The Shoesmiths

Anshul and Neha founded OCEEDEE with the idea of finding a solution to the persistent question of design versus comfort that women face when shopping for shoes

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"I am a right-brained person and I believe travel really played a big role in my life in shaping the creativity in me. I had the opportunity to travel quite a lot while growing up and I distinctly remember the time travel and imagination in my head that ran in parallel to the historical and cultural stories of these cities. The uniqueness of each city, its people, its culture has always inspired me," shares Neha Kumthekar, co-founder, Oceedee.

Anshul Sood and Neha Kumthekar, co-founders, Oceede

This in combination with a desire to create the unconventional is primarily what brewed the entrepreneurial mindset in her. She wanted to create something that's different and stands out and that's what she plans to do with Oceedee. Neha feels that creativity just doesn't come in form of building something, but also it's a behavior trait. And as a business leader, it's very critical to possess one to offer a positive and forward-thinking approach to your team. While Neha remains the creative one, her Co-founder & CEO, Anshul Sood conquers the business vertical.

In 2015, Anshul and Neha founded OCEEDEE with the idea of finding a solution to the persistent question of design versus comfort that women face when shopping for shoes. While doing their initial research, they found a gap in the footwear market with luxury brands like Jimmy Choo and Christian Louboutin on one end and fast fashion brands like Zara and Bata on the other end. There was a huge untapped market in the bridge to luxury segment and furthermore, there was a lack of a homegrown brand offering contemporary designs handcrafted in high-quality leather.

Oceedee is a Made in India brand with a primary focus on the Indian market. As a digital-first brand, its focus has always been online distribution which includes its own website and partner channels such as TataCliq, IndiLuxe, Nykaa, etc. The brand is currently available across India in 11 multi-brand outlets and is looking at expanding this presence to about 20-22 doors by the third quarter of 2022. 2023 will be focused on opening experience centers and flagship stores.

On her expansion plans, Neha, says, "Our next steps include a primary focus on offline distribution to create a hybrid model for the brand. This will include expansion into Multi brand outlets and company-owned experience centers. Along with this, we will be focusing on increasing our brand equity through a conscious and innovative way forward with sustainability, metaverse, and community building - IRL and Web 3.0 at the core." As a young brand, your growth is dependent on the honest feedback of customers. "One channel that helped us greatly was getting more facetime with our customers at exhibitions, fashion pop-ups, where we could understand our customers' pain-points, reactions to our products and also preview an upcoming collection," shares Neha.

No. of people employed - 55
Year of Inception - 2015

For the sixth edition of Entrepreneur's Creative Inc, we recognize 25 creative artists and brand builders selected on the basis of qualitative analysis and consideration from industry leaders and Entrepreneur India Editors, who reviewed hundreds of nominations – under the cultural economy. The people featured in the ensuing pages are the champions of the value of design excellence. How some of these creators are using design to address some of society's most pressing problems showcases their potential for the future. Our ambition with this issue is to explore what role design and creativity play to make a better world.