How co-founder Abhishek Reddy helped a small design company to take off and flourish through participating in the Business Development Center’s entrepreneurial training program
Criador Labs combines expertise in design and engineering to provide companies with innovative design solutions that improve user experience. They are passionate about empowering small and medium enterprises to create excellent products.
Abhishek Reddy is co-founder of Criador Labs, a startup that focuses on providing custom-made and user-friendly solutions to design needs. They have come up with many innovative designs for products ranging from salt shakers that avoid clumping to a portable projector that can be used without electricity in remote locations.
Abhishek joined Criador Labs (formerly Divine Design Factory) after the founder Hitesh Devara moved to Bangalore. Abhishek’s previous background was in Enterprise Management at IBM. Shortly after joining as co-founder, Abhishek took the BDC Entrepreneurship Class to augment his knowledge of how to run a start-up. About the course, he says that it especially helps a budding entrepreneur envision how to bring his ideas to form. He emphasizes that the course is unique in encouraging entrepreneurs to start with delving into their own vision and dream, coming up with a unique contribution that they desire to make through their company, rather than focusing on merely how to be a “successful” business and make money.
Initially, Criador Labs was focused on product design, but they have now branched out into strategy design and packaging design as well, with the goal of diversifying and as an expansion strategy. Instead of focusing on the large and multinational companies that their competitors target, Criador desires to empower small and medium enterprises to improve their product design and develop their brand. These smaller companies have a tendency to produce subpar products because of lack of knowledge of design, often merely copying from Chinese products. Criador Labs wants to help such companies who desire to launch new innovative products or redesign existing products, to come up with unique and custom solutions to improve user experience. In addition to the Industrial Design, which many of their competitors do, Criador will often go beyond to actually engineer the product for a small company, sometimes even designing the technology. This is necessary as they are catering to a different segment that doesn’t always have their own teams to do these services, as larger companies do. The use of high-end 3D printers allows Criador to create lifelike replicas of the product, giving the customer a chance to preview the product’s look and feel, as well as allowing for testing of the design in the market.
Challenges the company has faced include convincing smaller companies that it is worth paying for design services in order to set themselves apart in excellence. Another challenge is working with manufacturing partners, who sometimes make mistakes and fail to manufacture the product up to the standards of the original design, thus reflecting badly on the designers. At the time that Abhishek joined the company, Criador was at a low point. However, today the business is growing quite fast, having recorded a 150% increase in revenues for the 2017-18 financial year when compared with the previous year. The three-member team that Abhishek joined has now expanded to include 8 employees, with co-founders Hitesh and Abhishek managing, and designers and engineers working under them. In the future, Criador Labs hopes to continue diversifying further and offer new services to their clientele. Please do check out the services of Criador Labs (criadorlabs.com) for all your design needs!