In Conversation with Chkokko Founder Alisha Sabharwal

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CHKOKKO, was founded in a tiny factory stacked with killer vintage, a single laptop and an eBay account. CHKOKKO being a very catchy name inhales creativity and exhales products. Chkokko.com is global online store that offers thousands of products online. The mastermind behind this brand is Alisha Sabharwal. In conversation with this entrepreneur and influencer:

Alisha, for those who aren’t aware of your journey, could you please tell them briefly about your journey?

My journey has been a fun ride. I did my Bachelors in Accounts followed by a diploma in Computers and higher education in Journalism. So, I was a total media person and was known as a fashionista in TOI. I used to cover matches in Mohali, and at home, I used to design my own clothes or help myself in shopping. (Haha). Never knew that this would turn into an actual lucrative business. 

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What made you give up your job and start an online business?

My job was awesome and super chilled but I was not happy doing that. I was not able to give quality time to my own passion which is fashion. So I thought of leaving my job and start something related to fashion.

Can you tell us a little bit about Chkokko? Where did this name come from?

Chkokko is a catchy name, difficult to pronounce. It was a deliberate decision so that no one forgets this name. It is a mixture of numerology. 

You are also an influencer, how did that journey begin?

In 2016, I had the opportunity to attend the London Fashion Week. Since then I have been posting my different styles on Instagram. People adored all these looks and wanted me to continue, so that inspired me a lot.

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How do you manage your personal brand and Chkokko?

One needs to put in their 100 percent when he/she starts a venture, like from scratch. It took us a lot of patience and hard work and struggle, of course. Once it sailed, I started multitasking, whenever I used to get time I used to click pictures and post, approached other brands and started working with them. With time it became a hit and I am still rolling it somehow!

For someone who is just starting any business, what advice would you give them?

The key is to know your audience, your product or know where and how much to invest. Research is of the utmost importance. And obviously, whatever you do do with all your heart and give it all that you have.

Do you think it is important to have some funding when starting? Or can you fund your business through your initial investment itself?

Honestly, it totally depends on what kind of business you are looking for. Some require investments which can be loaned and some require personal investment which, in return, if worked hard gives profit. That is why I said to know where and how much to invest in the previous question. 

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What are some important tips to keep in mind when starting an online business?

E-commerce is a combination of many things coming together and few things which are at the top of my head are: finding the right product, the right market for your products and of course, managing resources and inventory. Also, customer support should be the priority and accounts. 

Can you share your best and the worst experiences in this line of business?

The worst is, perhaps, when someone gives you rejection. At one point of time you feel you have worked so hard, how much more effort is required to reach that level. But only such experiences take you the other level. It helps to grow and yes, without the criticism and rejections nobody can grow. We learnt from rejections. And the best is since 2018, we are getting excellence awards from Amazon and Flipkart. 

Where do you see yourself in the next 2-3 years? What next?

Well, the future is uncertain but a businesswoman can not be. (Laughs) So I guess we will plan an offline store and expansion is another thing that I am looking forward to. Let us wait and watch. 

You can check out Chkokko website here.

-Mrinaal Datt
Read more about me here.
Follow me on Instagram here.

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