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SMB Stories :Ask your Excuses , if they are Big or You are ? - ANAMIKA SARAF

Updated: Jun 28, 2022

Do you think our dreams change over a period of time ? Do you think if certain situations weren’t a part of our lives wouldn’t have happened , we ourselves wouldn’t be the same ? Do you think the downfalls you saw in your life catapulted you to the iron made perseverance and power you carry through your soul ?

Meet the guest of SMB Stories by Designs Insiders , Mrs. Anamika S. Saraf.Born and brought up in the steel city of Bokaro,an average girl at class proving to be an icon of resilience and a go-getter’s spirit, an experienced marketer with entrepreneurial blood through her veins , starting an Export Company single -handedly , running a creative business she always yearned for. But was the journey smooth ?

The eldest in the family , sandwiched between as aspiring mindset of getting a job since her childhood and the responsibility of home as an adult girl-child, she fought for pursuing her higher studies. Conservative as our society has always been , she was pulled back to study in the city and pursue her higher studies from home. A government school learned , Anamika made her first move to Masters in Arts from Ranvijay College , Bokaro , Jharkhand. As destiny & probably the universe would have it , she manifested her sudden placements with ICICI back at home , just before the final exams of MA , in her previous college where she graduated from ; VBU, Hazaribagh.

They say , people who know what they want , get somewhere near to what they always wanted! The summer of 2007 changed her life as she landed her first Job , out of quiet literally 8 rigourous hours of 3 rounds of interview & came back gleaming with pride & happiness in her eyes ,never seen before. The next destination being ISM&M Kolkata where she put her first foot forward again for PGPM&I to pursue MBA & then in her 1st ‘Job’ & then shifting to the city of dreams : Mumbai , post marriage.

The job life continued alongside the responsibilities came along with it. The job-life took a hault , the family life started.Along came her creative strides into play . As her designer sister interned from Mumbai , the sister-duo curated and sourced fabrics from streets of Mumbai , planned their own production set-up and started their little venture into clothing line. The creative pursuit parted souls as the two sisters parted with life’s own ways.The dreams laid unfed.

She made a come-back to ICICI prudential Life Insurance in 2014 ones again. This time with more enthusiasm & more responsibilities.

‘Daunting eyes !’ she was always complimented .And in a heart wrenching incident , one of those were gone !

One incident can entirely put your existence from heavens to hell. It happened gradually, in front of everyone , but she was in Coma back in 2016. Parents rushed as they heard of the incident , her mother almost cried ,she is no more! A slow case of dengue , a common disease all across Mumbai ,put her through high temperatures. The fever didn’t recede , but a tiny dot of blood sparked in one of her eyes. She was rushed immediately to Fortis , Vashi as her husband ran frantically in the hospital to get her admitted. Next couple of days were critical , no one knew what was happening. And she laid unconscious as her little child of 6 ,watched the frantic circus of destiny play it’s nightmare.

The blood dot turned into bloodshed from her eye, making everyone in the family’s gut wrench out ; praying & sobbing didn’t stop. Breathing continued. Conciousness died.She laid bedridden for almost a week , only thankful for being alive this time ! She childlike-insisted her husband, whom she admires as one of the strongest pillars of life , to take her home as soon as she woke up only to be taken to Shankar Netralaya, Chennai as she was just alright on her foot. There was no turning back from the truth . Her left eye had to be removed.The latent eye sits back as the stone coloured replaced it.No science could save the damage .

Shock waves blew her out mentally & physically exhausted her body . It took years to make an understanding with the reality, making her completely shy away from anyone meeting her, seeing her & showing sympathy each time they met. She felt adversity mocking her face but the tremendous support of her husband Mr. Sameer Saraf , parents , her siblings Anup & Renu & her friends Pooja & Soni that she was back in action ones again, mentally & physically.

What could an Iron-soul do if not stand up straight!

3 months post the incident , she was back to her job.Her sister , she remembers proved to be biggest help. ‘she juggled maintaining both of hers and mine office timings, picking me up & dropping me each day , as I couldn’t even cross a road by myself then’ , cherishing the fact that her family who ones stopped her from going out in the world became her driving force in making a comeback to her world.

Entrepreneurial Journey

A women is tied up with hundreds of responsibilities. The responsibility of both her kids alongside maintaining the lifestyle in Mumbai , forced her to resort to her own business as an Export House in the year 2020. Through the roller coaster ride of Covid as we all went through , the company strided through trading Tapes to Covid Essentials, only to making a way to survival in the City of Dreams.

As any business person would have it , she took a step back to re-assess. International market & exports became her forte . What she didn’t really jelled with was her product line. A brainstorming session with a Designer at her home , she figured out her long -lost love , the love for Fabrics & the yearn for having a sister-duo Bridal label , 10 years ago . Yeah ! She strided back in action in no time and dived back with force and ambition in hand with her new label RIWAYAT Avenue , a Designer Bridal Label for International Market & Exports.

“ Knowing exactly what you want is a bliss ! If it was not for the Brainstorming session that my sister would have made me go through , I could not have decided on the Product Range I had to work , the Market I had to cater and Mindmap to the goal I am heading too” , says Mrs. Saraf , who now runs an Export Business with Handmade Jewellery where she enjoys feeding her entrepreneurial mindset with her love for making something new each day as her creative juices flows through her business. Taking pride in being a part of the initiative for training , promoting and helping small businesses by Designs Insiders , the journey of this women entrepreneur begins ones again .. !


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