Sept 23, (Business Standard): Students at XLRI Jamshedpur have formed a venture to link tribal artisans and rural craftsmen with the mainstream market, to increase margins.
Six XLRI students have set up a ‘design and learning centre’ for development of contemporary products using ancient art and craft. The centre will act as a learning centre for the rural and tribal craftsmen. The craftsmen will be encouraged to produce superior quality products. Two professionals designers have been hired for the purpose.
The incubation fund of Rs 3 lakh has been provided by the the XLRI Alumni Association, Jamshedpur chapter, through XLRI Social Entrepreneurship Trust. The venture has now been converted into a legal partnership firm.
XLRI Jamshedpur supported a group of six first-year students to start Parichay.co.in, a portal to link tribal artisans with the mainstream market and provide them a platform to reach out to connoisseurs of art across the world. “We at XLRI thought of supporting them with the initial funds required to put the project in place,” reasoned Madhukar Shukla, XLRI faculty.
“We are planning to take Parichay beyond Jamshedpur. The plan is to set up such design and learning centres in multiple locations to tap the potential everywhere. The approximate requirement for the expansion is about Rs 90 lakh,” another team member said.
The Parichay team is designing design prototypes for the product line. The team is also planning exhibitions of the product range at various platforms like Ishanya Mall, a specialised mall in Pune for home and office décor, and at Dastkar, a society for crafts and craftsmen that aims to improve the economic status of craftspeople.