Making moolah out of people's emotive memories

aA start-up that spotted the potential is reaping benefits

Making moolah out of people's emotive memories

Riding on this mileage –– of emotions attached with photographs –– and the potential in what is still a largely unorganised sector, Canvera Digital Technologies Pvt Ltd, a start-up, is speeding its way through the market of digital photography and cutomised photo books/album. Claiming to be the only organised player in the business of making customised photography books/albums in India, Canvera says that 60 per cent of their business is driven by weddings alone, while anniversaries, corporate events, birthdays et al, feature in the other 30 per cent. Growing four-fold year on year, from two people in 2007, when it was conceived, Canvera now has over 300 people working and has its presence in eight cities with Bangalore as headquarters.

What they do?
Canvera, a b2b (business-to-business) digital photography firm with professional photographers making up for their primary clientele, specialises in making customised wedding/ bithday albums, photobooks, calenders and traditional photography prints, all digitally. The company, which has raised around $500 million via three venture capitalists: Footprint ventures, Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Mumbai Angels is promoted by two IIT Bombay graduates –– Dhiraj Kacker and Peeyush Rai. While Kacker has spent 18 years in the same industry, Rai has been involved with the industry for 15 years.
Talking to Deccan Herald Chief Executive Officer Dhiraj Kacker pointed out “our business model allows the photographer, who traditionally used unorganised album manufacturers, offer his/her customers more value by making customised albums as also provide superior quality of imaging. This is our unique selling proposition.”

This allows Canvera to tap the market, as the photographers find greater value in offering exclusive material to their clients, he said, adding that Canvera also quickens the process compared to the unorganised sector with a turnaround time of 24-48 hours for single books/albums. The photographers can either design their own albums that will be executed and printed by Canvera, or ask the firm itself to design and print the book.
There is a free desktop application –– Canvera Pro Designer –– using which photographers can design the book, or they can just log on to the company website to place orders.

The company, besides having numerous clients from across the country also have some big names like Marie Claire, which placed an order for a special edition photobook in December 2009, and cricketer Anil Kumble, whose photobook ‘Wide Angle’ is printed and sold exclusively by Canvera.
DH News Service

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