In Goa since 1981, Suresh Narang is completely blended into Goan culture. Yet his Sindhi roots are strong and makes him a hardcore businessman.
Over the years his various ventures have only grown. Narang was only 21 years when he came to Goa and since then has never looked back.
Name: Suresh Narang
Name of company: Sunny’s Stationery World, Sunworld Sports
Product manufactured, packaged or traded or service: Stationery, Sports, Home Appliances, Clothing
Why did you opt to start a business in Goa?
About 38 years back my uncle and mentor Gobindram Narang started a unit, Poonam Cosmetics in Margao Industrial Estate. For 18 long years I worked with him. After his demise I became the sole proprietor of the company and ran it with the support of my wife Lovina Narang. Later on due to ill health I was forced to give up manufacturing and started trading. Our first store Sunny’s Stationery World in Aquem, Margao started in 1998. It has now grown into three more stores in Vasco and two stores in Porvorim. We are now looking for further expansion in Panaji, Mapusa and Ponda.
Your toughest task in setting up
Back in the day the business environment was different. It wouldn’t be right to compare two different eras. Today everything is dynamic. The product life, cycle, technology innovation, market demographics are something one should analyze carefully as business is become rapid and dynamic. For success you need to get a grip of things and know the pulse of the market. What seems good today might be obsolete in the days to come.
Have you achieved all your goals? If not what remains to be done?
Not yet. But at this age my motivation is changed. Money does not drive me as much as before. My sons have taken over the core businesses and I believe that to live a happy life one must have the drive to do something great every single day. I had lot of challenging and tough periods as well as happy and successful periods in my life. I am still optimistic and eagerly waiting for the best and the toughest moment to come. As they say nowadays – The Josh is high.
Your best business moment.
Quite a few commercially but the best would be last year when we purchased premises in every city of Goa.
Most difficult period. How did you overcome it?
The toughest period is when my uncle passed away and since my father had already expired the entire responsibility of the family fell on my shoulders. How did I overcome it? With support from my wife and family. My wife who is a post graduate in commerce revealed tremendous skill in running a business. She always stood by me both in personal and professional life. Her contribution made me overcome all the difficulties.
How did you settle down and merge into the Goan lifestyle?
Rather than telling how did I merge, I would like to thank Goa and Goans for making me and my community what we are today in the state. Without their help and kind hearted support things would not be the same. So now it is our duty today to give back to the state and its beautiful people. My motto today is to provide employment to Goan youth and also support local entrepreneurs. Most of the people from the Sindhi community in Goa are doing very well not only due to hard work and determination but because of the support of local Goans.
Customs or festivals that appeal to you.
I have always enjoyed watching theatre and tiatrs. Goa has many beautiful Ravindra Bhavan’s and the Kala Academy. I enjoy attending events in these academies. Having two sons and both with diverse friend circle exposes us to every festival of the state. We cherish all the local festivals.
State one aspect of Goa which has changed for better or worse?
In the last 15 years commercial property prices have shot up tremendously, which although good for property investors is now too high. Doing any business is just not viable because of the property cost. This kills the prospects for young entrepreneurs and also lot of big ticket retail projects don’t come to the state easily. Retail spaces in some parts of Goa are equivalent to prime commercial spaces in metro cities. Critics might say that the GDP here is higher but I can assure you, the quantum of business is not even close for any businessman to pay such a hefty price for the premises.
What changes would you like to see in the business as well as
One change not only for Goa but for entire India is, parents must start to understand that it is more sensible to take up vocational and polytechnic courses rather than specialized courses for job prospects. Make in India is likely to increase the demand for skilled labour. Vocational and polytechnic degree holders might get jobs faster than someone with a specialized degree.
If not a businessman, what would you have chosen as a profession? Why?
I would always prefer business as we are born entrepreneurs and business is in our blood.
Your definition of susegado.
Susegado according to me is, do it but don’t gloat about it. It is exactly how Goans are. The state has produced the best in many fields from architects to sportsmen, engineers, doctors and businessmen. People already know that the GDP and quality of life of Goa is among the best in India. Critics term Goan susegado as laz. But they need to be told that, in comparison with the size of population, the success stories of Goans is remarkable.