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About us

Our founder began Akshara industries as a way to give back to the women from financially challenged backgrounds.  She is a first generation entrepreneur who began the company from scratch.

Her family has spent their careers as scientific and business related entrepreneurs. For more than 20 years, they have complemented their backgrounds by putting their careers together to develop this company.

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The abundant natural diversity in the flora and fauna found in Odisha, India provide

raw materials for making agarbatti.

How we began

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Why a women run company 

When work first began in akshara industries in the late 1990s, a few women came looking for work.  When our founder talked to these women, they told her about their situation at their houses. Some of their husbands had lost their jobs and had a difficult time finding new jobs. Some of these women had never worked outside the house. Other women could not find jobs because they were unmarried and did not feel comfortable working in a male construction job where they had to carry sand and bricks.  These jobs were seasonal and often they were out of a job.

They all said one thing, 'they wanted to be financially independent, but did not know how'.

Being a woman herself, our founder understood these women.

'Can you learn how to make agarbatti?', she asked them. 

They all said YES.

 

Immediately after she hired them, more women came to join the company. We began teaching them how to make agarbatti since then. 

Now some of these women have become teachers and teach other women who begin to newly work at our site. 

Can I wear jeans?

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It was a question one of our women asked our founder. 

 

'There are mostly women in our company. Can I wear jeans for one day, Madam? My family don't allow me. ' 

This woman working for us said that she had seen women wearing jeans on TV but could never wear them at home.

 

Many of these women come from poor families where it is still unheard of to wear western clothes. Jeans were thought of as indecent clothes.

When our founder said it was okay, the woman was so happy. We realized that for her it was a big step. She still works for us and sometimes wears jeans and pants. 

 

Since then our women wear jeans, long shirts, salwar or saree if they want to.  

 

 

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