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From salesman to enterpreneur

By Michael Fisher | B&C

Instead of throwing a tantrum, Jaiprakash Sinai Kunde’s recent experience found that short bursts of intense stress can improve cognitive functions and make him more productive, even boosting his overall health.“When I think about the first 90 days on a job, I am thinking about how to steal days and gain time long before the next day begins. I realised that doesn’t make any sense! So I decided to spend time with customers and consumers, get to know one another better and determine how I can collaborate better and together,” he explains.

In this case, the emotional quotient of a salesman comes into play. One of the most important mantras for success is determining how to get more from less, says Kunde. Along with a family relative Subhas Dalal, they started a partnership firm supplying general goods. Kunde took a loan from his dad and purchased a second-hand Matador van from K D Naik for delivery. Both the partners purchased goods in bulk from wholesalers for distribution.

“We had been through hell, and many times we have experienced some major and several minor issues. Call me crazy, but I loved it because of how much I was learning. We ran the business for two years and finally decided to end the partnership as the turnover did not suffice. Although, the break-up of the business was in August 1987, it was that year and time the divine Lord opened a door. It was a real challenge for me to go it alone and my real business journey commenced.

Initially, I started as a one-man-company, being my own driver, a billing-clerk and delivering man from my matador van. When each day was done, in the evening I would load up the stock in the van ready for next day work. I established Salcete Marketing and took the first distributorship of Bambino Vermicelli, Silvania Laxman bulbs and tubes, and gradually as the consumer list grew, I went on adding new companies with their branded products. I start my day 8 a.m. in the morning and my first call would be 8.30 a.m. sharp. It would be anywhere in South Goa. I gradually became popular in South Goa and I attributed this achievement to the service, promptness and commitment,” recalls Kunde.

Then in 1994, Bambino Company had decided to appoint a Clearing and Forwarding Agent (F&A) for Goa. Since C&FA concept was not popular in Goa and the agent was not known, he was approached to cover South Goa for both CF&A and distribution.

“In this state of euphoria, I said I should not allow myself to be carried away, so instead I took control of my happiness and started to negotiate with marketing supervisors, distributors, dealers and customers. This gave me more leverage to increase my clientele list. I took this as a second phase of my business life. Then, in 1999 Medimix appointed me as their distributor and in 2000 their C&F agent. I was up for the challenge, but with too much on my shoulders, I gave up distribution of other products. I concentrated only on C&F and skewed towards super stockist. I gave the distribution division to my brother-in-law, who was then working for a private firm in Verna,” says Kunde.

As time went by Kunde gained popularity in the C&F business with many company approaching him for their C&F and super stocking deals.  As of now he is handling 10 major companies, and all their brands are doing well.

“Idea too as approached me for their distribution in some parts of Margao, and here too sales picked up and now Idea has asked to take over their marketing in the whole of Margao. On my pay roll I have 25 direct employees,” informs Kunde.

Kunde recalls his family background of a lower middle class. Seeing his father, Shrinivas Sinai Kunde, struggling to keep the family of three sons, two daughters and wife happy, Jaipraksh was determined to start a business after completing his B.Com in 1985. During his college days he would spend the spare time doing odd jobs or part time work.

“When I completed graduation, my father wanted me to work, but I was determined not to work for any employer. I finally got the opportunity I was waiting for and the rest his history,” Kunde says proudly.

Today, Kunde has set up three firms – Salcete Marketing, Kunde Associates and Prakash Kunde and Associates. He is connected with various social, religious and cultural associations and is an active member of Margao Cricket Club.

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