showroom till about 8:30/9pm. And then home, dinner, work some more, Neflix and sleep at about 2am! 🙂

 

Tell us about your team and how did you meet each other?

Fanzart is a family venture. On the leadership team, we have my dad, Anil Lala, the founder & director of Fanzart. He is a first-generation entrepreneur with decades of experience and diversified vision which helped built Fanzart the topmost emblem of the luxury fan brand market in India. He comes from the manufacturing background and the fact that we have such a range of premium products is all credited to him. He has also been a very influential force in terms of tie-ups that Fanzart has accomplished with big manufacturers over the world.

My mom, Sangeeta Lala is the President, Retail at Fanzart and has a stalwart background in hospitality with experience in Taj and Oberoi groups. She has been a monumental figure in Building relations and coalitions for Fanzart and what’s amusing and admirable is her natural capability to navigate through retail and sales while being a gregarious person.

The rest of the team basically falls in 2 buckets, the back end, led by my Dad – Product, logistics, Technical, Finance. Most of these folks have been with my Dad for 20-30 years. The front end, led by me – Design, Business Development, Sales, and Franchising consist of fresh and new talent that we have hired over the last few years.

 

 

Know a great startup story or want to share your own? Write to me at bhumikka.yaadav@bangaloreinsider.com and I will get back to you. For more updates follow Bangalore Insider on Facebook and Instagram.

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