Gaining with Grains

Starting out as an ‘intrapreneur,’ Pradeep Fatarpekar’s Golden Grains is growing fast

Entrepreneurship starts with a small idea that eventually develops into something big over time. For some, startups are the way to solve real life problems while many of them give society what it requires. Most entrepreneurs usually start their business after gaining a strong work experience in their chosen segment.

Pradeep Fatarpekar, a former employee of Magsons Group was in-charge of the food grains wing in their respective stores spread around the state. His reputation as a hard working employee and a supervisor earned him an undeniable offer from his former boss Kirit Maganlal of Magsons. Fatarpekar was awarded the contract of independently operating the food grains supplies and further serve as a vendor to Magsons.

(Top) Cereals produced by Golden Grains; (Right) Employees at the sorting unit

Fatarpekar started the manufacturing under the Magsons banner but eventually established Golden Grains in November 2010 in Corlim (Tiswadi). The new entity was supplying to Magsons in the initial stages. However, soon it found shelf spaces in other supermarkets across Goa.

Golden Grains deals in all types of cereals and pulses for local markets on wholesale rates. Fatarpekar says, “I worked with Magsons for a long time; and then one day my boss gave me an offer to do what I did as an employee, independently. In the beginning, we supplied our products exclusively to Magsons and under their brand name. Later, many other supermarkets approached us. It was then that we decided to brand as Golden Grains.”

Pradeep Fatarpekar heads several operations of the company. He says that he has received immense support from his wife, Sneha. She handles the day to day operations of the enterprise. Similarly, when it comes to marketing, his son Snehdeep is a hands-on help.

“Goa is actually a heaven on earth and we Goans are focussing on moving abroad for earnings due to which our market is totally dependent on outsiders. So why not try to earn our daily bread in our lovely state itself”    – Pradeep Fatarpekar

 

Although the sale of cereals and pulses has been going strong and expanding ever since they started business, Golden Grains also wishes to expand its product line with dry fruits and some other food items. Fatarpekar considers all kinds of dal by Golden Grains as their best seller. “Our sale is on the lower side during vacation time, as we mainly cater to customers who are non-Goans,” he adds.

Golden Grains products can be mainly found in shelves of supermarkets across Goa. Magsons sells the entire range of Golden Grains products. Apart from that, one can also find their products at Delfinos, mini marts in coastal areas and in other selected few stores. Golden Grains gets its raw materials from DIG Gadvi and in small quantity from Belgavi.

Pradeep Fatarpekar considers Kirit Maganlal, the owner of Magsons Supermarkets in Goa as his role model. “I got a lot of support from him in the beginning and it still continues, for which I am very thankful to him. It is because of him that I could enter into business on my own,” he says.

Catering to high end customers, Golden Grains has strict quality standards and that itself has been their consistent focus and challenge. Fatarpekar states, “We have maintained good quality ever since we started out.”

A positive customer feedback is the driving force for the team at Golden Grains. “We have been highly complimented on the quality of our products by retailers as well as our customers,” says Fatarpekar.

Speaking on the marketing front, he says, “As of now, we haven’t done any kind of promotions or advertisement. It is just our customers and well wishers who refer us to others, for which we are very thankful.”

Fatarpekar claims his workers are the backbone of his company and that he is totally dependent on them. “They are well aware of our strict product quality check and therefore we have been delivering healthy products to our customers. And that would always be more important to us than the productivity,” Fatarpekar adds. Goods and Service Tax Bill was supposed to simplify the tax process for small businesses, especially the food grain sector but it has left many like Pradeep Fatarpekar unhappy. Fatarpekar explains, “With the coming of GST, our workload has increased. In the previous tax regime, none of our products attracted any tax but now certain products come in the GST bracket, due to which we have to maintain records and hire a tax consultant.”

Golden Grains’ personnel at the packaging unit

Pradeep Fatarpekar feels that Goans should be looking at the state for career prospects rather than looking outside. He says, “Goa is actually a heaven on earth and we Goans are focussing on moving abroad for earnings due to which our market is totally dependent on outsiders. So why not try to earn our daily bread in our lovely state itself.”

Similarly, Pradeep Fatarpekar has a clear cut vision for his brand Golden Grains. And that is to set a strong foothold in the Goan market itself rather than doing business outside the state. He feels that there is huge potential throughout the state for his products where they can capitalise big time.

“Our market is currently focused on North Goa and in the near future, we would set our footprints across cities in South Goa. We will also open another branch in Margao due to transportation factors. All that will be done steadily,” Pradeep added

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