Mandira Sarkar who is an entrepreneur started her journey as an entrepreneur when she sifted to the UK from her hometown in India. After moving to the UK, she started missing her cook more than her parents. She worked as a management consultant for the following 17 years and constantly complained about the lack of “real” Indian food as she doesn’t know how to cook.
Then, one day her friend told her to “put her money where her mouth was.” Mandira eventually decided to follow her passion and pursue something that her parents would strongly oppose after all, who in their right mind would leave a well-paying, secure profession in their forties to cook for a living.
That is how Mandira’s Kitchen was founded. Initially, she started offering supper clubs and catering from the home kitchen before relocating to its beautiful location. It is now offering award-winning food, providing culinary experiences such as cookery lessons, spice tours, and supper clubs, and running its little shop with the best Malabar coffee, freshly brewed chai, and the crispest samosas in town.
But at that moment she realized that she didn’t want to be a caterer because it must be a competitive business, especially if you’re quitting a job. And she didn’t want to be self-employed since she wouldn’t get paid if she didn’t cook one day. That’s when she began making freezer meals and visiting farmers’ markets. And that’s how she got started with the huge plan of becoming an entrepreneur, but once you’re in it, you just give it your all, and that’s how her entrepreneurial journey started.
The challenge which she faced in the launch of her business is to learn to cook by herself. In 2019, she decided to expand Mandira’s Kitchen with the support of her cleaning lady Sabina and a £750 investment. When she discovered Sabina was a good cook, she asked her to assist her with the cooking. So, she initiated with £750 and put whatever she earned back.
Her business is now expanded into a £450,000 turnover business and currently employs 16 women. Mandira’s goal is to inspire other young women with what she accomplished. Mandira is a big fan of entrepreneurship, and she is passionate about women in business. Women are hardly considered as the first choice when it comes to entrepreneurship. Career counselors tell them that they can be a doctor or a hairdresser, but no one ever asks whether they want to be an entrepreneur.