December 8, 2023

Ferries may seem like a cleaner mode of transportation, but most of them run on diesel – a highly polluting fossil fuel.

According to the European Union Monitoring Reporting and Verification of CO2 Emissions report, while ferries represent just 3 percent of all vessels, they account for 10 percent of all maritime pollution.

To help solve this problem, Kerala launched India’s first solar-powered ferry boat ‘Aditya’ in 2017. Promoting the use of clean energy, the boat prevents the burning of 35,000 litres of diesel each year and helps reduce carbon dioxide emissions.


Sandith Thandasherry, Founder and CEO of Kochi-based NavAlt Solar and Electric Boats, claims the boat has saved 100,00 litres of diesel to date.

However, he hasn’t stopped innovating; he is working to build green energy-powered RORO (cargo ships) and advanced techniques ships and boats for fishermen that are affordable and easy to use.

In an interaction with SMBStory, Sandith talks about new developments, battling limitations, and doing his bit to make the world a clean, better place. 

Read the full story here.


When brothers Amar and Raghavendra Pawar were in college around 2008, they were looking to purchase T-shirts that cost Rs 300 or less for their daily use. But none of the brands in the market gave them that. They were either priced too high or not good quality.

Since the brothers had an entrepreneurial bent of mind, they decided to investigate a business opportunity in the T-shirt trading space. 

“We wanted to provide high-quality products at a reasonable price,” Raghav says. In 2011, the brothers opened a shop in Borivali West, Mumbai, bought from wholesalers, and began selling T-shirts.

As the sales and popularity of the store grew, Raghav and Amar faced a challenge: garnering the volume of clothes. 

However, the breakthrough came in 2013 when they decided to start contract manufacturing and come up with their own brand, Powerlook

According to the founders, apart from being affordable, Powerlook aims to give India a brand that is high-street, fashionable, and has nuances of the west. 

Today, Powerlook has built a sizable presence in the Indian menswear market. With a whopping 288k followers on Instagram and five stores in Mumbai, Amar and Raghav share plans to touch Rs 40 crore revenue in FY23.

Read the full story here.

Other top stories of the week-

Tilaknagar Industries

The coronavirus pandemic disrupted many sectors, and the Indian liquor industry was no exception. Alcobev companies – right from the top to the bottom of the pyramid – felt the impact. 

But a firm that has managed to stay afloat is Tilaknagar Industries. The Mumbai-based alcobev company was founded in 1933 by Mahadev L Dahanukar as Maharashtra Sugar Mills. It started a distillery division in the 1970s and scaled up to become one of the most prominent liquor brands in India. 

Tilaknagar’s most famous offering is brandy, which accounts for about 89 percent of its overall revenues. The company claims that Mansion House Brandy, Courrier Napolean Brandy Green, and Red are some of its most profitable offerings.

Apart from brandy, the company also manufactures and sells whiskey, rum, vodka, and gin. In total, the company sells through 15 categories, and its presence goes beyond India to countries like Kenya, Rwanda, Bahrain, Singapore, South Korea, and more.

While COVID-19 disrupted its operations as well, Tilaknagar Industries has been gradually recuperating. In Q3 ended December 2021, the company clocked revenue worth over Rs 501 crore with a profit after tax (PAT) of Rs 9.78 crore. The financial results for FY22 are yet to be released in the public domain. 

In an interaction with SMBStoryAmit Dahanukar, Managing Director of the National Stock Exchange-listed company, says the company may be recovering from the pandemic and its effects, threats such as taxation and rising cases of COVID-19 continue to loom large over it and the industry at large. 

Read the full story here.

Ramsons Perfumes

Perfumes have been synonymous with luxury in India for long, with European fragrances dominating the market. Given the following they have, the few national players seem to have been left out in the cold. Despite providing quality products at affordable prices. 

Things are changing now as the disposable income of people increases along with the number of made in India offerings.

Despite the Indian perfume market growing at around 15 percent each year, Sanjeev Pandey, a second-generation entrepreneur and Director of Mumbai-based Ramsons Perfumes, says the fragrance market is still at a nascent stage in India. 

In 1984, Sanjeev’s father Ramesh Pandey started a small perfume business in Mumbai to make quality perfumes available in India at affordable prices. 

“My father was working with Birla Group. That time, demand for perfume existed but there were only a few local players. Perfume was considered a premium item, and there were limited customers who used foreign brands. This was the gap that our father wanted to fill, and he — along with his brothers — started Ramsons Perfumes,” Sanjeev says.

The idea was simple: to make perfumes affordable so people from the middle-income group could also enjoy this “luxury” item. 

Read the full story here.

Edited by Teja Lele Desai