Had Nothing Left After Charity, Built A Rs 450 Crore Company Starting With Just Re 1
If someone tells you that one of the well-known companies of our era, which now has a net worth of Rs 450 crores, once began with only Re 1 capital, you might not believe it at all. But this amazing transformation was achieved in reality by Ramesh Agarwal, a former member of the Indian Air Force. Agarwal is the founder of the most renowned courier company in the country – Agarwal Packers and Movers. After his retirement in the year 1987, Agarwal started the company with just Re 1 and eventually turned it into a Rs 450 crore company. His journey is truly fascinating.
When Agarwal left the Indian Air Force in 1987, he only had Re 1 in his pocket. He had donated all his property to the poor and needy. After leaving his job, he wanted to start his own business. He shared this idea with his friend Subhash Gupta, but the biggest challenge was to arrange the capital. How can any business start from absolutely zero! In such a situation, Gupta advised him to start a packers and movers company.
Then, in a small office in Secunderabad, Agarwal Packers and Movers was born. Ramesh initially had to face a lot of difficulties in paying the rent of that small room. However, having worked in the air force, where he had seen frequent transfer orders, Ramesh was well-aware of the difficulties one had to face while shifting from one place to another in a country like India. His first challenge was to find a suitable solution to this age old problem. Agrawal Packers and Movers kick-started its venture by working for Indian Air Force employees. The company used the same air force trucks for this purpose.
The company started getting work within the Air Force community, but it needed some money for its expansion. The company needed at least Rs 4,000 for its initial expansion. This amount at that time was not a nominal sum and Agarwal’s friend Vijay and his mother offered timely help. In return, Ramesh made Vijay a co-founder of the project.
Ramesh explains that all his initial capital was exhausted before the first four assignments. He earned a profit of Rs 8,000 from this four assignments, by which he returned Rs 4,000 to Vijay’s mother and spent the remaining amount to run the office.
While running Agarwal Packers and Movers, Ramesh faced new challenges and difficulties at initial phases. Ramesh not only had to run his company smoothly, but also had to think of doing things better than his competitors in the market.
Ramesh believes that to be successful in business one need to satisfy its customers first rather than thinking of attracting them with appealing advertisements. Providing high-quality services should be the primary goal of any company. If you are successful in satisfying the customer with your service, then your company will prosper automatically.
Ramesh decided to keep the sentiments of the customers in mind while transferring goods from one place to another. His company tried to transfer every bit of things to the new place, however less important it may seemed. He believes that with the luggage, every person also transmits his/her memories, and emotions associated with it. Someone may have a 30-year-old radio which is useless and worthless, but it may still very precious to its owner. It may belong to his/her grandfather or father. “So we made sure that every item is packed with the same care it given to other precious goods.”
With the help of GE Capital in 1993, Agarwal Packers and Movers bought heavy trucks and started their services at the national level. Then they made several new initiatives to facilitate good quality services. With the help of one of his friends in 1994, he started to install steel containers inside the trucks, which proved to be a very good step for this logistic business.
Once the company took 18 hours to pack 2,000 boxes because of limited manpower. Today, the company has an army of people working for it. Starting with a small team of 10 people, the company now has become a leading brand in the country. The annual turnover of the company has reached Rs 450 crore.
Behind every successful venture there is a heart warming tale of hard work, determination and self-belief. The life and entrepreneurial journey of Ramesh Agarwal is a true inspiration to the younger generation.