Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Sheraspace: Transforming the Interior Design Landscape in Bangladesh

The interior design industry in Bangladesh is undergoing a remarkable transformation. In the past, interior design was often considered a luxury exclusively for the affluent, but a shift is occurring. Today, innovative platforms like Sheraspace are making interior design services accessible to the middle class, ushering in a new era of inclusivity in the country’s design landscape.

Sheraspace is a pioneering interior design platform with a mission to revolutionize the industry in Bangladesh. It seeks to bring interior design within reach of the middle-class population, a segment previously underserved. Historically, interior design was viewed as a time-consuming and costly endeavor, creating a barrier for many middle-class individuals. However, the emergence of online interior design consultations and affordable pricing options is changing this narrative.

Overview:

Sheraspace is an interior design platform that leverages technology to address the limited access to interior design services for Bangladesh’s middle-class, which comprises approximately 40 million people. Traditionally, interior design in Bangladesh was considered a privilege reserved for the wealthy elite. The perception was that interior design demanded substantial time, effort, and financial resources, making it seem out of reach for the majority of the middle-class population. Sheraspace challenges this notion head-on.

Recognizing that interior design should be accessible to all, not just a privileged few, Sheraspace embarked on a mission to democratize interior design in Bangladesh. They introduced an innovative service called Online Interior Design Consultation, connecting clients with professional interior designers who craft personalized design plans based on specific requirements. These design plans include mood board visualizations, 2D and 3D sketches, furniture arrangements, and overall themes and color palettes. Remarkably, clients can access these design plans online from the comfort of their homes, with prices starting at just 2,800 BDT per room. Sheraspace’s initiative ensures that affordable interior design services are now within reach for Bangladeshi consumers, breaking down barriers and making it accessible at an affordable price point.

Founding Story:

After completing her Master’s degree at University College London, Sarjeena Maodud, the Co-founder and CEO of Sheraspace, returned to her hometown of Dhaka in 2017. While exploring various industries for innovative opportunities, she unexpectedly delved into the world of interior design. It all began with a home renovation project for her new residence in Dhaka. Like any consumer, Sarjeena aspired to have beautiful interiors for her home. However, her experience turned out to be disorganized and unpleasant. A year later, at the end of the interior project, she realized that no matter how much time, effort, and money one invests in the interior design process, there’s no guarantee of a satisfactory outcome.

Fueled by curiosity and a determination to find a solution, Sarjeena delved deeper into the interior design industry. She joined forces with Nizam Farid Ahmed, the Co-founder and COO of Sheraspace, to embark on a journey to revolutionize the field. Their goal was to create a tech-driven platform that could address the efficiency, transparency, and quality needs of the interior design industry. This vision led to the birth of Sheraspace in 2019.

Milestones and Challenges:

One year into its operations, Sheraspace, like many other companies, faced the impact of the pandemic that was disrupting businesses worldwide. With movement restrictions in place, the company, which previously relied on offline interior installation, found itself at a standstill. This sudden halt resulted in a complete closure of all revenue streams, with no visible improvement in the situation.

In the face of this critical challenge that threatened the survival of Sheraspace, a significant realization occurred: “If physical interior design was not possible, why not offer it virtually?” This idea took root in the mind of CEO Sarjeena Maodud and marked a pivotal moment for Sheraspace—a transformative shift in the startup landscape. This pivot allowed the company to serve a new segment of customers: the middle class, who, despite their aspirations, lacked access to affordable, timely, and hassle-free interior design services that aligned with their budgets and busy lives.

Thus, the concept of Online Interior Design Consultation was born, enabling people in Bangladesh to design their homes from the comfort of their own homes for the first time ever. This service provided an affordable and accessible solution that allowed customers to bring their design visions to life—an opportunity that was previously limited to their Pinterest boards or lifestyle magazines. With Online Interior Design Consultation, consumers now have a swift and affordable means to achieve the interiors they had only dreamed of before.

Services of Sheraspace:

Sheraspace offers a range of services to cater to its customers’ interior design needs, which can be categorized into three main segments:

Online Interior Design Consultation:
When a customer contacts Sheraspace, whether by booking an appointment on their website, calling the hotline, or chatting with a representative on social media, the team engages in an online consultation. During this consultation, they take time to understand the customer’s requirements, gather relevant information, and log their needs into their CRM (Customer Relationship Management) and Project Management software. Based on the customer’s specific requirements, the best-fit designer creates a unique Design Plan. The Design Plan is then presented to the client through a live video call, where any queries they may have are also addressed. This entire process, from capturing the requirements to delivering the design, typically takes only a week to complete.

Commercial Design Consultation:
In addition to Sheraspace’s Online Interior Design Consultations for residential spaces, they also offer Commercial Design Consultations. These consultations are tailored to meet the needs of startups and small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that often face budget constraints. Their goal is to provide affordable design solutions that cater to their commercial space requirements.

Interior Execution:
Apart from design-focused consultations, Sheraspace provides comprehensive end-to-end interior design solutions. They take care of all aspects of the customer’s installation and space makeover needs. This includes handling fittings work, creating custom furniture, managing projects, and fulfilling product sourcing requirements. With their Interior Execution service, customers can rely on Sheraspace to transform their spaces according to their desired design aesthetic and functionality.

At Sheraspace, they deliver efficient and personalized interior design services to clients. Whether it’s through online consultations, commercial design solutions, or complete interior execution, Sheraspace strives to meet customers’ needs and create spaces that they truly love.

Sheraspace Achievements:

Transforming interior design from a luxury to an accessible service requires initiatives that educate and raise awareness among customers, leading to a shift in mindset. The ultimate measure of a product or service’s success often lies in the testimonials of its customers.

One particular moment in Sheraspace’s journey toward democratizing interior design stands out as a powerful endorsement of its mission. It involved a woman from Rajshahi who, with some apprehension, reached out to the Sheraspace hotline to inquire about their Online Interior Design Consultation. Living in a humble tin-shed house, she was unsure if a company based in Dhaka would be willing to design the interiors of her modest living space. The Sheraspace team, sharing this story with Business Inspection BD, expressed their joy in accepting her request and recognized it as a significant milestone in their journey. To have someone living in a tin-shed house believe that professional interior design services were within her reach exemplifies the true democratization of interior design facilitated by Sheraspace.

With a portfolio of over 4,000 designed spaces, Sheraspace has made an impact in Bangladesh and also served clients internationally in the UK, Canada, and the United States. The absence of physical boundaries has enabled the company to provide its virtual services beyond Bangladesh. Their accomplishments have garnered attention from major news outlets in the country, and they recently also presented themselves as an innovative Bangladeshi startup at the University of Cambridge’s business school.

Future Plans:

Sheraspace has a clear vision for its future, driven by a growing target market and a unique solution that perfectly aligns with the needs of the market. The company’s mission is to democratize interior design in Bangladesh, making it accessible to everyone.

Currently, Sheraspace is dedicated to expanding its highly sought-after services while ensuring that customer satisfaction remains at the forefront. The company recognizes the increasing significance of automation and artificial intelligence in business operations and has devised plans to harness these emerging technologies. By leveraging state-of-the-art tools, Sheraspace aims to empower its designers, enabling them to deliver their services more efficiently and effectively.

Through their unwavering commitment, Sheraspace strives to transform every space they design into a true “shera” space. This ambitious goal reflects their dedication to creating interior designs that are inclusive and accessible to all.

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