Mr. Shabbir has enlightened us with his humble story which is worth to be read.. They are the leading Distributors in Tamil Nadu and always on top list of all Auto Aftermarket brands in the country.
With NO Experience in the Automotive Industry , Mr Shabbir has been a strong player in the Auto Industry since 20 Years.
In a recent interview with Mr. Ravdeep Singh Chadha (Editor-In-Chief of Auto Insider) , Mr. Shabbir talked about his Story and how he served the Auto Industry and what the Industry has given him.
Ravdeep: When did you start this business?
Shabbir: I started this business in 2000, this business is like my own baby. From 1984-2000 I was working with one of my family friends.
As my family condition was not good so I dropped out of my schooling in 1984 and started working with him and I learned basic Business tricks from him.
It was a small business, but yes there were many things to learn. At that time, I decided that I will start my own business rather than working in any other job.
In 1995, I got married and then I had a baby, so the salary was not enough for my family survival.
My uncle was having a business of threads, I used to purchase products from Sadar Bazar Delhi. I had a total of 16 years of experience in this business but I started a totally different business “automobile accessories”.
At that time there was a Monopoly of the wholesalers in the market so I thought of doing retail. I started buying products from the Delhi wholesale market and then started retailing in Chennai.
Today I have a total of 25 staff and the whole Tamilnadu is covered by me and I have 350 dealers network in which 150 are highly active.
Ravdeep: What were the high points and low points in your life?
Shabbir: As I told you from 1984 to 2000 I used to work with my uncle and my salary was very low. At that time my family was not in a good condition so that was my low point.
After 2000 when I started this business till now (pre-COVID) everything was going great.
Ravdeep: Name 3 people who inspire you in your life?
Shabbir: The first one to the list is my ex- Boss my uncle, I learned honesty from him. He taught me how to do business with a small capita and with honesty.
The second one is my brother-in-law. He has had his business in auto linings since 1960s. He was having the knowledge and the accessories were not so popular at that time, so he helped me to establish this business.
Last but not the least, my family supported me in each and every condition.
Ravdeep: Tell us one good thing and one bad thing about you?
Shabbir: The Good thing is that I get referred by many old customers and I have a good rating in the market.
One bad thing, I must say that I am a bit short-tempered when I see people cheating on me. for example, I am extraordinarily honest and that is not good for me sometimes. As people try to take advantage of my honesty and at that time it makes me so angry and I am very much straight forward too.
Ravdeep: What makes you so energetic?
Shabbir: My Positive thinking towards my work and my employees, I think it makes me energetic towards my work.
Ravdeep: How do you manage your personal and professional life?
Shabbir: According to me a businessman is never on leave. My family complains that I keep working at home also and every time in my mind I am thinking of my business.
I try to avoid business calls at home but it is a bit difficult for me.
Ravdeep: What is your suggestion to the new age entrepreneurs?
Shabbir: My only suggestion is “don’t lose hope.” Be patient for your time and be honest in your business this will take you a long way. Always have value for your money and do not work for your needs only, do it passionately.
And most importantly, one should know about accounting. This will help you out to manage your money and nobody else would be able to fool you around.
” Start Small Think Big”
About the Company
Ravdeep: Tell us what all products and services you are dealing with?
Shabbir: I am dealing with all kinds of car accessories. My principle brand is Galio, very much famous for car accessories in the market. I am also having all the other leading brands in Car accessories. We do not switch our brands, we have a very good relationship with all the brands we have.
Ravdeep: from how many years you are into this business?
Shabbir: I am into this business for the last 20 years but I have a total of 35 years of business experience.
Ravdeep: How many employees are working under your company and how many customers do you have right now?
Shabbir: Currently I am having 24 employees. My younger brother also helps him with the business. I am having a 300 strong dealer network.
Ravdeep: what is the vision of your company in the coming period?
Shabbir:- I hope to work for the next 10 more years. Currently, we are in an assessment position and this is the time to understand where we are lacking. Once we cope with all these issues then there are a lot of opportunities in our industry.
About the Industry
Ravdeep: what was your experience pre-lockdown and post lockdown?
Shabbir: During the lockdown, we were thinking that every business will go into losses and maybe few get shut down. But one day, I got a thought that the money is revolving inside the country only. For example, if a doctor or a Kirana store are earning more during the lockdown period, once everything gets settled down they will definitely come into the market to revolve that money then we will be having good business. They would be having money to spend and the market will grow automatically.
Ravdeep: What are your views on the rising competition from the other brands which you are not dealing with and Chinese products?
Shabbir: According to me Chinese products will not affect my business as for example if a car is manufactured in India only Indian companies will be able to manufacture accessories for those cars, China will not be able to do so. Each and every product is available in India.
Ravdeep: As you know there is a slowdown in the sales of cars due to BS4. Do you think that this will affect your business also?
Shabbir: Yes, it will affect in the beginning, but by the time everything will get settled down. Changes are necessary and we should accept it open-armed.
Ravdeep: As you know the electric vehicles would be coming very soon the impact of the same to the car accessory business?
Shabbir: Electric vehicles are in a very initial stage, so currently we can’t predict what will happen. It will not affect the accessories business a much, as the outer decoration is always required. Only the internal engine and fueling system are changed, otherwise the outer body needs what other normal cars need. The manufacturing companies will definitely come up with something new for it.
Ravdeep: What is your suggestion to other distributors and dealers in the same industry to cope up with the COVID period?
Shabbir: My only suggestion is to don’t lose hope. Everything will settle down as the market will definitely rise, It’s just a matter of time.
Ravdeep: What vision do you see in the next 3-5 years?
Shabbir: If Electric vehicles are coming up in India on time as per government proposal, I will look closely to increase my knowledge for the same and build my stock as per the requirement of Electric Vehicles.
Ravdeep: What is the big opportunity you see in the business?
Shabbir: According to me the big opportunity is the entrepreneurs, as they will have to do multitasking roles. Entrepreneurs will come up with new ideas to increase the business with better customer services.16