A dazzling world

With a wide variety of choices in gold and diamond jewellery, Shukra Jewelers strives to reach out to the masses with their high quality deliverance

By Ankitha Joseph

_99A3010One of the most renowned jewelers in the cultural capital of Ponda is Shukra Jewelers. The store has been functioning for over a decade now and is run by Damodar Raikar and his wife Shilpa.

      Since 1996, Damodar had worked with his father and brother and ran the established Raikar and Sons, a name known to all in and around the town. It was in the year 2004, that he felt the need to open his own store and hence led on to begin with the second store of Raikar and Sons. Within a few years, he decided to create his own brand name and renamed the store Shukra Jewelers. “Even though I had my own store, it was still functioning under the old name and it was something that I wasn’t completely convinced with.” And the year 2007 saw the evolution of a new brand, Goa’s very own, ‘Shukra’. Among the many names that were shortlisted, Shukra, bright in Sanskrit, stood out the most for its simplicity.

      Though Damodar had enough knowledge and experience from his previous store, going ahead with his own brand was no cake walk. As the saying goes, it’s all about the survival of the fittest. “It was all about surviving in the market as there were already a lot of established names in the market. And getting people to know of the existence of my brand was another challenge all together,” Damodar recollects.

      The sudden inception of a new brand was difficult for many to grasp. People were used to hearing the name Raikar and Sons and associating it with an age-old trust worthy name among goldsmiths. A sudden change in the brand name was a risky business proposition. “I wanted to create a unique brand name of my own and have something different than the name that had been running for ages,” asserts Damodar.

      Spread across a 70 sqmt area, Shukra jewelers makes available a variety of designs for all its customers. In most cases, the designs are shortlisted and chosen from Mumbai. The manufacturing of the final product is usually done in their own unit or in Mumbai.

      The store also has a diamond section that showcases a variety of designs to choose from. “We also deal with customized jewelry. Anything that the customer demands for, we make it available,” Damodar says with pride. He further adds, “If anyone is hesitant to finish an order, no worries, we make sure to get it done.” Other than the store, Shukra Jewelers also has its own manufacturing unit.

  _99A2997    Today, Shukra Jewelers have achieved immense success and appreciation for their high quality deliverance and Damodar owes it all to his team. “I am blessed with a team that stands synonymous to perfection for me. They are the most co-operative team anyone could ever have,” Damodar expresses. With a total team of 12 efficient persons with 5 at the store and 7 at the manufacturing unit, Shukra is yet to achieve the heights that they aspire for. Apart from his team, it’s also his family that has been by his side through thick and thin. “My wife and sons have given me the much required support to achieve all that I have today. My sister Sukanti has also played an important role in my success.” Besides them, it was his mother Late Shantabai Shabu Raikar who gave him the much needed encouragement to grow his business. While there were many playing the role of a support system for Damodar, there was one man who inspired him to go ahead and win the battle of entrepreneurship – Ramnath Lotlikar from Margao.

      Damodar assures that his business works on the principles of quality deliverance and transparency. According to Damodar, people put in a large amount of trust before buying from them and they are obliged to keep up to that trust.

Shukra jewelers makes available a variety of designs for all its customers. In most cases, the designs are shortlisted and chosen from Mumbai. The manufacturing of the final product is usually done in their own unit or in Mumbai. The store also has a diamond section that showcases a variety of designs to choose from

      Shukra Jewelers has also come forward with its own Shukra Yojana that helps people get closer to their dream of buying gold. “It’s a monthly scheme where every month the client can invest a certain amount of money, continuing the same for 12 months. The 13th month is taken care of by us and in the 14th month they can buy an item from the store of the total worth. We don’t pay back in any other form such as gold coins or cash.”

      In Damodar’s opinion, Goa, with its comparatively smaller population, doesn’t have the similar craze for gold like many other parts of the country. “Here people like to remain simple and stick to simpler designs of jewelry. And that’s also what we focus on.”

      Considering the growing number of jewelers across the State, Damodar hopes to reach out to the masses by soon expanding and setting up more stores across the State. Step by step, Damodar expects to reach out to the entire nation someday soon with his brand Shukra.

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