WEAV­ING A STORY

PALAK SHAH, 28 Founder, Ekaya, Delhi

India Today - - SMART EDUCATION / TOP VOICES - —By Shelly Anand

Brim­ming with ideas and a win­ning at­ti­tude, it’s tough to imag­ine Palak Shah as a timid young girl. But time spent first at board­ing school, and then at King’s Col­lege Lon­don in the UK for her bach­e­lors in busi­ness man­age­ment, and later for an MBA in en­trepreneur­ship at Bab­son Col­lege in the US, shaped her per­son­al­ity and out­look on life. “I trav­elled alone for the first time to the UK in 2009. Dur­ing those three years, I learnt to make my own choices” says Shah.

Eye on the Fu­ture

Shah launched Ekaya, a be­spoke lux­ury la­bel help­ing to pre­serve Be­narasi weaves, in 2012. In 2015, she went to Bab­son Col­lege and it was as a col­lege pro­ject that she con­ceived Ekaya Thaan, a tex­tile gallery show­cas­ing hand­wo­ven fab­rics from all over In­dia. “My pro­fes­sor told me it was not a prof­itable busi­ness model, but I was sure of my idea,” says Shah. A year old, Ekaya Thaan has turned out to be a prof­itable ven­ture.

Chal­leng­ing Path

“I loved being in the US. It is a ma­ture and com­pet­i­tive mar­ket. It throws tough tasks at you, and teaches you how to deal with prob­lems,” she says. Shah’s ad­vice for those want­ing to take up a course abroad: get out of your com­fort zone and do not be scared to fail. “No guts, no glory,” as she says.

A BRIGHT SPARK Palak Shah at Ekaya store in Delhi

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