Army veterans Capt Chethan Y K and Capt Niranth Byamana have started a first-of-its-kind store that offers premium military wear for life inside and outside the barracks.
Called Olive Planet, it celebrates the spirit of wearing olive, a colour associated with valour.
Today, the camouflage print aka the army print serves as a fashion statement. Be it on apparel or accessories such as bottles, mobile covers and backpacks, the military print has a charm of its own.
“In the Army, we tend to do a lot of joint exercises and spend time with armies of different countries. During one such exercise, a few requirements were difficult to find,” says Byamana, recalling how it all began.
Byamana had heard of a place run by Chethan as a hobby.
“I reached out to him and was surprised by the options he showed me,” Byamana told Metrolife.
He realised Chethan’s hobby could be turned into something bigger. So when Byamana came out of the Army, he asked Chethan whether he would be interested in expanding.
And in no time, the two came up with the blueprint for Olive Planet. It has been nine years since.
“Considering that military products available in the market are substandard, and buying them from abroad can be expensive, our aim is to make high-quality military gear affordable and available to more soldiers,” says Byamana.
Terming the good quality products as a necessity to military personnel, he says the idea of the business is to give our soldiers the best.
Products at Olive Planet are produced in India and also imported from Germany, Korea, China, Taiwan, US, Israel and Bangladesh.
“We are convincing manufacturing companies to start making these products for us in India. We are trying to change the scene in India. It will take time, but we are at it,” says Byamana.
The brand has about 10,000 products, ranging from combat uniforms, bulletproof jackets and binoculars, to boots and backpacks.
“Soldiers have very distinct requirements, and we have also seen a large chunk of people going on expeditions. Our products are for both the Army and civilians,” Byamana says.
Workshops at cafe
Recently, Olive Planet launched a Continental cafe. The army-themed cafe is for people who like adventure and want to learn about the life of a soldier, he says.
The cafe is designed with army-style tents.
Unlike a regular cafe, it hosts workshops in self-defence and survival that are part of army training.
It hosts talk sessions with army veterans and screens war documentaries.
Olive Planet is located at No 16, 1st Cross, Sandiv Orchids, Kattigenahalli. It also has an online presence: www.oliveplanet.in
It provided costumes, props for Uri
Olive Planet supplied the costumes and props for the hit film ‘Uri: The Surgical Strike’.
Talking about this collaboration, Capt Niranth Byamana says, “Rohit Chaturvedi, costume designer, had done extensive research. He reached out to us looking for what soldiers actually wore during the real event.”
It took Olive Planet three months to finalise the costumes and props. “The good part was Rohit knew exactly what he wanted,”