Interview with Nikita Charusheela Ravindra Sawant | Founder at Charvi Environ

Nikita Charusheela Ravindra Sawant

It is our constant endeavour to identify and share some of the unique and compelling stories from the startup ecosystem. As part of this, we invited passionate women entrepreneur Nikita Charusheela Ravindra Sawant for an interview with BrilliantRead Media. She is the Founder of Charvi Environ. Let’s learn more about her background, her inspiring journey so far and advice for our growing community!

Excerpts from our exclusive interview with Nikita:

We are aware of your contribution to the ecosystem, talk us through your background and your journey as a women entrepreneur, please;

I did my schooling from Bharat Children’s Academy. I was a National Level Archery player and had the opportunity to be part of the renowned club Bowmen Of Bruntwood, England. I was also part of the Army Sports Institute, Pune took training for 3+ years.

Further pursue my Bachelors in Biotechnology from Modern College, Ganeshkhind, Pune followed by a Masters’s in Biotechnology, Vidya Pratishthan School of Biotechnology. I also did several Diploma courses in Biotechnology, Clinical research to dive deep into the Biotechnology and research domain. I qualified for the SET and GATE exams in my first attempt. During my bachelor’s, I  started exploring  Nanotechnology since 2010. I was amazed by its several applications.

I then kept exploring several projects in Nanotechnology till my Master’s. After my Master’s, I was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biotechnology and one of the Visiting faculties from Pune University was presenting his research and patents in textile coatings. He had these coatings which were chemical coatings. I was very curious about his work and I asked him “Why are these chemical coatings? Aren’t they harmful? Why are you not into green nanocoatings ?” He replied, “ If you feel it’s that easy, Why don’t you try coatings in green nanotechnology?” That triggered a curiosity within me.

I questioned myself  “Is it that difficult ?” “I don’t think that’s impossible?” Soon after that, I started working on these coatings and today we have a Provisional patent of these Green Nanocoatings which are sustainable, eco-friendly,skin-friendly and durable.

We at Charvi Environ Pvt Ltd manufacture these coatings on Home Textiles which are antibacterial, antifungal, insect and mosquito repellent and air purifying Home textiles. We, Charvi Environ Pvt Ltd is proudly incubated at NSRCEL, IIM Bangalore and InFED, Nagpur. Charvi Environ Pvt Ltd is also Startup India recognized.

What attracts you towards entrepreneurship instead of a corporate career?

I chose entrepreneurship because I always wanted to make an impact. I have always been intrigued by entrepreneurship and read success stories of all successful entrepreneurs.

You see – It’s fascinating how you build something from scratch to build an empire around it and not everyone can do it. It takes a lot of courage, planning, perseverance, hard work, and teamwork, combined with good strategy & execution skills.

Thanks to my mother, who is the Co-Founder of Charvi Environ Pvt Ltd who helped me and encouraged me to pursue my goals. Thanks to my mentor Dr Suhas Buddhe (CMD at BIOCARE INDIA PVT LTD) who gave me valuable input to make the journey a lot easier for me.

‘Charvi Environ’ is such a unique name; talk us through more about it, please. Our audience would also love to know what kind of problem you are solving?

“Charvi” is Charusheela and Ravindra, my Aie and Baba’s first names so it is “Charvi”. Charvi in Sanskrit means beautiful, splendour and lustre. Environ –as we deal in green, sustainable coatings which are eco-friendly, skin-friendly, natural and chemical-free.

What does your company specialize in? 

Charvi Environ Pvt Ltd under the brand name Hippoguard is a budding startup based out of Pune, incubated at NSRCEL, IIM Bangalore and InFED, Nagpur. Our mission is to improve the lives of mankind by adding functionalities to the fabric. 

Charvi Environ Pvt Ltd under the brand name Hippoguard deals into home textiles which are having specialized coatings which are antibacterial, antifungal, insect and mosquito repellent.

