Kuldeep Singh’s inspirational journey from local shoe manufacturer to Director of Sanfrissco Shoes

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Do you remember how as a teenager you dreamed of opening a shop of your favorite pastime? While many of us have realized that the careers we choose as a child are not a cup of tea for us, there are still some people who were very passionate about their dreams and put their heart and soul into them. One such inspiring person among us is Kuldeep Singh Kohli, the founder of the Sanfrissco brand.

Born and raised in Agra, Kuldeep has always been fascinated by the shoe industry. The main reason for this was that Agra is the center of many shoe manufacturers, retailers, wholesalers and distributors and hence he has always been surrounded by the people of this industry. All these people and this industry made him more and more determined to open his own factory or shop. As a result, Kuldeep started his own shoe factory in 1993 with the help of his family. His family invested around 2 lakh rupees in his business. The factory made shoes for other brands for the first 12 years but unfortunately lacked orders and this resulted in a loss of money that was put into fixed plant and machinery.

Kuldeep Singh was relentless and kept working hard to keep his factory running. He gradually built up his cash flow with the help of small orders and then kept investing in the company by investing in high-quality raw materials for his finished products. In the beginning it was difficult to find customers as fewer people knew and trusted him, but over time more orders came as Kuldeep became known in the market. This was the moment of truth for him and he realized that if he wants to last in the market he needs to build a brand instead of just remaining a contract manufacturing company. That’s why he gave up everything in 2005 and founded his own men’s shoe brand Sanfrissco. In the beginning the company made formal leather shoes for men, but now they have broadened their horizons.

Currently, San Frico not only sells formal shoes but also other types of shoes, sneakers, boots, loafers, sliders etc. The company’s sales increased from Rs 11 crore in 2018-19 to Rs 30 crore in 2021-22 and it was in profit for the last five years. The shoes are available in over 1000 retail stores across India, but 70% of sales come from online sales while 30% of that comes from offline stores.

Initially, the brand had no target customers and only catered to middle-aged men, but in 2014-15, with the hype of the e-commerce world, Kuldeep understood the importance of online stores and felt the need to list his brand on big ones E-commerce platforms like Amazon, Flipkart, etc. Sanfrissco also launched its own online shopping portal in 2017 and later added a high-end vertical called Sanfrissco Luxor in 2020. The journey and success story of Kuldeep Singh Kohli is great. For example, he inspires us to never give up no matter what struggles come along the way.

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