A healthy eye is directly proportional to a healthy brain. Having healthy eyesight contributes to enhanced learning and understanding, boosted athletic capability, and, of course, a better quality of life. As imitating brands with fake stickers and features has become ubiquitous in the market, how are you maintaining the health of your eyes? The fake products do not meet the safety standards and the low build quality for the sake of style will have long-term adverse consequences. That is where Anthropose comes in: a company that makes eyeglasses with style, quality, and safety in mind. It also provides you with an opportunity to give vision for the sightless and help struggling students level up their studies. Want to know how? Scroll down to know more.
The journey of Anthropose dates back to 2014 when a great bulk of Nepali youths was blinded with the belief of lack of job opportunities in the country. The dried-up economy and lack of positive development cemented the belief even further. But Mr.Suraj Shrestha, the founder of Anthropose, thought differently. Instead of being hopelessly pessimistic, he perennially searched for an idea that would meet the need for economic profit as well as a positive impact on society. The restless search finally led him to a company in the USA called Tom Shoes, that provided shoes to African kids with every shoe sold. Awed by the concept, he immediately formulated the idea.
“A single cataract surgery costs from Rs 7,000 to 12,000, depending on how rural the area is. So, for every ten pairs of eyewear sold, we provide free surgery to a cataract patient and fund public school students to solve the problem of the high rate of dropouts in rural areas. To date, we have cured about 416 cataract patients within 6 years of establishment, ” proudly shares Shrestha.
The importance of vision in quality of life cannot be overstated. 80 percent of what we perceive appears through our sense of sight. How tragic does it feel to lose a sight then? We indeed have abundant eye care services in Nepal yet many people suffer from cataract; a major cause of blindness, every year. The reason for the high numbers isn’t due to lack of services but due to the lack of affordable ones. With a deep understanding of the core cause after multiple research, the team chose to go for the eyewear that could fill the essential gap between the service provider and patient.
In addition, Shrestha shares, “We can easily buy glasses from Rs 200 to Rs 40000, but finding the qualitative and original product is hard. In the long run, we can lose our sight due to improper eye health care and poor glasses. So, to serve every possible individual in a wholesome way, we chose to establish a vision-led company.”
The entire motivation of Anthropose began when owning a Nepali brand was considered risky. Although Nepal boasted a huge manpower, the masses were lacking in ability to discover and create new opportunities. So unless someone does it, there won’t be anything new in the country. In order to stand as an epitome for the survival of the Nepali brand, the company constantly labored to motivate other start-ups to run in Nepal because Shrestha believes that a single thing can’t bring about huge change, it has to be the combined effort of an entire community.
Convincing people to pay Rs 4799, and brand placement was initially a struggle, but their efforts eventually bore fruit. They believe in having played a significant role in the growth of local brands in recent years.
Being an impact-driven company, it is always looking for rooms to bring about mass change. For example, it has recently introduced an eco-friendly collection of eye-wear to contribute to a better environment. The eyewear is an elegant pair made from Eco-Acetate and recycled Acetate.
The 6 months-long lock-down has hugely affected their supply chain, and that has directly impacted revenue generation and operations. Shrestha laments that the business is not going to operate well as per their policy regarding the ongoing pandemic, but that is just how they grow. The pandemic is just one among many challenges they have to face in the entrepreneurial journey. With regard to entrepreneurship, he says, “I’ve found youths with brilliant ideas delaying execution by investing a huge time in market research instead of working practically on the ground and getting their hands dirty. Despite the research being important, I believe jumping into the field consciously with the zeal to take risk will prove to be research by itself, because you learn how to evolve, acknowledge necessary changes and surveil every step you take.”