NIIKHIL BALLAL & JUILI KULKARNI
As children, we were always fascinated by the colourful pencils, erasers, sharpeners that our parents used to buy for us just before our schools reopened. An amalgamation of panoply of colours is spectator’s delight and the fragrance oozing out of the brand new stationery is undoubtedly alluring. For some, the opportunity to own the latest pencil, compass box, and other items was the only incentive to go to school. And why not? These products always gave joy and were the prized possessions of any student during school days. To add to the happiness of children, DOMS is slowly and steadily entering the school bags through their hearts.
Rubbing shoulders with the veterans who have been in the business of stationery for decades, is the innovative company DOMS. Henry Kissinger once quoted, “A diamond is a chunk of coal that did well under pressure”. The success story of DOMS is certainly a personification of Kissinger’s words. Producing its first ever pencil in 1976 to manufacturing the quintessential stationery today, the Raveshia family has seen it all. Mr. Rasiklal Raveshia, a man with a vision, along with his partner Mr. Mansuklal Rajani set the ball rolling 42 years back when the dashing duo made their first pencil under the banner of RR industries. Dedication, hard work, and more importantly the daring to dream big summed up the personalities of Mr. Raveshia and Mr. Rajani. After the sad demise of the visionaries, it was Mr. Raveshia’s son Santosh who saw light at the end of the tunnel.
Picking up from where his father had left, Mr. Santosh Raveshia bounced back hard, and with the able aegis of his elder sisters; Chandni and Sheetal, DOMS was born. The Raveshia family is a close knit family and they believe in staying together, in times of happiness and sorrows. The family bond among the Raveshias is explicitly evident as they have named the company after their younger generation. DOMS is an acronym of the initials of the four kids of the family; Dharm, Om, Muskan, and Shivani.
Despite the presence of already established players, DOMS dared to enter the market, of course not with the stereotypical stationery but with eye popping range of products. DOMS offers an array of goods like Wooden Graphite Pencils, Wooden Colour Pencils, Polymer Graphite Pencils, Polymer Colour Pencils, Pencil Sharpeners, PVC free and Phthalate free Erasers, Mathematical and Drawing Instruments, Ball point Pens and wide range of Student Art Material. On a daily basis, DOMS produces a whopping sum of 50 lakh pencils, 25 lakh erasers, 15 lakh sharpeners, and 50,000 Mathematical Instruments Boxes.
The factory where these items are manufactured leaves you awestruck, thanks to the scale of operation, machineries, and the man power that goes behind it. The fragrance oozing out of the eraser manufacturing plant simply pulls you towards it and the moment you enter the huge factory you are awestruck by the kind of processes that take place in the making of a humble eraser. Just adjacent to that, is where the eraser’s companion pencil is manufactured. To make that simple stick of wood that is used by children to draw their first ever lines, it takes over a 100 processes.
With cutting edge innovation and state of the art quality of products, DOMS is swiftly making its way to rub shoulders with the big brothers of stationery business. “We have always been problem solvers rather than product sellers. Offering a low grade product to a consumer is a serious offence and its ramifications of course are manifold”, stated Mr. Santosh.
Michael Porter has rightly said, “Innovation means offering things in different ways, creating new combinations.” Seeking inspiration from Porter’s words, DOMS has introduced a plethora of innovative products to woo not only the children but also the adults. Mr. Santosh described,
“The dual brush of DOMS is an innovation. In this brush, you can paint from both the sides; one side has roundish end whereas the other side has a flat end. Another startling feature in the poster colours space is that DOMS provides an Agitator with its every poster colours’ set. The hassle of mixing colours in the glass bottle using the wooden end of the paint brush is averted, courtesy Agitator which is designed solely for the purpose of mixing colours”.
“The every new product that we launch undergoes a research of atleast one and a half year. During this time, we conduct surveys to fathom the pain points of the consumers and then design accordingly to minimize or overcome the problems”, explained Ms. Chandni. DOMS does not limit itself to conventional things rather it traverses that extra mile to win its customers. Ms. Sheetal elucidated, “We have the blue pencils for boys that has the pictures of things that the boys like, like sports under the umbrella of Mama’s Boy, and pink pencils for girls with pictures of dolls, music, and other girly stuff under the banner of Daddy’s Princess”.
The work of DOMS garnered foreign attention when an Italian company Fila took interest and bought 18.5% stake in the company in 2011. Since then there is no looking back for the Indian stationery giant. In addition to this, DOMS grew inorganically as it acquired majority stake in Pioneer thereby introducing notebooks for the audience.
Looking at the extravagant stationery offered by DOMS, you feel like going back to school and flaunting the DOMS pencils, erasers, sharpeners, and colours in front of your friends. The in-depth research undertaken with respect to each and every product, indisputably makes DOMS stand out among its peers. The people of rural India are already blessed with the fancy looking and at the same time user friendly stationery items of DOMS, now is the time for the out of the box stationery manufacturer to enchant the urban population with its amazing products.