Jaipur Rugs: 2 Looms 9 Weavers to India’s Largest Manufacturer of Hand Woven Carpets
What started with two looms and nine local weavers at a small town in the northwestern state of Rajasthan in 1978 blossomed to India’s largest manufacturer of hand-woven floor coverings. The visionary entrepreneur behind the founding of Jaipur Rugs Co. is Nand Kishore Chaudhary (NKC).
It was from a young age that NKC was determined to do something meaningful in life. As he observed the local weavers, he fell in love with the process of carpet making. He gave up his bank job and borrowed Rs. 5000 from his father to start his carpet business. For transportation, he banked upon his scooter. Today Jaipur Rugs is a multimillion-dollar company that employs thousands of people from across the spectrum.
A vast network of 40,000 artisans from 600 villages in 10 states across India produces quality handcrafted wool, wool-silk, pure silk and contemporary carpets. It was always NKC’s dream to provide a sustainable living to these talented artisans. Jaipur Rugs is a family business that lays importance in keeping family values alive. The first step in this process is empowering every woman of the house by giving her access to a sustainable livelihood at her doorstep.
The company employs men and women who live in the most remote parts of India with little to no access to transport. The greatest challenge in these artisans’ lives is commuting to work and back, often resulting in families that live far apart. One of the key differentiators of the Jaipur Rugs model is an artisan’s ability to not only work from home but have business travel to them. Through the company’s ERP system, the most isolated villages of India are brought on a digital interface, truly linking the grassroots to global.
In 1999, Nand Kishore Chaudhary set up a sister concern in USA called Jaipur Rugs Inc. to ease sales and distribution in North America. Today the company has carved a distinctive niche as a global name.
3. Artisan Originals
4. Dhurries, etc.
4. Flat weave
12. Playful patterns, etc.
Over time, Jaipur Rugs has won numerous awards, with accolades ranging from design awards to social service recognitions. Few of these include:
1. NASSCOM’s Social Innovation Honors 2014
2. IndiaMART Leaders of Tomorrow Awards
3. The Times of India Social Impact Award 2012 and more.
Through a grassroots network that requires specialised logistical support, raw material is dropped off at the artisans’ home where they work on the product. To ensure customers receive high quality products, quality supervisors inspect looms to help ensure a consistent output while tracking progress.
These supervisors also ensure artisan service to ensure they are not interrupted by the shortage of yarn or any other such disruptions to earning capacity. When completed, the rug is picked up from the weavers’ doorsteps and sent on to the next stage of the rug making progress. These visits also ensure that weavers are paid every month at their looms.
On the design front, Kavita Chaudhary, talented design director at Jaipur Rugs, was recently nominated for an award by the prestigious German Design Council. Her love for design was first celebrated in 2006 – being the recipient of the 23rd America’s Magnificent Carpet Award for re-inventing the Sumac collection. She also went on to receive the 30th America’s Magnificent Carpet Award and was short listed for the Carpet Design Award at Domotex Hannover.
Just recently, her Unstring collection won the Carpet Design Awards 2017 for best modern collection. She is the first Indian designer to have received this most prestigious award in the carpet industry.
The company’s social business model is focused on increasing its social impact by scaling up operations to new territories and firmly establishing as a global brand that reflects quality and innovation.
The company’s unique business model is included as an example of tackling world poverty in late economist C. K. Prahalad’s “The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid.” Renowned institutions such as Harvard University, Stanford University and the Wharton School of Business have also studied the company’s robust supply chain.
Nand Kishore Chaudhary is also the founder of Jaipur Rugs Foundation (JRF), a Trust that provides further training and education, health care and developmental training to thousands of rural artisans, who work diligently to weave Jaipur Rugs’ carpets. “My vision is to link our grassroots with global buyers and create shared value for both, “ he says. NKC has been featured in well-known magazines besides making it on the cover of one of the most esteemed magazines, Outlook Business.
While Jaipur Rugs is deeply inspired by the ancient traditions and designs that India is known for the world over, the company also has a keen eye for contemporary modern styles. Their one-of-the-kind carpets woven by their weavers have adorned many a living space across the world.
The 40,000 plus artisans at Jaipur Rugs are the backbone of the company. Nand Kishore Chaudhary’s family is further instrumental in steering the company into a global entity. At the helm of affairs are Smt. Sulochana Chaudhary, his wife; Mr. Yogesh Chaudhary, Mr. Nitesh Chaudhary, his sons; and Ms. Asha Chaudhary, Ms. Archana Chaudhary, Ms. Kavita Chaudhary, his daughters.
For more info, visit the official website of Jaipur Rugs.