These coatings are sustainable, eco-friendly, skin-friendly, natural and chemical-free. We have provisional patents for these specialized coatings onto the textile.

During this COVID-19 crisis, what are the measures you have undertaken to continue your business without disruption?

Our business was born during COVID, all measures were taken into consideration to face the challenges of the pandemic.

~ Our business model consists of a small team which is not at all resource-heavy and has minimal overheads.

~ The freelancer model ensures each and every work can be handled remotely, where we don’t need to do physical meetings

~ Every aspect of the business is online and tech-enabled to ensure automation as much as possible.

How do you manage to keep going despite the challenges? What drives you?

Challenges help us grow, develop, change and learn. Being a sports person I love challenges and face them courageously. Challenges empower us with self-awareness, knowledge, respect, dignity and equality. Challenges help to achieve the goals in one or the other way but the set goal is never to be changed.

I believe consistent efforts put together help us grow and face the challenges in all aspects of life.

Nikita Sawant

What are the business mantras you have embraced as you sought to establish your success story?

Innovation, creation and research are the keys to opportunity. Opportunity help to grow. To get an opportunity, I focus on improving the lives of mankind by adding functionalities to textile as it covers our body next to the skin. 

Who do you believe has been the biggest source of motivation in your daily life? 

My biggest source of motivation is my mother, she is a warrior. She has taught me how to face challenges gracefully. She is Tigress. She is my biggest strength. She has been my support system.

Secondly, my beloved dogs Chintoo and Snow are my true friends and companion. Their unconditional love keeps me joyful, adventurous, smiling and warm.

Please share with us, what has worked well for you so far?

We are focused on team building and marketing. So far building a team is what the company has focused on. Social media reach and customer awareness and building knowledge in the customer community is the next thing that we focus on to.

This in turn has helped companies grow and understand customer needs and we focus on solving problems. More we listen to customers we understand their problems and efficiently and effectively we focus on solving them.

What are the three most important lessons you have learned while building your startup?

(a) Innovation, implementation and customer feedback. I believe being innovative helps you explore several niches in the market and not to compare to other brands helps you innovate and grow.

(b) Accepting and change help you build strategies to overcome obstacles.

(c) Understand customers, get their feedback and improvise. We focus on improvising the lives of customers.

What are some of the strategies that you believe have helped you grow as a person? 

There are a few:

> Persistent in acquiring knowledge

> Taking responsibility for my actions

> Risk-taking abilities

> Problem solving approach

In your opinion, what are the keys to success?

I will say it straight that there are many factors but if you really have to have the key elements then to me these are the ones:

(1) Positive Attitude

(2) Belief

(3) Standing up for myself

(4) Execution

(5) Curiosity and knowledge

(6) Persistence

(7) Self-love and acceptance

Given the rapid pace at which the world is changing, what are the leadership traits that are necessary for success? 

Be a leader and build an efficient team. Develop a work culture that helps the team grow in several aspects that in turn help the company to grow.

What advice would you give students and young professionals who want to have a successful career?

Knowledge is the key. Keep gaining knowledge and work on your skills. Be consistent with it. Keep updated. With full confidence be stubborn and attract and achieve the desired goals of your life.

Develop a winning mindset and work on it. Our brain is the centre of creation, feeding it with positivity and possibilities. Drive it crazily to achieve different milestones of life.

Enjoy your work and keep on updating yourself on it. Apply 3C’s Be Confident, Courageous and Curious.


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Please don’t forget to read – Interview with Kapil Mittal | Seasoned Entrepreneur | Leader | Chief Strategy Officer at Power Gummies

BrilliantRead is committed to bringing stories from the startup ecosystem, stories that reshape our perspective, add value to our community and be a constant source of motivation not just for our community but also for the whole ecosystem of entrepreneurs and aspiring individuals.
Note: If you have a similar story to share with our audience and would like to be featured on our online magazine, then please write to us at [email protected], we will review your story and extend an invitation to feature if it is worth publishing.
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