Meet Ashutosh Gujarathi: An Ex Merchant Navy Officer | Founder & MD Of Gujarathi Empire Group
Ashutosh Gujarati is the founder of the Gujarathi Empire Groups. He is also an Ex Merchant Navy Officer. He had managed responsibilities of trucking business of Pune after his father’s demise and gradually developed today as one of the fastest-growing business empires. GE group today having 6 Companies working in Import-Exports. Today we got a chance to interview him. Let’s know more about him & learns from his ups & downs.
We hope this can inspire you to become a successful person too! It is worth listening to a successful entrepreneur or to people who share their success stories? We can significantly learn many things from the experiences of them, by listening to their story.
Excerpts from our exclusive interview with him:
Q1) Tell us a little bit about your start-up and your journey, please;
I am from Pune, Maharashtra, and class IV Merchant Navy officer graduated in marine engineering 2014. My family having a Transportation business since 1990. It’s all about the small journey that started in 2014 when suddenly I had managed the responsibilities of the trucking business of Pune after my father’s demise and gradually developed today as one of the fastest-growing business empires.
GE group today having 6 Companies working in Import-Exports, ( AgroProducts & Metals, scrap ) Logistics, shipping, Information Technology, Media. Now it’s not because of one person but it’s because of the team which is working hard and aligned for vision to realize something big together and which lasts long. In an organization for more than 4 years we have seen many ups and downs also success stories and failure stories but still today the bond between partners /business associates makes us stand different and powerful. we have our own establishments in the Middle East and the Far East.
Our Business ventures are mostly related to shipping and Import exports . We have very dynamic & expertise team today in each sector
Q2) How did the idea for your business/startup come about?
It’s all about one vision I have seen in 2012 and then since this journey continues. First, from a Family Business background, I expanded it in a different way. We loved doing traditional business in an innovative way. Startup idea comes that simple today we are truck lorry trailer owner and journey have one milestone of having our group own bulk carrier ships and oil Tankers and we are paving our way for same. I personally have an opinion of never put your all eggs in one basket. So still our one team keeps looking for new opportunities, acquisition opportunities. So you can say business is in blood and I am one of those gujju.
Q3) What was your key driving force to become an entrepreneur?
As I said above its from Family so the business environment nothing new for me and that’s a thing and now I am really loving the journey and living with passion because my business activities are related to my education of marine and the one force to see my group as ship owner makes me total restless and that is driving force only.
Q4) How did you come up with the name for your business/startup?
After all your name makes the most impact, it’s a kind of sending a message. It’s Gujarathi Empire. Gujarathi is meant for the title. our all group almost of Gujarathi and Jain people with us and secondly empire means its empire of multiple businesses running at the same time effectively and efficiently. Its power. Our Logo is in blue and green color. Blue is the color of the ocean, our business related to the ocean (Exports/shipping) it’s an ocean of opportunities. The green color of Land ( Agro Products) to stay tuned with the motherland.
Q5) What service(s) or product(s) do you offer/manufacture?
Its enterprise / organization of mixed manufacturing and services:-
- We are into Agro products exports of mixed vegetables and fruits and having own sister concerns in Gulf to whom we are exporting.
- our one team is looking after logistics services in Pune & Mumbai we are having own fleet of tempo and trailers and giving service to a different industry.
- Our group is taking industries and real estate premises for demolition and scrap trading.
- 4) We have an expertise team in marine who is having access to open tonnage and open cargoes doing ship brokering work for worldwide ship owners and cargo owners.
- 5) Our Own In house information technology team has developed enterprise solutions software’s like HRMS, Project management, Exports Management, and Logistics and these are currently using for ourselves only and its customized for clients.
Q6) Why should people choose your product/services?
Its experience and mostly our business are inter-related and people always looking for reliable and long term sustaining partner. Services should be in time and flexible as per their requirements. And all time we are taking care of tailor-made solutions in a competitive way. Every product have own Unique selling point ( USP) and that your sales team know in depth so they can able to convince the client and retained them
Q7) How do you market your business, and which tactics have been most successful?
The most successful tool is mouth publicity when people started approaching you for your services. They keep asking other people for their experience with your company. This is a good sign.
Our services are interrelated and our team most of the time doing cross-selling and up-selling, Like we are in scrap business and export business where we using own-logistics services and same we are using own in house software for business management and selling to other companies which are with us in the same business. I never think business is all about competition. It’s growing together by shaking hands.
Retaining old clients and giving them value added services is more easy than every time looking for new clients.
Q8) What risks are you facing?
There are many risks and ups downs my team faced in the last 3 years demonetization makes an impact on trading, GST also makes it difficult initially now it’s easy and COVID 19, business growth is not that much, right India-china War lessen the movements of import containers in logistics. Business is all about risks and adventures and as a businessman that is the thrill of an unexpected journey and roller coaster ride. It’s on you how you are patiently dealing with all around you. Financial crunch and unexpected movements are the major risks for each sector.
Q9) Did the pandemic (COVID 19) affected your business? if yes how?
Yes, Logistics and other sectors have slowed down and companies having very little production and labor issues are still there. But it will be recovered in the next few months. Cash flow is not usual as every business has an impact.
Q10) Have you considered any alliance/partnership/funding?
Yes, our team is all time engaged to lined up new projects and one team is all time working with bankers / private investors for seeking funds in new projects or any takeover of business of the same industry. Those teams are of CA, Financial advisors, bankers, and legal which having own expertise and network to do so.
Q11) What are your responsibilities as the business owner?
Keeping business sustainable in tough times, As CEO minimizing business risks, looking for the good opportunity of acquisitions for company growth, raising funds and monitoring all operations reports and taking important feedback from the team and advise them to guide them in case of any difficulty.
Q12) How many hours a day do you work on average & can you describe/outline your typical day?
It’s very difficult to tell when your mind all time occupied with things related to business and activities. But when a strong team working with you to manage and handle things most of the businesses get automated and still we are not that much honestly efficiently automated working hours are quite more than normal.
The day started at 10 AM and mostly ended up by night 9 PM. Early morning prayers and exercise and night before sleep no any thinking of business. All things like a bunch of calls/bunch of mails/bunch of meetings lined up the day before so it’s often easy to handle multi-tasking work and many times I myself found free to work on exciting things. I am very self-disciplined in nature.
Q13) What is your greatest fear, and how do you manage fear?
I am fearless, every problem there is solutions and there is way to handle things.
Q14 What comes first for you money or emotions?
In business money does matter and you should be practical, emotions have a very little place, sometimes you have to take a hard decision in Business. Emotions help to bind up teams so they can work in a good manner to achieve corporate goals.
Q15) Tell us about your early life & How has being an entrepreneur affected your family life?
I was always in an un-comfort zone and now nothing new in it, I am used to it and that’s great actually as an entrepreneur. As a marine also sailing on ship life is tough full of storms and pitching rolling, same happening in entrepreneur life you need consistency, patience and constant hard work even if you failed and not getting the result you should be focused. Family life yes enjoying the business itself as a bachelor.
Q16) What piece of advice would you give to college graduates who want to become entrepreneurs??
Basically, it’s all about a mental journey how tough you care how you can stick to the guns in whatever case, All with patience, consistency, and discipline. Here you have to stay on for your dreams and vision. For job and for business both having the different mentality to work on. Starting and surviving is tough nothing is there as you planned always expect the opposite prepared for the same.
His Ventures @
- GE SHIPPING & TRADING PVT LTD
- GE ASSOCATES LLP
- GE EXPORTS PVT LTD
- GE MEDIA & ENTERTAINMENT PVT LTD
- GE INFOTECH PVT LTD
Follow Him @
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