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“For me, a lot of feminism is about being able to be ourselves.”
Chairman and CEO of VU Televisions, Devita Saraf talks about being a leading woman entrepreneur in India while retaining the ‘femininity’ in a masculine world of business. She draws from experience when she talks about how when she became the commercial face of VU, Forbes did a story on her, calling it the ‘Model CEO” because back then it was uncommon.
“If you are an entrepreneur, no matter how big or small, please be the face of your business.”
Especially women entrepreneurs shouldn’t only be the backend of their businesses, they should also equally be the front-end!
She highlights how often women are forced to be too masculine to fit in.
“I don’t think I would typically fall into the image of a power woman, because I feel even in power women there is a lot of stereotypes.”
In this context, she expresses how femininity is an important part of feminism and no matter the profession losing one’s femininity shouldn’t be the case.
She says how she started her own company nearly 14 years ago while simultaneously studying in California and working in the family business of Zenith Computers. While there, she noticed that there was a trend of Indian consumers becoming more upwardly mobile and hi-tech but a lack of Indian brands to fulfill this need. Most of the top brands were rather Japanese and American. This motivated her to start her company to create technology for the younger generation.
Tracing the journey she says how they began with building gadgets. But they soon realized that the future actually lay in displays, and hence officially entered the television business about 10 years ago.
“As consumers, we are constantly addicted to our screens.”
She says how within the span of just a decade they became the largest Indian owned TV brand worldwide, with offices between California and India. So far with millions of televisions being sold, she says how today she is the 100% owner of her business.
“The technology space, I wouldn’t say has been male-dominated, it is very masculine in its perspectives.”
She highlights the way most of the time technology is sold based on specifications, or science.
“But when you actually absorb technology, it has so much to do with the senses, what you see and what you hear.”
Talking about the principal vision of VU, she says how their purpose is to build intelligent technology with good content. But more essentially they seek to build a brand that consumers love. Upon approached with good feedback from consumers, she says how ultimately that is the greatest achievement.
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