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Indiaspopup.com Founder Archana Yenna Talks About Building an E-Commerce Platform for South Asian Fashion in the States

Indiaspopup.com
4 min read

It has been an impactful journey for Archana Yenna and her online retail destination for luxury wear from India, Indiaspopup.com. She talks about the current trends in the fashion industry that she is excited about, the challenges she faced since 2017 after launching her e-commerce website, and the hope she has for any dreamer to make it big in the industry.

From the likes of TarunTahiliani, Anju Modi, JADE, Ritu Kumar and over 200 designers featured in Indiaspopup.com, Yenna talks to Brown Girl Magazine about the initial challenges in establishing a presence in the United States and worldwide.

 

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Why don’t we first talk about what you have built as a brand and take it from there?

Indiaspopup.com is the USA’s premier online destination for Indian luxury fashion. We built a thoughtfully curated platform that provides a personalized shopping experience to consumers giving them access to our handpicked Indian designer clothing and accessories under one large, virtual roof.

How did this idea don on you, to build Indiaspopup.com?

I was always passionate about the intersection of technology and fashion, and especially how both worlds centered on creating individual experiences. In the past decade, we’ve seen the two industries collide in a number of ways, whether it’s how e-commerce has completely transformed shopping or social media’s influence on fashion. The desire for convenience has become a way of life.

I could envisage the potential of bringing this intersection to life into a business model that is close to my culture. When I think of fashion and relate it back to my origin, Indian Fashion was an obvious choice to me and the potential of connecting South Asian Americans to exclusive creations of Indian luxury designers seemed like a perfect marriage. 

Well, it wouldn’t have been as easy as you make it sound considering the geographical distance and introducing a new market. I am sure you faced challenges; can you talk about the challenges?

Oh yes, there were challenges; now that I think of how we were able to build up from scratch, those challenges seem less like challenges and more like opportunities. You were right in pointing out that the geographical distance was a problem. I still remember, when we initially approached designers, not all designers were so open to the idea of a foreign company representing their brand in a new market, and not overlooking the fact that we didn’t have much credibility either in the Indian fashion business world.

But soon with perseverance, we launched Indiaspopup.com in 2017 with an enviable bank of designers on board. Adding to it, building trust amongst our potential buyers to have them believe the authenticity of our retail platform was also a big challenge. With so many knockoffs on the internet, it was crucial for us to position ourselves as an authentic seller of luxury Indian designers.

 

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So how did you earn the trust of your patrons?

Maintaining integrity in our dealings and ensuring they received what they ordered for. Before moving into launching my own e-commerce website, I held onto one mantra ‘build your brand first and then your business.’ I held onto this all throughout and even when days were cloudy, I didn’t allow myself or my team to blindly pursue profit but carry a vision for the brand.

Which present trend in the fashion industry are you passionate about? 

I am most excited about the consciousness surging towards sustainable fashion. Increasingly, there has been a demand for consciously crafted products and also a rising movement globally to produce line of products in the most environmentally responsible way. I want Indiaspopup.com to be a part of this movement, and hence, we launched The Sustainable Edit, to put the spotlight on sustainable collections from designers in India.

This International Women’s day, we launched 20 brands and over 600 products, taking a massive step in pushing the envelope for introducing sustainable designers from India to the world. Sustainable fashion is no longer an option but a necessity. Growing from strength to strength is the need of the hour as responsible practices take root in the fashion industry. Our aim is to house at least 30% of our product catalogue stemming from sustainable productions by the end of 2021.

 

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We live in the land of the free and the land of the brave, and there are many young dreamers out there who wish to forge a territory for them- would you like to share a message with them?

With true passion, hard work, time and patience, success will always follow. Be prepared to see disparities when you begin working, do not be discouraged, and don’t let your dream be taken away from you. If you are a woman, who wishes to start off a business, be ready to work extra hard. Remember, success is a journey, not a destination.

With a lofty goal to make shopping for South Asian fashion more accessible worldwide, Yenna’s goal of creating a global presence with her e-commerce platform is coming to life. Even better that the Dallas-based retailer is seeing a rise in the conscious buying patterns among its consumers and launched its sustainability vertical. Now you can never say you need to catch a flight to shop for South Asian ensembles, your dream outfit is a few clicks away.

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